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Letter from Josiah Martin to William Legge, Earl of Dartmouth
Martin, Josiah, 1737-1786
May 27, 1773
Volume 09, Pages 646-647

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[B. P. R. O. Am. & W. Ind.: No. Carolina. No. 220.]
From Governor Martin to Earl Dartmouth.

No. Carolina, New Bern, May 27th 1773.

My Lord,

I have the honor to transmit to your Lordship herewith the Minutes of the Council from the 22d day of August to the 24th day of May last.

Mr Rutherford, the Receiver General of His Majesty's Revenues in this Province, having furnished me with his accounts to the 25th day of March last, certified by His Majesty's Deputy Auditor General, I now lay them before your Lordship, and I propose to transmit them also to the Lords Commissioners of His Majesty's Treasury.

By these accounts it will appear to your Lordship that the King's Revenues in this Province are next to nothing under the present circumstances of things. I confess to you, my Lord, I am of opinion that a larger collection might be made of the Quit Rents than is at present, by proper diligence and exertion, although I agree with Mr Rutherford that a good Law seems to be wanting to put that revenue upon a right and certain footing. The arrears due to the Civil List of the Province are large, but will be a good deal reduced I believe if the Lords of the Treasury shall think proper to direct that the Receiver General set off or discount the Quit rents due from the officers of the Crown (who are and have been for the most part great defaulters) in discharge of their arrears of salary, which they unreasonably, I think, now demand of the Receiver General, while they are largely in debt for Lands they hold of the Crown expecting a remission of the Arrears of Quit Rents in common with the other delinquent Tenants of His Majesty in this Province, in which it is not to be wished they should be disappointed if that Act of Grace is done generally.

The Council of this Province hath instructed the Colony Agent to petition His Majesty for a Salary out of the Revenue of Quit Rents of one hundred pounds sterl. per an. to each member. This measure, my Lord, was proposed by Govr Tryon and objected to by the Earl of Hillsborough, as I am informed, only on the principle of such a Grant being nugatory, while the Crown Revenue here is found insufficient to pay what is already charged upon it. There is

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my Lord a precedent of such an allowance to the Council of Virginia, and I flatter myself your Lordship will be pleased to consider in the most favourable manner the solicitation of His Majesty's Council in this Province whose members seem to have no less good title to reward for their services, which I understand have been ever steady and faithful, and were very particularly signal during the late insurrection in this country. The fortunes of the people of this Colony, my Lord, being in general very moderate, most of the gentlemen of the Council can very ill afford even the little charge attending their meetings here three or four times in the course of the year upon legislative or Chancery Business. I do therefore most heartily wish His Majesty may be graciously pleased to grant them Salaries out of the Revenue of Quit Rents, as soon as it shall become a competent Fund.

I have the honor to be with the highest respect,
My Lord, Your Lordship's most &ca
JO. MARTIN.