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ceeding to fort Du Quesne, and had sent him “ We, rather than the least check should orders for that purpose ; and that in addition be given to his majesty's service at this time to this, he had said to him, that it would de- of imminent danger, by a matter so very tripend on those several provinces to assist colo-fling, do hereby promise and engage to pay nel Dunbar with reinforcements, provisions, five hundred pounds, money of Pennsylvania, ammunition, artillery, ordnance stores, carri- into the public stock, for the king's use, in ages, horses, and all other things to fit him lieu of what the proprietaries would pay as out for his march, &c. and that he had wrote their part of the fifty thousand pounds, were to the same effect to governor Dinwiddie and their lands to be taxed, governor Sharpe, whose assistance, with that “And as we declare the absence of the hoof Pennsylvania, he entirely relied upon at nourable the proprietaries to be our motive that extraordinary crisis ; that he must there for making this proposal, being well assured, fore recommend it to them, to enable him to that were they present it would have been do the several things so expected of them, to altogether unnecessary; and we doubt nut take the matter into immediate consideration, but they will honourably acquit every suiand give him their answer thereto, that he scriber of this expense. might send it forward to colonel Dunbar, and The house, taking it into consideration, “rethe said governors of Maryland and Virginia, solved, that such a proposal to this house is whose measures would, in a great measure, improper, as this house is destitute of the depend on what he should be enabled to do." necessary information to assess any estate
Now general Shirley himself, in the state duly, and neither can nor ought to assess the of his own conduct, which he has lately laid proprietaries' estate at the sum proposed, or at before the public, says, 1st, that colonel Dun- any other sum whatever; and as, in case the bar did not receive any orders whatever from subscribers should neglect or refuse to pay him till about the middle of August, at which the sum subscribed, it would not be in the time he had advanced far in his march to Phi- power of this house, not being a body incorladelphia; and 2dly, that the orders he then porate, to sue them for the same. But as the sent him, were to march his troops to Albany, house presumes that the said proposal may there to be ready to assist either in the expe- have arose from the subscribers judgment of dition against Niagara or Crown-point as his the equity of taxing the proprietaries' estate majesty's service should require, or at least equally with all others in this province, for cover the country in case major-general John- their common safety, ordered, that the said son should be defeated by the French, &c. proposal be sent up to the governor as a furnor does he mention one word of the assist- ther security to him, in case he should give ances he expected or required of the said his assent to the bill for raising fifty thousand provinces.
pounds for the king's use," &c. The general, nevertheless, might possibly And having on the 19th, prepared a suitable have sent such orders subsequent.
message, sent it up together with their bill, The assembly did not, however, start any to the governor, under a strong expression of scruple on this head; but, as before, took all hope, that, with this further security he would upon content; and behaved in every respect, cheerfully give his assent to it. as if they were altogether as solicitous to tax At the same time, also, in a separate mes themselves, as their proprietaries.
sage, they further apprized him, “ that they To render this undeniable, an instance of a had taken his message concerning governor very singular kind is now to be brought for- Shirley's orders into consideration ; and that ward. Certain gentlemen of Philadelphia, it was their opinion, his giving assent to their not of the assembly, to the number of twenty, bill, which they earnestly requested of him, subscribed in various proportions, the sum of would enable him to do every thing which five hundred and two pounds, ten shillings; could be reasonably expected from them.” and made a tender of it to the house with the And that he might not serve any insidious following proposal, to wit:
purpose by his message concerning Louis“We the subscribers observe, with great burg, they sent him the following answer, in concern, that the governor and assembly differ which they at once corrected his state of the in opinion, in respect to the taxing the pro- fact, by inserting the very words of governor prietaries' estate ; and lest by such difference Lawrence's letter, and left him to answer for in opinion the bill for raising fifty thousand his deviation. pounds for his majesty's service should not “ May it please the Governor, take effect:
* We have considered the governor's mes“ And as the assembly, in their message to sage of the 16th instant, with the extract from the governor, seem to be of opinion, that were the proprietaries' lands to be taxed, the sum words of the assembly by these friends of the proprieta. would not exceed five hundred pounds :*
ry; and it appears by an act afterwards passed, that five thousand pounds, and not five hundred pounds, was
looked upon and accepted as an equivalent for the pro* This however was a forced construction put on the prielaries of a sixty thousand pounds tax.
governor Lawrence's letter to governor Phipps, | impertinently and improvidently put into the in which it is observed, that if the excel scale against all the rest. lent laws prohibiting the transportation of To say all at once, his answer to the last provisions to Louisburg continue in force for proposition, as verbally delivered to the house two months longer, there is a probability that by his secretary, was in these words, viz. the governor of that place will be obliged to “Sir,—The governor having by message of present the keys of the garrison to Mr. Bos- the 14th inst. informed you, that he did not cawen.' And our governor is pleased to re- think it consistent with his power, or trust, commend it to us, to think of some proper to pass the bill for raising fifty thousand law that may most effectually prevent their pounds, without the amendments he had made being supplied from this province; but as an to it, and that he adhered to those amendments; act passed this house, and received the go- is surprised at your message of this day, to vernor's assent, at our last sitting, intituled, which he can only say, that he thinks it his an act to continue an act, intituled, an act duty to adhere still to the amendments he to prevent the exportation of provisions, naval made to that bill.” or warlike stores, from this province to cape
On the same day, also, by another message Breton, or to any other dominions of the he put them in mind of his former requisitions French king, or places at present in poss concerning a militia ; and demanded a plain sion of any of his subjects,' by which the act and categorical answer, whether they would, continued will be in force at least ten months or would not establish one, “That his majesto come, and has been, as far as we know, ef- ty and his ministers might be informed, whefectual for the purposes intended; and as the ther, at this time of danger, the province of governor has not pointed out to us any defect Pennsylvania was to be put into a posture of in that act, nor has any occurred to us, we defence or not ?" cannot at present think what law can be This convinced the house, that all expedimade more effectually to prevent that place ent was at an end; and that all the governor being supplied with provisions, &c. from this aimed at was to bewilder them if possible in province.”
another maze of controversy. To discharge And now the period was come, when all themselves, therefore, of every branch of duty, apable of conviction, were to be convinced, as far as they were permitted to do it with that, though the governor ha lavoured hoc any consistency to themselves, and regard to to establish a belief, that the uncomplying the fundamentals of their constitution, they disposition of the assembly was the only ob- first took into consideration the several petistacle to the current of public business, the tions of the frontier towns, for arms, &c., and contrary was the matter of fact; and that resolved, that a sum not exceeding one thouhaving observed obstinacy on his side never sand pounds, if so much remained in the treafailed to produce some concession on theirs, sury at the disposition of the house by the he had come to a resolution, to proceed in laws in force, should be paid into the hands the same course of exaction, till nothing re- of a committee of the house, then named, to be quired of him by his instructions was left un- by them disposed of, with the concurrence of performed; that is to say, till the assembly the governor for the time being, as should aphad nothing left to part with.
pear necessary. The shadow of a royal instruction, so long Proceeding then to the governor's verbal and so often played before their eyes, was now message concerning their money-bill; they out of the question; the governor says the pro agreed to return an answer to this effect, viz. vince is actually invaded; that a victorious" that he, having in his former answer signifienemy is on the point of ravaging it with fire ed, that he was not yet satisfied, &c. whatever and sword; the king's troops, after having he might be when he heard what they had farbeen so many ways gratified and assisted, are ther to say, which argued a suspension of his recalled; they are told they are to provide for determination, and they having since their own defence; they offer fifty thousand him a long message containing the reasons of pounds to be laid out for that purpose; the pro- their procedure, they could not but be sur prietary estate becomes liable to a demand, prised at his surprise, more especially as he computed by his friends at about five hundred had not even then returned their bill pounds, even that five hundred pounds, is of- as to his proposal for striking any sum in pa fered on the behalf of the proprietaries, by a per-money the present exigency might re few private individuals, as an expedient to re- quire, provided funds were established fo move that only difficulty out of the way: and sinking the same in five years, they had n the governor refuses it. So that, if there was funds equal to so great a sum without the as any truth in the governor's repeated asser- sistance of an equitable tax, to which th tions, the safety of the province, the interest governor would always have his objections i of the public, and the honour of the British favour of the proprietary estate; that as thi crown, were to be alike exposed and endan- proposal might lead them back into these dis gered, together with the proprietary estate, so putes, which, by the form of this bill, agree
able to the governor's advice in his speech at their sitting, they preferred a request to the the opening of the session, they had studied governor, “ that, if he had any business of imto avoid, they should be farther surprised to portance to lay before them, particularly, if receive it from him, could they find the least any application had been made to him for a reason to think he was sincerely desirous of farther supply of provisions, for the use of the having any thing done for the defence of the king's forces then gone towards Crown-point, province; and that being now convinced, no he would be pleased to lay it before them farther benefit could arise from their longer soon, as their year was near expired, and the sitting, and being to meet of course in a few time of their continuance together consequentweeks to settle the accounts of the year, they ly short.” took leave to acquaint him of their purpose to The answer they received was verbal, by adjourn to the 15th of September ensuing, in his honour's secretary, importing, 66 that the case he had no objection to that time.” government of Massachusetts-bay had ordered
Lastly, by the same members that were two thousand eight hundred men to be immeappointed to carry up this message to the go- diately raised, in addition to the one thousand vernor, they also sent another concerning a five hundred before raised for the reduction militia, in which having enumerated his se- of Crown-point; and that the governor had the veral messages in relation to the defence and day before received a letter from governor safety of the province, they waivethe point by Phipps, desiring, at the instance of the council saying, “That the elections throughout the and assembly there, an immediate supply of province being near at hand, they chose to re- provisions to be sent to Albany.” And, as if fer that point to a future assembly, and then this was not enough to ask of them, a suppleproceed as follows:—But as we find, by the mental paragraph was grafted upon it as folgovernor's result upon our bill for granting lows: "the governor has also been informed, fifty thousand pounds for the king's use, he that the government of Connecticut have raiscannot think it consistent with the trust ed fifteen hundred men, and Rhode Island one reposed in him by the proprietaries to pass hundred and fifty, in addition to the forces sent that bill, we find by experience that it can an- | by those governments against Crown-point, swer no good purpose to waste our time in who will also stand in need of a supply of propreparing bills for his assent, in which, for the visions; he therefore recommends these matcommon security and defence of the province, ters to your consideration." we apprehend it would be a high breach of Two articles, out of governor Shirley's the trust reposed in us, to exclude the propri- state of his own conduct, will come in not etaries' estate from bearing any part of the improperly here; viz. Upon Mr. Shirley's burden, and if not excluded, as the governor arrival at New York (July 4,) he found a fuli asserts, must at last be rejected by him for stop, put to the preparations for the expedition want of sufficient powers in his commission; against Crown-point, with respect to the artiand therefore (had we no other objections) cles of artillery and military stores, which the we hope the governor will judge it reasona- governments of Massachusetts-bay and New ble, after so many repeated refusals of the York had agreed to furnish between them, debills we have offered to him for granting large pending that the colonies of Connecticut, Newsums of money for the king's use, that we now Hampshire, and Rhode-Island, would
pay wait the determination of our superiors, what their proportions of the expense; but that not powers he has, or ought to have, as our go- being done, the government of New York devernor, under the royal and provincial char- clined parting with the stores, without actual ters; and what exclusive rights our proprie- payment or security given. After having retaries may be justly intitled to in the laying moved this obstacle to the expedition's proand levying of taxes for the common security ceeding, by putting into the hands of the goand defence of their estates, with all the other vernment of New York, a sufficient quantity estates within this province.”.
of the Pennsylvania provisions, as a security In answer to the first of these messages, for reimbursing them on account of the be80 far as related to the time of adjournment, fore-mentioned articles, and advanced about (with which he was verbally acquainted by one thousand pounds sterling, of his own mothe messengers) the governor was pleased to ney, towards the expense of transporting the say, “ he had no objection to that time more artillery, and ordnance-stores, in confidence of than any other; but that if he found. [on pe- being reimbursed by the New England colo rusal of the written messages then delivered nies, he embarked for Albany." to him] that the house had not given him a The reader will make his own remarks; satisfactory answer, to his messages relating at least he will infer from what passed in the to a militia, he should call them again imme-assembly of Pennsylvania before, in relation diately."
to orders said to have been received from and To the time of their own adjournment, they demands, made by general Shirley, that the had nevertheless, the grace to be indulged said assembly would now have been inexcuwith a recess. And on the third day of sable, if they had not called upon their go Vol. II....M
vernor, for governor Phipp's letter and the his reply said such a sum might have been other informations referred to upon this occa- mentioned as what it would cost in some sion; which they did by express message; men's private opinion; but not upon an esand that having been told by him in answer timate of the commissioners, nor what had to that call, that he had orders from the se- been as such sent to him. Adding, “ that cretary of state not to lay before the house any though they had numbered the making the papers but such as he pleased, they should road among their meritorious acts, they had apply to him for a sight of such orders. in effect done it out of fear of having proper
They did so, and were again refused; he representations made of their conduct at signifying that such orders being intended for home, and of an armed force being used to his own government, he thought it improper oblige the inhabitants to do this necessary to communicate them; and in the name of the work; that he had persuaded the general to secretary of state, vouching, as he himself had compound for one road instead of two, to condone before, that messages from him were a tract even that to two thirds of the breadth, sufficient foundation for them to proceed upon; and not to carry it so far by many miles as but withal recurring to what he had also of- directed by the quarter-master-general; by fered in his former message, namely, to com- which great savings were made to the promunicate to their speaker, or a few of the vince, and thanks instead of complaints were house, such parts of the information he had re- due to him, and rewards to the coinmissioners ceived from the eastward as his majesty's who had served the province in so hazardous service required.
a task so well; that he had never made such But this not proving satisfactory to the a demand as five thousand pounds, nor could house, all proceedings on this head were for it have been made by any one, because the some days at a stand; and the interval was accounts were not come in; and that now filled with a continuation of the animated con- they were come in, the charge did not amount troversy, which in the preceding session had to three thousand pounds, which was not exso highly exasperated the two branches of the travagant, considering the distance and exlegislature against each other, and which ne-pedition required in the work.” ver had been either revived, or caused, if the The assembly in their answer could not governor and his employers had not preferred be so full in their own justification, and, contheir own private views, to all the moral and sequently, in refuting the governor, as they equitable obligations of government. might have been, because the necessary docu
When the assembly had sat nine days, and ments happened at that time to be mislaid. now remained in a sort of suspense, not choos- But when those documents were recovered, ing to inflame on one hand, and willing to they did themselves ample justice, by reprinthope the governor would find reasons to abate ing the most material in an appendix to their of his unreasonable stiffness on the other; minutes. came down a long message by way of answer And among them was a letter from the said to the assembly's paper of August 19; and, commissioners to the governor, which was sufficiently exasperated thereby, that body, communicated, together with one of the gonow at the point of dissolution, resolved to ac-vernor's own, (to the committee of assembly, quit themselves with as much spirit as if they at that extraordinary crisis, appointed to act had been immortal.
on behalf of the whole, and other members To the appendix the reader must be again then called in to their assistance) by his sereferred for both pieces; they cannot, they cretary ; in which was the following express ought not to be suppressed ; they are too long clause : “ the expense of making the road to be here inserted entire, and to abridge thirty feet wide, and the principal pinches them, at least that of the assembly, would be twenty, will make an expense of about eight to maim one of the most lively pieces that li- hundred pounds.” This letter was dated berty ever inspired or controversy produced. April 16th; and the committee having, in the See Appendix A.
name of the house, undertaken to defray the Such a reference then to the subject matter expense of both roads, the work went on acof both as will just serve to keep us a sort of cordingly. In another letter from the same historical connexion, is all the use to be made commissioners, dated May 3d, it is said, “ both of them in this place.
roads will leave little of one thousand five The assembly had (very truly) charged the hundred pounds, for it is impossible to tell governor with contriving all possible methods what unexpected occurrences will arise," &c. of expense to exhaust their funds and distress the house, now sitting, resolved to persevere their affairs; and had given in proof the ex- notwithstanding, and notwithstanding the loss orbitant demand made upon them for cutting of their bill, which made their compliance the road for the use of the army; an enter more difficult. Another estimate, dated fifteen prise which they tell him they had undertaken days after this, signified, " that the expense at his instance, on a computation of its costing of opening both roads would be little under only eight hundred pounds. The governor in two thousand pounds." Thus three estimates
had been delivered in, each exceeding the necessary provisions for the troops, as this was other; and after all this, when one road had the only province able in the general's situabeen dropt, and the other reduced in the man- tion, to furnish him with them, we might now ner alleged by the governor, the said com- have been in peaceable possession of fort missioners did actually require five thousand Du Quesne." pounds to be sent to them, in addition to what To which astonishing, because groundless had been paid to them already, which in mo- charge, the assembly, in the following full and ney and provisions was supposed to be near effectual manner, replied: “ We own that we one thousand pounds. The committee of ac- have often mentioned this; but we have been counts had sat upon this requisition, had pro- forced to it by the governor's asserting, as ofnounced it to be extravagant, and had given it ten, in his messages, contrary to known fact, as their opinion, August 8th, 1755, “that in that we had done nothing, and would do noorder to prevent imposition on the public, the thing of that kind. But it seems we take to said commissioners ought forthwith to attend ourselves the services of particular men, in the said committee with their accounts fairly which the governor says, we had no hand; stated, with proper vouchers for the same. " and adds, “That had we in time opened the From all which premises, the house had proper roads, raised men, and provided carsurely reason to ask as they did, “ whether | riages, and necessary provisions for the troops, they had not good reason to be surprised at we might now have been in peaceable possesthis, and to suspect some extravagance in the sion of fort Du Quesne.' We beg leave to ask management ?" But they went farther still; the governor, has the body no share in what they cited the original letter from the govern- is done by its members ? has the house no or's six commissioners to him, and by him hand in what is done by its committees ? has communicated to the house, August 9th, in it no hand in what is done by virtue of its own which the five thousand pounds is specified, resolves and orders ? did we not, many weeks together with an intimation, that the people before the troops arrived, vote tive thousand being much in want of money, the money pounds for purchasing fresh victuals, and other could not be sent too soon. And they con- necessaries for their use ? did we not even clude this section with the following shrewd borrow money on our own credit to purchase remark: “ The governor's judgment of our those provisions when the governor had remotives to engage in this work of opening the jected our bill? will the governor deny this, roads, seems to us a very uncharitable one, when he himself once charged it upon us as a but we hope to find more equitable judgment crime? were not the provisions actually purelsewhere. We are obliged to him, however, chased by our committee, the full quantity refor owning that we did engage in it at all. quired by the commissary, and carried by land For as he is pleased to lay it down as a max- to Virginia at our expense, even before they im that we are very wicked people; he has were wanted ? did the army ever want proshown in other instances, when we have done visions, till they had abandoned or destroyed any good, that he thinks it no more injustice them? are there not even now some scores of to us to deny the facts, than now to deny the tons of it lying at fort Cumberland and Conegoodness of our motives. He would, however, gochieg ? did the governor ever mention the think himself ill used, if any part of his 'zeal opening of roads to us before the 18th of March, in that affair was ascribed to the menaces di- though the requisition was made to him by the rected to him; or to a view of accommodating quarter-master-general in January ? did we by the new road the lands of the proprietaries' not in a few days after send him up a bill to new purchase, and by that means increasing provide for the expense, which he refused ? the value of their estate at our expense.” did not the governor proceed nevertheless to
Again: the governor was pleased to express appoint commissioners, and engage labourers himself in these extraordinary terms You for opening the road, whom we afterwards have often mentioned what you have done to agreed to pay out of the money we happened promote the success of his majesty's arms un to have in our power ? did the work ever stop der general Braddock, and for the defence of a moment through any default of ours? was the province, and say, you have letters from the road ever intended for the march of the the late general, thanking you for your ser- troops to the Ohio? was it not inerely to open vice; the truth of this I must beg leave to a communication with this province, for the question, as the late general was too honest to more convenient supplying them with prosay one thing to you, and another to the visions when they should be arrived there? king's ministers. He might acknowledge the did they wait in the least for this road? had services of particular men, but how you can they not as many men as they wanted, and take those to yourselves as an assembly, when many from this province ? were they not you had no hand in what was done, I am at a more numerous than the enemy they went to loss to know. I think it will not be doubted, oppose, even after the general had left near but that had you in time opened the proper half his army fifty miles behind him ? were roads, raised men, and provided carriages and not all the carriages they demanded, being one