112 | From Jeffery Amherst

    New York, 6th. May 1762.__


    I Had last Night the favor of Your Letter of the 29th. Ultimo;474 Acquainting me of Your having Laid an Embargo on Provisions, but mentioning Some Difficultys that were likely to arise from that measure, and Desiring my opinion thereon.__

    I must first Return You my Sincere thanks for the orders You had given for Expediting the Embarkation of the Troops Intended for Halifax, as well as hastening the march of the Remainder to the westward.__

    The Readiness with which You have Complied with my Request for prohibiting the Exportation of Provisions, likewise Demands my Acknowledgements, as at the time when I wrote You last on that Subject,475 I had great Reason to Suspect that Schemes were forming by Sundry merchants on this Continent, to Supply the Enemy with all sorts of Provisions, by means of False Clearances & other Frauds, Countenanced, I am afraid, by the Officers of some of the Ports; but, within these few Days, I have made full Discoveries of the whole Plan, the Lieut. Governor having granted his Warrant to Seize the Persons & Effects of the French King’s Subjects at present Residing in this place; among whom is a monsr. Comte, who is now in Custody, who appears to have been sent on purpose to Establish such a Commerce with the Enemy, that not only their Settlements in the west Indies; but their Fleets & Troops, were to be Supplied with Provisions from this Continent: As his Papers mention some People at Boston concerned with him, I think proper to send You the originals (having kept Copies thereof) that You may take such steps as You Judge best for bringing the Guilty to Condign Punishment; and I likewise transmit You a List of Some Names and memorandums, which were found among his Papers as some of those mentioned therein may also belong to Your Government. Monsr. Comte was furnished with Circular Letters to almost all the Governors on the Continent as well as to the Governors of Some of the west India Islands both English & Dutch, Couched in such terms as plainly Discover his Design, altho’ he is Recommended to the King’s Governors, as a Person coming to their respective Governments, on account of his Health (of which no mention is made to the Dutch); and to settle some Affair of his own: I do not find a Letter for You, but perhaps he may have Delivered it.__

    From what I have told You, and a perusal of the Enclosed Papers, I am persuaded You will Joyn with me in thinking it highly Necessary to put a Total stop to this Iniquitous Trade, which is not only Infamous in itself, by Supporting the Avowed Enemies of the King; but occasions great Difficulty in procuring the necessary Supplies for Carrying on His Majesty’s Service: I have felt the good Effects already at this Port, by the merchants making offer of the Provisions, which I am well Convinced were Intended to have been sent to the Enemy; but finding from the orders given that they could not Effect it, they are now willing to Dispose of them to the Crown. This however would do but little towards preventing the Enemy’s being Supplied, if an Effectual Stop is not put to the Exportation of Provisions from all the other Ports; and I must therefore Request, notwithstanding the Inconveniences mentioned by You that will arise, by prohibiting Fish to be Carried to the West India Islands & other Provisions to Halifax, Newfoundland, & Quebec, You will Continue a General Embargo for the present, for without that I Do not see any possibility of hindering those whose Sole views seem to be to get money, without the least Regard for the good of their Country, from Accomplishing their Designs.__

    I Have wrote fully on this head to the Governor of Connecticutt,476 having received Certain Intelligence that sundry vessels have sailed from the Port of New London, Loaded with Provisions, Since the orders given to Stop all Such; and that some of those vessels have even ventured out without any Clearances at all.__

    I am, with great Regard, Sir, Your most Obedient Humble Servant.

    Jeff: Amherst.

    His Excellency Governor Bernard.

    P:S: To Save You the trouble of having the Papers translated, I have Caused a Translation to be made, which I herewith Enclose You.__

    Notwithstanding what I have said in the foregoing Letter, I would not prevent the New Settlers in Nova Scotia from Receiving the Necessary Supplies; and therefore Such vessells as take in provisions for that Province, and that give Bond, to Your satisfaction, that they Deliver their Cargo there, may be permitted to go thither.__


    LS, RC BP, 9: 277-280.