167 | To Richard Jackson

    Castle Wm. Octr 29. 1762

    Dear Sr.

    I have recd upon my son’s Arrival 3 letters from you, one dated Augst. 11th another without a date & the third dated Aug. 16 in that without date you mention the Grant of Mount desart with the difficulties attending the Motion for the Confirmation of it.636 If it is already determined that the Right of our province shall not extend beyond Penobscot, it wont become me to argue about it, on my own account. But the province I am persuaded will contest for their right to the last drop of Ink & the last word of Council. All I have to do is to keep my self out of the dispute as well as I can: for if I should be half so warm for my Island as this people are like to be for the lands which they apprehend to be granted to them by their Charter I fear I should not fail giving Offence. To avoid which it is my earnest desire to give my Affair such a turn as may bring it out of this dispute; I mean by solliciting a simple Grant from the King that may not conclude the Question, but may be left to operate either as a Confirmation of the grant of the Province, or as an original Grant, according as the Question shall be determined. Besides the withdrawing myself from this disquisition, which as it will be considered by the people here as a partial impeachment of the Charter, will probably grow very warm, I have reason to desire to avoid the delay which this dispute will occasion, which will ill suit with my time of life & much less with the oppertunities I have of improving this Island, which will be wholly lost if not speedily used. Before I enter upon the new proposal for confirming to me this Island, it may be proper to state my pretentions to this favor

    I need not mention to you the extraordinary expences that have particularly attended My frequent Commissions: you could not Avoid taking notice of it your self. It may be said that the Commission for Massachusets Bay at first was my own seeking; & the second is common to all Governors that were in Commission at the demise of the late King. But is not my case singular in having 3 of these Commissions to sue out in 3 Years (at the Expence of near £400 a piece, I may say fully so to me) for 2 Governments the least not exceeding £900 p an. the greater fully reckoned at £1200 contingencies Allowed for? I thought it so extraordinary a case that I submitted it (in a private manner) to the Lords of the treasury; & received for answer that such an Allowance would make a bad precedent &c: and that I had a right to apply to the province, who ought & would undoubtedly make an Allowance for my extraordinary expences upon the entry of My Govermt. I then talked with some chiefs of the people who advised me rather to take my Compensation in lands than Money as the latter came harder than the former. Besides the fees of an extraordinary Commision I had expended near 200 Pound sterling in Additions & Alterations at the Province House & the Govrs. apartmts. at the Castle over & above what the province Allowed, which amounted to so considerable a sum that I could not ask for all that I wanted. So that the Pecuniary consideration of this Grant amounted to near £600 Sterling As for the consideration of extraordinary services It has arose both from the state of the Country being engaged in a War at home & abroad & from my way of doing the public business wholly by my own hands using my Secretaries in nothing but Copying. But the ordinary business of this Government requires an extraordinary compensation. There is no one so ill paid in All America the whole certain income of it being scarce £1100 pr. an; to which may be added £100 more for contingent profits such as seizures &c The people are very sensible of it & therefore the Assembly, tho’ it will not increase the salary beyond the instruction, frequently takes an oppertunity of making the Govr. a compensation for particular services to make amends for the deficiency of his general income It was not upon account of the meer profits of the Government that I changed my situation: it was to put myself in a more public way to lay hold of an oppertunity to make a provision for my Children. Such Oppertunities can happen but seldom; and if I am defeated of this, I know not when & how to expect another. The little savings to be made out of my income (such as it has been & is) have hitherto been exhausted by extraordinary expences & never can amount to much; without some such favor as this, My service is like to be paid with little more than subsistance

    I have said thus much to state to you my pretentions to favor in this business: the means to prosecute it independently from the Claim of the province of Massachusetts Bay & yet so as not to preclude that Claim are thus founded. Whether this Island belongs to the Province or not, the King has now a right to grant it to me. if it belongs to the province It will amount to a Confirmation of the Assembly’s Grant: if it does not belong to the Province it will operate as an original Grant. I would therefore now solicit the Kings Grant without reciting the Assembly’s Grant or naming the Province it lies in, in which I would desire no other words to be used than Grant & Confirm to be under the signet Privy seal or great seal as shall be thought most advisable. They may then settle the provinces Right at leisure: and I can wait the Event with out the inconvenience which the particular Circumstances of this Affair, will occasion now. There will be one thing wanting to give this new turn to the Affair; which is a new memorial to the Secretary of State. This I will prepare to go by the next Vessell: for this I can’t get it ready. I will draw it in such a manner that it may bear any alteration that may be thought advisable to make after you receive it. Nevertheless if this Business could be put in this Channel under my former letter, without delivering in a new memorial, I should be well pleased. In this you must consult Mr. Pownall: the only way of doing this that I can see is to obtain a report from the Board of Trade, recommending me to favor expressing their doubts of this Island being within the province & therefore proposeing such a Grant as I mention. The Practicability of this I must submit to Mr. Pownall, whom I’ve desired to suspend the report, if as things now stand, it cannot be made in my favor.

    In one of your letters you seem desirous very Anxious about the recovery of St. Johns: you have therefore been agreeably surprised with the retaking of it. It has been a most Singular expedition much to the honor of those engaged in it: This province has had a considerable share of the Credit both by sea & Land. Upon the surrender of that place I foresaw that it would not be retaken by winter unless it was by expedition from this Continent, of which there was no prospect then, all our forces having been sent to the Havanna without whose assistance that place could not have been taken. Nevertheless in hopes of Men of War droping in I kept our Man of War King George which you know is a very fine frigate & was then in Complete order, to join Lord Colville at a proper time. As soon as he had got 4 ships, I added the King George to his fleet & he sailed immediately to face the Enemy The Naval forces stood thus



















    King George






    The french suffered themselves to be blocked up untill the land forces under Col. Amherst in several transports joined the fleet The Land Forces stood thus





    Granadiers of France


    Provincials of




    of Mass: Bay



    The Col. landed, drove them from place to place, bombarded them into a surrender, took 785 prisoners beside killed &c The Ships escaped in a dark night. Two days after the surrender arrived 4 Men of War from England. This is a short estimate of this extraordinary Event.

    I am Dr. Sr. Your most faithfull &c

    R Jackson Esqr.

    L, LbC BP, 2: 214-219.