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ould be imputed to no other cause than a de- and tacitly upbraiding the governor for having ire to have a plausible excuse for not paying suddenly altered the whole connexion be
proper regard to his majesty's commands; tween Pennsylvania and Virginia, in consehat even on account of the scruples urged, quence of such supposed misconduct of theirs : le had looked on governor Dinwiddie's re- and concluding their replication in these uisition as a very lucky circumstance; see- words : as governor Dinwiddie had laid beng, that a requisition from himself would have fore his assembly the earl of Holdernesse's et the province in the front of opposition ; letter, sent, as we presume, in the same terms nd a refusal from them, would have exposed to all the colonies on the continent, we judged I to the contempt and derision, as well of the it most prudent to wait till the assembly of french as our Indian allies; that as the French that government had enabled him to act in vow these hostilities, so the Indians, menaced obedience to the royal commands, especially y them, most earnestly besought us, to build as they had that letter under their consideralaces of refuge, to which their wives and tion from the first of November last, as aphildren might repair for safety, and also to pears by the journal of their house of burssist them against their enemies; that in- gesses now before us; but we are now called tead of being governed by the example of upon as principals, and the governor is pleased he neighbouring colonies, nothing remained to inform us, that he has undoubted assurance put to give the necessary supplies, and there- that part of his majesty's dominions within the by set the example to them, this province government is at this time invaded by the laving been first invaded, and consequently in subjects of a foreign prince, who have erected he most immediate danger ; that without this, forts within the same; and calls upon us, purthey could neither keep their treaties with the suant to his majesty's orders in the present Indians, nor demonstrate their duty and loy- emergency, to grant such supplies as may ulty to his majesty; that having now done his enable him to resist those hostile attempts, luty, whatever ill consequences might hap- and repel force by force: but, as it appears to pen, were to be laid at their door; that with us that the governor is enjoined by the royal regard to the refusal of the proprietaries, to orders, not to act as a principal beyond the contribute any part of their Indian expenses, undoubted limits of his government; and as, it was true, they had refused to do it in the by the papers and evidences sent down and manner expected, and they had given their referred to by the governor, those limits have reasons; but that the proposal made by him, not been clearly ascertained to our satisfaction; the governor, by their order, in the years 1750 we fear the altering our connexions with his and 1751, in regard to the building a strong majesty's colony of Virginia, and the precipitrading house near the place then invaded and tate call upon us, as the province invaded, possessed by the French, could not be forgot ; cannot answer any good purpose at this time, which generous offer*had the assembly thought and therefore we are now inclined to make a fit to close with, it might, at a small expense, short adjournment.” have prevented all the mischiefs impending, The adjournment they proposed was to the and secured a country to the English, which sixth of May; and, before they broke up, the probably might not be recovered without a governor again addressed them with another heavy charge, and the loss of many lives. message, in which he also affected to wave
Whether the hostilities committed by the several things personal to himself, which, at French were or were not committed within another time, he might have thought it incumthe bounds of Pennsylvania, became the great bent on him to take notice of; and proceeded question.—The assembly called for evidence; to tell them, that had they examined with the governor imparted all he could collect; their usual accuracy the gentleman, who by and, after a strict examination of the premises, his appointment attended their house, and the assembly chose only to glance at the in- compared their testimony with the written flammatories thrown in their way, and to pro- papers at several times communicated to themi, fess their readiness to concur with the go- he thought it would have appeared so clear to vernor in whatever might preserve the har- them, that the French had lately erected one mony between the several branches of the or more forts far within the limits of the prolegislature, so necessary at all times, and es- vince, that nothing less than an actual menpecially at a crisis so important, so far as the suration could have made it more evident; preservation of their rights and the duty they that even taking it for granted, however, the owed their constitutents would permit. Not forementioned encroachments were not withdeparting, however, from their former senti- in the said limits, yet he, having been informments, nor admitting any one of the articles ed by the governor of Virginia, that hostile laid against them; but, on the contrary, attempts had been made on part of his majesmaintaining, that the secretary of the state's ty's dominions, and called upon him for the asletter could be the only rule of their conduct; sistance of this province, it was equally their
* See the assembly's answer to this charge hereafter, duty, to grant such supplies as the present in the time of governor Morris.
exigency of affairs required; and, that he
could not but be apprehensive, that so long an voting affirmatively; and, on the contrar adjournment would frustrate his majesty's those who had hitherto voted affirmatively g just expectations from them.
ing over to the remainder of the negatives.This message was dated March 9, and And this apparent perplexity was, in their ri April 2 we find them sitting by his special ply to the governor's message, thus accounte summons again: the occasion of which was for: " And we now beg leave to inform th the next day explained in the usual way by governor, that we have had that message ui message, as follows: “I am now to acquaint der our serious consideration ever since you, gentlemen, that since your adjournment came down to the house ; but after all our de I have received from governor Dinwiddie bates thereupon, we find that nearly one hal the several papers herewith laid before you; of the members are, for various reasoni by which it will appear, that he is taking all against granting any money to the king's us imaginable pains for the security of his ma- at this time; and those who are for granting jesty's dominions, so far as the provision made differ so widely in their sentiments concern by his assembly will permit him to act; and ing the sum, that there seems at present n he is very impatient to know the issue of possibility of their agreeing, except in such : your deliberations on this subject. I cannot sum, as, in the judgment of many of them, i therefore doubt but, that agreeable to the pro- quite disproportionate to the occasion: there fession in your message of the twenty-seventh fore, and that the members may have an op of February, of being ready and willing to portunity of consulting their constituents or demonstrate your duty and loyalty, by giving this important affair, we are now inclined to such sums of money to the king's use, upon adjourn to the thirteenth of the next month.' all suitable occasions, as may consist with According to their adjournment, the house your circumstances, or can reasonably be ex- met again, May 6, and were informed by the pected from this province;' I say I cannot governor of the arrival of a body of French doubt but you will, with the greatest alacrity, forces, consisting of upwards of one thousand lay hold on the present opportunity of evinc- men, before the fort building by the Virgini ing the sincerity of those professions, by ans on the Ohio, and the surrender thereof granting such an aid to his majesty, as may He also laid before them the despatches he comport with the circumstances of the pro- had severally received from governor Din vince, and be suitable to the exigence of the widdie of Virginia, concerning the state of service. And, in the doing of this, I hope you that province, and the succours he wanted will be guided rather by the importance of and expected; and from governor Delancy the concern, than by the example of other co- of New York, concerning the interest of his lonies: it being found by experience to be a majesty's colonies in general, as well as of very ill-judged piece of economy to cramp an Pennsylvania in particular; and said, “ he enterprise of this nature in the article of sup- hoped they would have their due weight with plies; and that whatever is given on such oc- them in their deliberations and advice.” The casions, short of being sufficient to accomplish proposals made by the governors of Boston the ends proposed, becomes, for the most part, and New York for an union of the several coa waste of so much treasure, without answer- lonies in Indian affairs, he then recommended ing any of the purposes for which it was in to them earnestly, as agreeable to his own tended.
sentiments, and likely to be productive of “I have at present only to add my request, more real benefit, at much less expense than that whatever you intend to do on this occa- the method hitherto in use of making fresion, may receive all the despatch the nature quent and distinct presents to the Indians, &c. of the thing will admit of; the season of the And he desired to be enabled to instruct the year for action advancing so fast, that unless commissioners to be sent from their province, our measures be speedily taken, they will, I to concur with those of the other colonies, in fear, be rendered altogether unserviceable.” case a reasonable plan should be offered.
Upon the fifth, after many debates, it was A joint bill for granting an aid to the king, resolved, by a small majority, that a sum of and replacing torn and ragged bills of credit, money should be given for the king's use; was the result of their first day's debate; and and what the sum should be, occasioned many after several divisions, the several sums were debates more. Twenty thousand pounds be settled at ten thousand pounds for the king, ing proposed on the ninth, it passed in the ne- and twenty thousand for the other purpose. gative by a majority of twenty-five to eight; The commons of Great Britain will not reduced to fifteen thousand pounds, it passed suffer a money-bill to be amended: the lords in the negative twenty-three to ten; reduced may reject, his majesty may refuse his assent, to ten thousand pounds, it passed in the nega- but what they give, they give upon their own tive twenty-two to eleven; and again reduc- terms. ed to five thousand pounds the next day, it In Pennsylvania a money-bill exacted from again passed in the negative twenty-two to the province, by all the considerations which
Those who had hitherto led the house, could affect generous minds, or intimidate
weak ones, the dread of an enemy at the to strike the sum of ten thousand pounds, to gates, and of incurring both the royal dis- give the same to the king's use, and to sink pleasure and the public odium, for not making it by an extension of the excise act for a farà seasonable provision against his approach- ther term of ten years. The governor will es, could not be accepted without amend- be pleased to consider, that his predecessor, ments.
to whom the mentioned instruction was givEven this bill, at such a crisis offered, and en, did afterwards pass an act of the same for such a service, was returned by the go- kind, extending the excise act ten years vernor, with amendments prefaced with a (now near expired) for a grant of five thouwritten message, of which the two following sand pounds only; and we never heard that were the most material paragraphs : viz. he incurred the royal displeasure for so doing.
“Considering the royal instruction laid be- As the sum we grant is double, we had no fore the assembly last year, it must be appa- expectation that our proposing the same term rent that I have, merely from a desire to would have been deemed extravagant. The oblige you, consented to raise the money in- governor thinks four years sufficient; but, as tended for his majesty's use in a manner by the representatives are best acquainted with you proposed. And have prolonged the cur- the circumstances of the people, and must rency of the bills of credit, to be issued in themselves, as a part of the people, bear a virtue of the bill now under consideration, as share of all burdens laid upon them, it seems far as I think consistent with my own safety. not reasonable to suppose they will lay such
“ And, as the fund to be established upon burdens unnecessarily. They now offer ten the foot of my proposed amendment will be thousand pounds to the crown, and propose a more than sufficient to repay the sum grant- manner of raising it, that they judge most ed by the bill, I can see no reason for extend- easy and convenient for the people they reing the act of excise longer than four years present: and, if the governor thinks fit to rebeyond the date of its present limitation, or fuse it, merely from an opinion that a shorter for burdening the people unnecessarily with term for sinking the bills would be more easy a tax that possibly may not be wanted.” for the people, we cannot but suppose, that,
And these proposed amendments restored since the messages in which he so warmly unanimity to the house; for whereas they had recommended this affair to us, he has, on far. been divided many ways in the course of the ther advices, or better consideration, changed bill, they now acted with one will and one his sentiments of the importance of the prevoice, in rejecting that concerning the excise, sent occasion for supplies, and doth not now which manifestly took its rise from proprietary think the danger so imminent, or the emerconsiderations only; and for the sake of which, gency so great or so real, as he then appreeither the service of the public was to be neg- hended it to be." lected, or the province to give up its under They also intimated at the same time, that, standing. The latter exceeded the power of it being an inconvenient season for the mempersuasion; and the former they left those to bers to be absent from their respective homes, answer for, to whom it belonged.
they desired the governor to let them know Their reply to the governor on this occa- his result as soon as possible. sion was as follows: “ The house are not in And upon the next day but one this result
clined to enter into any dispute with the go came, and proved to be of a nature altogether $ vernor on the subject of his proposed amend- extraordinary. Having charged the assembly ments to the money-bill; as the representa- with laying down a position in their last tives of the people have an undoubted right message, derogatory to the rights of governto judge, and determine, not only of the sum ment; in maintaining, that the representatives to be raised for the use of the crown, but of of the people have an undoubted right to judge the manner of raising it.
and determine, not only of the sum to be rais“ The governor, in his message of the nine-ed for the use of the crown but of the manner teenth of February, was pleased to tell us, of raising of it, he first acknowledges that * That, if the house should be of opinion that right, and then whittles it away, by arguing, there will be a necessity to strike a farther it was not an exclusive right; one half of the sum in bills of credit, to defray the charges of legislative powers being vested in the goraising supplies for his majesty's service in vernor. After which he goes on to say,
that this time of imminent danger, and would cre- he had neither objected to the sum, though ate a proper fund or funds, for sinking the he wished it had been larger and more seasame in a few years, he would concur with sonably granted, nor to the manner of raising us in passing a law for that purpose, think- it, though he could have also wished it had ing himself sufficiently warranted so to do in not been by compelling him to depart from cases of real emergency.'
the letter of his majesty's instruction, but only “On this assurance, the house have pre- to the extension of the fund, whereby the mo pared a bill, and presented it to the governor, ney is proposed to be repaid, to an unnecesVOL. LI....G
sary length, by which a tax was to be laid and adds, that he well knew the state of their continued upon the people without the least funds, and that the loan-office itself, were the apparent necessity : and that he was sorry to money duly collected, was able to furnish a find, they were not satisfied with a fund by much larger sum than the sum granted upon which the ten thousand pounds granted to his this important occasion, independent of the majesty would be repaid in the easiest man interest hereafter to accrue, &c. That such ner in six years, and leave a surplus of seve- being the favourable state of their finances, ral thousand pounds in their hands to be dis- in declining to do what his majesty so justly posed of as they thought fit; and that, for the expected from them, merely because he, the said ten thousand pounds so granted, they governor, would not wholly depart from his were desirous of obtaining more than three instruction, they became more justly chargetimes the sum for themselves: that the ex- able with a wanton disregard of his majesty's ample of any former governor was not to be a commands, than he could possibly be with rule for him: but that, however, if they would the lukewarmness imputed to him, which he enlarge the sum given for his majesty's use, had the greatest detestation of: and with a he would extend the time for repaying it mixture of persuasion and menace, he came in the same proportion already allowed in his to a conclusion as follows, “ let me therefore, amendment, which he should not otherwise gentlemen, recommend to your serious attenrecede from; that it was possible more might tion, a review of your conduct upon the prebe concealed under this solicitude for so long sent occasion, and if you shall find that you an extension of the excise than they were have been too precipitate in the resolution willing should be discovered:—and here a contained in your message, let me entreat paragraph occurs, which does indeed make a you to rectify it before it be too late; for, as discovery, and which will be of singular use I must be obliged soon to lay this whole transto the intelligent reader through the whole action before his majesty, it would give me course of the controversy, viz. “It is well the greatest pleasure that both you and I known, that by the laws now in force, the might receive his gracious approbation of our public money is solely in the disposal of the services. But if, contrary to my hopes, you assembly, without the participation of the go should still persist in refusing to accept of my vernor; nevertheless, while these acts, by amendment, and the bill should by that means which money was raised, were of short dura- be lost, I cannot but apprehend some unhappy tion, the governor had now and then an op, consequences to the province from your exportunity of obliging the assembly in a very traordinary behaviour.” essential manner by a renewal of those acts, There is, one would think, a magical power and thereby of making himself acceptable to in government, capable not only of altering, them; but to extend them to such an unrea- but even reversing the forms, colours, and sonable length of time as you now desire, essences of things; to common sense it seems might be to render him in a great measure evident, that the people give, and the governor unnecessary to them during the continuance refuses to accept ; and that the said governor, of those acts, but upon terms very disagreeable by avowing proprietary and deputy-governto himself, as well as injurious to his consti- ment-reasons for such his refusal, avows, that tuents: to this condition, therefore, I will not the king's service and the people's safety are be the means of reducing any successor of but subordinate considerations—but our own mine; and this circumstance is of no small eyes are not to be trusted it seems-none of additional weight with me to adhere to my this is so if the people do not do all that is amendment." He then desires them to ob- required of them, and in the manner required, serve, that the question between them, is not, they do nothing; and all the mischiefs that which is best acquainted with the circum- ensue are to be laid at their door. stances of the people? but whether it was The assembly were not, however, to be reasonable to burden them with an unneces- amused by the waving of a government-wand; sary tax? assures them, they are exceedingly but on the contrary, having bestowed as much mistaken, if they really supposed he had either time upon the affair as was necessary for a changed his sentiments with respect to the thorough discussion of it, came to a course importance of the present occasion for sup- of spirited resolutions; of which the most plies, or that he was less apprehensive of the material and perspicuous are those which dangers the province was then exposed to follow, viz. from the invasion of a foreign power than be “That the raising of money for support of fore; makes a merit of having gone farther government and other public uses, by an exin his condescensions to please them, than he cise on spirituous liquors, hath been practised was warranted to do, by the king's instruc- in this province, with very little intermission, tion, unless they made an addition to the sup- for more than thirty years past, and hath not ply, by extending their currency a year longer been found, communibus annis, to produce than the utmost term allowed to the eastern more money than was necessary for those uses. governments by the late act of parliament; “ That the raising money by such excise,
has by experience been found less burden- an opportunity of making himself acceptable, some to the people, than the method of poll appears to this house to be sacrificing too and pound rates; and hence the load of pub- much, to considerations of uncertain and small lic expense hath been more cheerfully borne, moment. government more liberally supported, those “That we have now offered the governor a who serve the public better and more punctu- bill for granting ten thousand pounds to the ally paid, and greater sums given from time king's use, to be sunk by extending the excise to time to the king's use, than could otherwise for ten years, (a bill of the like tenor of that of have well been raised.
1746 (passed by governor Thomas] for grant“ That if the excise act be extended but ing the sum of five thousand pounds to the four years, and the sum of ten thousand pounds king's use, to be sunk by extending the excise is to be sunk thereby in that term, yearly for ten years) to which he has been pleased provincial taxes by poll and pound rates (al- to refuse his assent. ways more grievous to the people) must pro “That as the governor [in his message of bably in a short time become necessary, to de- the 1st of March last] acknowledged the fray the usual and contingent expenses of the term of ten years for extending the excise to government.
sink the five thousand pounds, was a short “That if there really were, which is very space of time, and that there was not the uncertain, so great a sum outstanding due to least probability of that act's producing any the public, as if collected, would be in the dis- of the inconveniences complained of; the position of the house, and sufficient to answer same term of ten years for extending the exthe present emergency; yet, to enforce the cise to sink ten thousand pounds, must, in collection suddenly, by seizing and selling the consequence, be allowed a 'short space of estates of the delinquent borrowers, in this time:' and, the bill he now refuses being of time of scarcity of money, when so many the same tenor, there cannot be the least plantations being offered at once to sale, could probability of its producing the inconveniennot probably find a sufficient number of good ces complained of; the preventing of which purchasers, and must consequently sell for for the future appears clearly [to the go much less than their real value, would be cruel, vernor) to have been the sole end and purpose oppressive, and ruinous to the people. of the royal instruction.'
“ That the right of judging and determin “That the governor having, as he hoped, ing, not only of the sum necessary to be rais- [to use his own words] «incontestably proved, ed for any public service, but of the time and that the true and real intention of the royal manner of raising it, and term for paying it; instruction could have been no other than to is solely in the representatives of the people; guard against the abuses enumerated in the and that the governors of this province have body of it; and the act for granting five thounot, nor ever had, nor can have, any right to sand pounds for the king's use, passed by the interfere therein, under pretence of rectifying late governor, in 1746, being of a singular mistakes, easing the people, or any other pre- and quite different nature from acts passed tence whatever.
upon ordinary occasions, could not be com" That a just, upright, and prudent admi- prehended within the meaning of the said innistration of government, will always be the struction:' the bill now offered to the governbest and most effectual means of obtaining and or for granting ten thousand pounds for the securing the affections of the people; and king's use, being also of a singular and quite : that it is neither necessary nor expedient to different nature from acts passed upon ordinary deny the present assembly the exercise of occasions, and of the same tenor with the act their just rights, that a future governor may passed in 1746, cannot be comprehended, by have an opportunity of obliging a future as the governor, (unless he has very lately sembly by permitting it.
altered his opinion) to be within the meaning " That an act of parliament made express of the royal instruction; and therefore, ly to remedy disorders in the eastern govern
“ That it is our opinion, that if the governor ments, and in which this province is neither is restricted by any instruction from passing named, nor intended, cannot by any construc- this bill, it must be by some instruction which tion be supposed binding on the governors or he has never been pleased to lay before this assemblies of Pennsylvania.
house,-and not the royal instruction, the “That to refuse a grant of ten thousand operation of which, against bills of this tenor, pounds to the king's use at this critical junc. he hath so effectually invalidated. ture, when the service of the crown, and the " That this house will this day adjourn to welfare, present and future, of all the Bçitish the nineteenth day of the month called Aucolonies, seem to the governor so eminently gust, next.” to demand supplies, merely from an opinion in Before they adjourned, however, and withthe governor, that he can judge better than out any mention made of these resolutions, the people's representatives what is most for they addressed the governor by message; in their ease, or that a future governor may have which, having civilly and thankfully observed