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ing fully considered and debated it; or if any | upon what score the purchasers and first demands, which it is imagined might further venturers embarked with thee to plant have been made, were not then granted, the colony, and what grants and promises governor cannot think it proper for him to in- made, and the assurance and expectati termeddle or to concern himself farther than thou gave them and the rest of the settlers by virtue of the king's letter patent, to the inhabitants of this province, to enjoy the proprietary, and the proprietary's commission vileges derived from thy own grants and to him, with her majesty's royal approbation, cessions, besides the rights and freedom to govern according to that charter, and the England: but how they were disappointe laws in force, &c.
several respects, appears, in part, by the
representation, to which we refer; and The assembly thus replied:
come supplicants for relief, not only in mat “ As to the present charter, which the go there complained of which are not yet redi vernor found in being at his arrival, though it ed, but also in things then omitted, as we be far short of an English constitution, yet what have been lately transacted, to the gi even that has been violated by several inroads
ous oppression of the queen's subjects, made upon it: and if the governor cannot public scandal of this government. grant the just and reasonable demands of the
We are much concerned, that thou people's representatives agreeable with an ceived such displeasure as thou did aga English establishment, there is cause to con- that assembly, and not in all this time you clude, that the proprietary is not fully repre-safe to show thy readiness to rectify tl sented here: and, however the charter was things which they made appear were am received, yet it was not with such unanimity nor hast thou showed thy particular objecti as is alleged, because diminutive of former to the bills, which, with great care and cha privileges; neither was it prepared by the were then prepared, for confirming thy c house of representatives, but done in great ters to this city and country, respecting 1 haste."
privileges and property, and for settling “ We are not striving for grants of power, affirmation instead of oaths: but on the of but what are essential to the administration hand, we found, to our great disappointm of * justice, and agreeable to an English con- that thou gave credit to wrong insinuati stitution : and if we have not been in posses- against them, as appears by thy letter fi sion of this these twenty-four years, we know Hyde-Park, dated the twenty-sixth of where to place the fault, and shall only say, twelfth month, 1704–5, wherein thou trea it is high time we were in the enjoyment of
some particulars very unfriendly, and with our rights."
any just grounds blamed the people's rej And lastly, the said assembly having drawn sentatives, who, we perceive by their i up two several remonstrances to the proprie- ceedings, were ready to support the gove tary, reciting the particulars of their griev- ment under thy administration, and desired ances and complaints against the said go-thing but to have their just rights, privileg vernor, took occasion in the last of them, dat- and properties confirmed, the judicatories ed June 10, 1707, to express themselves as gularly established, the magistracy supp] follows.
with men of virtue and probity, and the wh “We, and the people we represent, being constitution so framed, that the people ca still grieved and oppressed with the mal-ad- quakers might have a share with other Ch ministration and practices of thy deputy, and tian people in the government, which tl the ill carriage, unwarrantable proceedings, always gave them an expectation of, . and great exactions of thy secretary, are like which they justly claim as a point of rię to be destroyed by the great injustice and ar- not for the sake of honour, but for the è bitrary oppressions of thy evil ministers, who pressing of vice, &c.” abuse the powers given thee by the crown,
To wade through the whole of this pro and we suppose have too much prevailed up cial controversy which, at several repris on thee to leave us hitherto without relief.
lasted till Gookin was superseded in the y “ That the assembly which sat here on the 1717, and replaced by William Keith, I 25th of the sixth month, 1704, agreed upon cer- (afterward sir William Keith, Bart.) wo tain heads or particulars, which, according to be a task of great prolixity, and what con the order of that day, were drawn up in a re- quently might prove as tedious to the rea presentation, and was signed by the speaker, as laborious to the writer. and sent thee by a passenger in John Guy's
Enough has been recited, to show u brigantine, who was taken into France, from what terms Mr. Penn was first followed whence the same representation was conveyed his flock, as a kind of patriarch, to Pennsy) to thy hands; whereby thou art put in mind, nia; as also, what failures in his conduct
wards them were complained of by the * The governor had rejected the bill proposed by the and as to the conduct of the several ass assembly for establishing courts of justice, &c. and had blies, which, in the several periods of this done it by an ordinance of his own.
terval, maintained this controversy, a bare
Lastly, that the reader may have a general fusal of their proceedings is in general suffi- idea of those assemblies, represented in procient for their justification.
prietary language as so refractory and turbuMen they were; passions and interests they lent, so pragmatical and assuming, let him acconsequently had; and, if they were some- cept of a passage out of one of their own patimes carried away a little too far by them, it pers to governor Evans, in which they thus is obvious the passions and interests of others characterize themselves. “ And though we worked up the ferment first, and never relent- are mean men, and represent a poor colony, ed to the last.
yet as we are the immediate grantees of one It is true, an over rigid performance of con- branch of the legislative authority of this proditions is not to be expected of government, vince, (which we would leave to our posterity and seldom can be exacted from it: but then as free as it was granted, we ought to have if the representative part is not tenacious, al- been, and do expect to be more civilly treated most to a fault, of the rights and claims of the by him that claims the other branch of the people, they will in a course of time lose their same authority, and under the same royal very pretensions to them.
grant, and has his support from us and the Against Logan, the proprietary's minister, people we represent. stands upon record, still unanswered, thirteen It is by this time apparent enough, that articles of malversation, by way of impeach- though the proprietary and popular interests ment, which the governor (Evans) found spring from one and the same source, they dimeans to evadē, against the repeated offers of vide as they descend: that every proprietary the assembly to produce their witnesses and governor, for this reason, has two masters; fasten their proofs upon him: and against the one who gives him his commission, and one governor himself, twelve in the shape of re- who gives him his pay: that he is on his good monstrances, which argue him loose in prin-behaviour to both: that if he does not fulfil ciple, arbitrary in disposition, and scandalous with rigor every proprietary command, howin his private life and deportment.
ever injurious to the province or offensive to | So unpopular was he, that an unanimous the assembly, he is recalled: that if he does vote of thanks to the proprietary was passed not gratify the assembly in what they think on his being removed, almost before his face, they have a right to claim, he is certain to for he was still a resident among them: and live in perpetual broils, though uncertain wheas he had been Logan's screen, so his succes- ther he shall be enabled to live at all: and sor, Gookin, was little better than Logan's that, upon the whole, to be a governor upon tool. The first had the name; the latter the such terms, is to be the most wretched thing power; and by the help of the council, spur- alive. red him on, or reined him in, as he pleased. Sir William Keith could not be ignorant
Both were necessitous, consequently crav- of this; and therefore, however he was ining alike; and having each considered him- structed here at home, either by his princiself first, and the proprietary next, had little pal or the lords of trade, resolved to govern consideration left for the crown, and none at himself when he came upon the spot, by the all for the people.
governing interest there: so that his admiIf Evans adventured to act in many re- nistration was wholly different from that of his spects as if there was neither charter nor as- two predecessors. sembly, or, rather, as if he was authorized by With as particular an eye to his own parhis commission to do what he pleased in con- ticular emolument, he did indeed make his tempt of both, (as appears by his arbitrary dis- first address to the assembly: but then all he mission of one assembly, merely because they said was in popular language : he did not so could not be brought to obey his dictature) much as name the proprietary: and his hints Gookin after his example, and at the instance were such as could not be misunderstood, that of Logan, declared another assembly to be no in case they would pay him well, he would assembly, and refused to hold any further cor- serve them well. respondence with them: and yet when he was The assembly, on the other hand, had sense on the point of being recalled, he was both enough to discern, that this was all which mean enough and desperate enough to con- could be required of a man who had a family vene the assembly, purposely to make them to maintain with some degree of splendour, this laconic proposition, viz. “ That, for the and who was no richer than plantation golittle time he had to stay, he was ready to do vernors usually are: in short, they believed the country all the service he could :—and in him, were liberal to him, and the returns that they might be their own carvers, in case he annually made them were suitable to the they would in some measure provide for his confidence they placed in him : so that the going back to seek another employment.” of proper operation of one master-spring kept the which, however, they made no other use than whole machine of government, for a considerto gratify him with a present of two hundred able period of time, in a more consistent mopounds.
tion than it had ever known before.
Of all political cements reciprocal interest | and private instructions to Keith, not only to is the strongest; and the subject's money is reinstate him, but in effect, to be governed never so well disposed of, as in the mainte- by him, as implicitly as Gookin had been nance of order and tranquillity, and the pur- governed before. chase of good laws; for which felicities Keith, on the other hand, being a man of Keith's administration was deservedly memo too much spirit to submit to such treatment, rable.
and presuming beside, that his services to Under proprietary displeasure, however, by and interest in the colony, and his connexions the resentment and artifice of Logan, the pro- with the most considerable men in it, would prietary secretary, excited and aggravated by uphold him against all opposition whatsoever, some neglects and mistakes of his own, he communicated all to the assembly, together sunk at last; after what manner, it may not be with his own answers: and this he thought altogether unuseful to intimate.
was the more incumbent on him, because La When Mr. Penn died in the year 1718, he gan had already been making his efforts to left his hold of the province (which was much stir up a party against him. incumbered, by a mortgage on one hand, and Logan, upon this, commences advocate in by a transfer of it to the crown for ten thou- form for the proprietary interest; presents a sand pounds, of which he had received two written plea on its behalf to the assembly, thousand pounds, on the other) in the hands justifying therein all the restrictions laid on of trustees, namely, his widow, Henry Gould- the governor by those instructions, (which ney, Joshua Gee, and his all-sufficient secre- will be in the next session explained) and tary Logan.
whether by chance or design, it is hard to The difficulties thus resting in his family pronounce, suffered the secret of the quarrel were very well known in the province; not- to escape, by insinuating, that the proprietary, withstanding which, the inhabitants, satisfied during his absence, had not received one with their governor, persevered in all duties penny either to himself or his family from the to them; nor seemed to entertain a thought to government, whereas others had received their disadvantage.
large sums. Logan and his creatures were the only mal The assembly, however, not being in a hucontents; and why they were so will be made mour to pay two government subsidies insufficiently obvious. The governor and as- stead of one, when exempted by the original sembly in concurrence, could govern the pro- article of quit-rents from the obligation of vince without his participation ; so he remain- paying any, did not so much as take notice ed without importance to either, till this share of this point; but on the contrary, closing of the trust enabled him to interpose, and en- with the governor, desired his concurrence titled him to be heard, at the expense of both. with them, and offered their concurrence to
In the second year after Keith's arrival, Lo-him, in withstanding whatever was in the gan had divided his council against him, and said instructions contained, repugnant to carried off a majority; and ever after had re- their charter, or inconsistent with their pripresented him in his despatches, as having sub- vileges. stituted his own interest in the place of the The governor himself also became an adproprietary's, and confederated with the as- vocate for the province, and laid before the sembly to make both branches of the legisla- assembly a written defence of the constituture equally subservient to popular purposes. tion thereof, as well as of the late proprieta
Subtle, however, as he was, and practised ry's character, in answer to Logan's memoin all the arts of political disguise, he could rial; and the session was concluded most not long conceal himself from the penetration triumphantly on the governor's side: for the of Keith. Thus having been detected (as house not only agreed to a remonstrance, in Keith says*) in aggravating, and even in alter- answer to the widow Penn's private instrucing certain minutes of the council-proceedings tions, as they were called; but moreover for the purposes before specified : and, in full gratified him for his extraordinary services confidence of proprietary protection, defend- with a thousand pounds. ing himself therein, with much personal abuse The controversy continued notwithstandagainst the governor; the latter dismissed ing; and both parties bestirred themselves him from his post as secretary, and substituted equally in order to make proselytes. Logan another in his place.
seemed more humble than before, but never With this, and a variety of other complaints was more confident. Keith never was so all of the same tendency, Logan therefore much in pain for his own stability, and yet made a voyage to England, soon after he be- never seemed to have less apprehensions. came a trustee, and there made his court so In proportion, however, as it became more effectually to the widow, &c. that they and more probable, that he would be laid aside, freighted him back with letters of reproof, he became less and less considered; and a * Governor Keith's letter to the widow Penn, Sep
breach between him and the speaker Lloyd, tember 24, 1724.
so often mentioned, and who had, even in
print, acted the part of a second to him, be- | added to this unfortunate list; concerning came as fatal to him as it was fortunate to whom the least that can be said, is, that either Logan.
none but men of fortune shall be appointed to When the next assembly met, it soon ap- serve in such dignified offices: or otherwise, peared, that though the governor used the that, for the honour of government itself
, such same patriot-language to it, he had not the as are recalled without any notorious impusame ascendancy over it. Two several ne- tation on their conduct, should be preserved gatives were put, upon two several motions from that wretchedness and contempt which to furnish him, the first with six hundred they have been but too frequently permitted pounds, the second with five hundred pounds, to fall into, for want even of a proper subsisttowards his support. No more than four hun- ence. dred pounds could be obtained: and, notwith The reader is desired to pardon this distanding all engines and all devices were em- gression, if it is one. It was necessary to ployed, no farther compensation could be pro- show, that the province of Pennsylvania, when cured for him.
well governed, is easily governed; and that It is equally the lot of this nation to be whichever branch of the legislature inflames more specious than virtuous, more splendid the proprietary jealousy, or interferes with than consistent, and to abound more in politi- the proprietary interest, the result is the same: cians than philosophers. Keith had more of the obnoxious assembly is reprimanded and the former than the latter in his composition, vilified, and as before observed, the obnoxious though he was neither in any eminent degree. governor is recalled. A politician would not have furnished his ad So that, unless the province stoops to be versaries with a plea to excuse his removal, loaded with a triple tier of subsidies; namely, by communicating a private paper to a popu- one for the public service, ordinary and exlar assembly. A philosopher, governed by traordinary, one for the governor's annual apprinciple, and proof against passion, would pointments, and one for the gratification of not have been in the power of any issue the proprietaries and their creatures, it seems whatsoever: and if the assembly had been reasonable to conclude it is never to enjoy capable of consistency, they would have set any established state of tranquillity. a lustre on his dismission, by accompanying And now, in addition to the points of proit with all the douceurs in the power of the prietary encroachment and proprietary reprovince to have heaped upon him, that other sentment already mentioned, we are naturalgovernors might have thought it worth their ly led to such other points of controversy, as at while to proceed on his plan.
various times have arisen for want of suffiInstead of which, on the first intelligence cient foresight and sufficient preventatives ; of a new governor, which was as carefully and of which several are unhappily in agitaimparted to them, as concealed from him, tion at this very day. they even affected to procrastinate the busi It cannot but be recollected, that Mr. Penn, ness of the province; and when upbraided by in his discourse with his joint adventurers, Keith with this backwardness, and, not with concerning reserved rents for the support of out some mixture of indignation, required to government, made a remarkable distinction begive the public a testimonial of his adminis- tween his two capacities of proprietary and tration, they proceeded in it, as if rather con- governor: and from hence, as well as from strained than inclined; and at last took care the nature of the trust, it must obviously fol. to say as little as possible, though they had low, that when he withdrew himself to Engroom to say so much.
land, and transferred the government to his In short, after a nine years'administration, deputies, those deputies could not but be posunembarrassed with any one breach between sessed of all the powers originally vested, by the governor and assembly; and, as acknow- the crown, in him. Adroit as he was at reledged by the latter, productive of much po- finements, he could not do by his trust as he sitive good to the province, they parted with did by his land ;-withhold a reserve of reciprocal coldness, if not disgust: Keith dis- power, and, like the drunken sailors in the daining to follow Gookin's example in desir- play, appoint a viceroy, and retain a power to ing a benevolence; and they not having con- be viceroy over him. sideration enough left for him to offer it. And yet even Mr. Penn himself in his com
There is no man, long or much conversant mission to Evans, a man, as we have seen, in this overgrown city, who hath not often determined enough to push any proprietary, found himself in company with the shades of and defeat any popular point whatsoever, departed governors, doomed to wander ont could venture to slip the following clause inthe residue of their lives, full of the agoniz- to his commission, to wit: “ saving always to ing remembrance of their passed eminence, ani the severe sensation of present neglect. scended to act a part neither becoming nor prudent: Sir William Keith, upon his* return, was procuring himself to be returned as an assembly man,
and taking all the measures in his power to divide the * He staid in Philadelphia some time after his being province, embarrass the governor, and distress the displaced ; and, seduced by his resentments, conde-prietaries. Vol. II....D
me and my heirs, our final assent to all such | vernor's part: that thou make no speech, nor bills as thou shalt pass into laws in the said go- send any written message to the assembly, vernment, &c."
but what shall be first approved in council ; The assembly, however, to whom this com- that thou receive all messages from them in mission was communicated, were shrewd council, if practicable at the time; and shall enough to start the following doubt upon it, return no bills to the house, without the adand to send it by way of message to the coun- vice of the council; nor pass any whatsoever cil, to wit: - whether the said vote is void in into a law, without the consent of a majority itself, and does not vacate the rest of the said of that board, &c.” commission or render it invalid ?" And the What, therefore, the governor's bond has council,with the proprietary's eldest son at the not been sufficient to obtain, this new expehead, and secretary Logan at the rear of it, dient was to extort. If the governor would were so startled at it, that, in order to evade not act as required, he was thus to be disabled the last inference, they found themselves un- from acting at all: and after so many varider a necessity to return the following answer. ous frames of government had been granted
“ We of the council, whose names are here and regranted, proprietary will and pleasure unto subscribed, are of opinion, that the said was to be the last resort of all. saving is void in itself: and that those bills In vain both governor and assembly freely which the present lieutenant-governor shall and fully remonstrated against such an inthink fit to pass into laws, and cause the pro- novation, in a government supposed to be prietary's great seal to be affixed thereunto, guarded by charter against all innovations cannot afterwards be vacated or annulled by whatsoever ; more especially such as were the proprietary, without assent of the assem- neither consistent with the rights of the peobly of this province."
ple, the powers already vested in the gover nThe next piece of practice, to answer theor, nor the respect due to the crown. same purpose, that was found out, was to im Logan discovered the assembly were not pose certain conditions of government on the authorized by charter to advise, though they deputy, under the penalty of a certain sum. were to enact ; because the word advice was This was first submitted to by Keith, and has not to be found in that last given to them; been a rule to all his successors, with this dif- that governors were not to be trusted to act ference, that whereas the penalty exacted without advice; consequently the said exfrom him was but one thousand pounds ster- pedient to bridle them was a good one; and ling, it has been since raised to two or three if we may judge by events, his sophistry has thousand pounds.
given the law ever since. If ever the case of this colony should come From what has been thus far recited, it is before parliament, which is not altogether im- obvious, that the proprietary of Pennsylvania probable, no doubt these conditions will be was of too little consideration here at home, called for; and if they should then be found to be of much use to the province either as a irreconcilable with the charter, and a check protector or advocate; and yet, that he was upon the legislative, altogether unconstitu- there so much above the level of his freemen tional and illegal, the wisdom of the nation and tenants, that, even in their legislative cawill, no doubt, pronounce upon such a tres-pacity confederated with the governor, they pass according to the heinousnes of it. could hardly maintain their rights they were
Again : the widow Penn, in her private in- so many ways entitled to, against the artifices structions to sir William Keith, having ad- and encroachments of his emissaries. mitted and complained, that the powers of le As lord of the soil, is the light he is next gislature were lodged in the governor and as to be considered. The charter Mr. Penn sembly, without so much as a negative re- obtained of the crown, comprehended a far served to the proprietary when absent, pro- greater extent of territory, than he thought ceeds to avow, that it was never intended (by fit to take up of the Indians at his first purthe proprietary must be understood] the said chase. governor and assembly should have the ex And even in the very infancy of his coloercise of these powers; as also to pronounce ny, it was by act of assembly inconsiderately, it a dangerous invention of Keith's to enact because unconditionally, provided, that in case laws in conjunction with the assembly, and any person should presume to buy land of the transmit them directly to the king's ministers natives, within the limits of the province, &c. without any other check; and then, after thus without leave first obtained from the proprie. arrogantly interposing between the king and tary, the bargain and purchase so made should his lieges of this province, clenches the whole be void. with the following injunction; " therefore, for Rendered thus the only purchaser, he reckremedy of this grievance, it is required, that oned he might always accommodate himself thou advise with the council, upon every at the Indian market, on the same terms, with meeting or adjournment of the assembly, what quantity of land he pleased; and till which requires any deliberation on the go-I the stock in hand, or such parts of it as he