113 | To Jeffery Amherst

    Boston May 17. 1762


    I received yours of May 6 & 10477 on Saturday Evning & this morning I laid them before the Council.478 They had sat on fryday & Saturday in expectation of Lowders return. But he not coming in the forenoon of the last of those days, they took into consideration many petitions for leave to send Fish to the West Indian Islands, & unanimously advised me to exempt fish from the Embargo as it usually, if not always, had been. This Morning I desired them to take the subject of fish again into consideration, as you seemed desirous that the Embargo should extend to that commodity. When it appearing that at this time of the Year the detaining of fish would be so Very ruinous to Numbers of People, for whom they had no prospect of any satisfaction from the Crown or otherwise, that they continued their advise that fish should be exported to the Principal Islands only on bond given to return a certificate, & oath made that they will not carry any other provisions. The Council also advised to the permitting Mr Hancock to send 3 months Provisions for Annapolis & Fort Cumberland;479 & also for sending some livestock & fresh Victuals to Halifax for the use of the Garrison & Fleet there. In all things ^else^ the Embargo on provisions is kept up.

    The Council could not conceal their disappointment at not receiving any assurances from you that this Province would be at liberty to import provisions from the Southern Provinces particularly Pensylvania & Connecticut. The impending Danger of Want & distress which threatens this Country is far from being imaginary: Another summer such as the last will produce a famine here. It is therefore hoped that you will remove from them the Apprehension ^of want,^ whilst their Neighbours abound in superfluities. I have been able this day to get over this apprehension in favor of the Garrisons of Nova Scotia: But I am satisfied that the Discontent & Disorder which will arise from having the ports, from whence they have been used to draw their provisions, shut against them, in an uncommon time of scarcity, will be Very great unless I am ^soon^ enabled to remove their fears. I enclose a Copy of the resolution of Council upon this subject.

    As to the Correspondence of Mr Le Comte my time will not permit me to write on that subject now, but shall not fail to do it in my next dispatches.

    I am, with great regard, Sr Your most obedient humble Servant

    Fra Bernard.

    His Excellency Sr Jeffry Amherst

    ALS, RC WO 34/26, ff 132-133.

    Amherst replied that the “Reasons” for continuing a general embargo were “greatly strengthened from the certain Intelligence” he had received about the plans of some Pennsylvania merchants to run contraband to Havana, via the Bahama Islands. However, Amherst asked FB to supply him with the names of the masters and vessels to be employed in shipping supplies to Boston from Connecticut and Pennsylvania in order that they be given special dispensation to deliver their cargoes. Amherst to FB, New York, 23 May 1762, BP, 9: 285-286. FB continued to press Amherst to lift the embargo, assuring him that there was no “danger of provisions being sent to the Enemy” from Massachusetts. FB to Amherst, Boston, 10 Jun. 1762, WO 34/26, f 167.