468 | To John Pownall

    Boston, May 16, 1766.

    Dear Sr.

    I have this day recd your Letter of Mar 291 by Capt Miller, & am desirous to acknowledge it by a Ship which is to sail for Liverpool to morrow, tho’ I shall be obliged to be very short at present. Your very kind & un ^most^ friendly Watchfulness over my intrests, deserve much greater Returns than it is in my power to make at this time: assure yourself they are deeply impressed in my breast.

    I had a short Account of the Lords protest from Mr Jackson,2 tho’ not conceived in such strong & apprehensive Terms as you write. I quite agree with You that it is expedient, that I should have orders or leave to go to England, as soon as may be; for many reasons as well as that assigned by you. I hope this Business will be much facilitated by a packet I dispatched on the first of April, containing Letters to Secy Conway, inclosed in one to you,3 & to Lord Barrington inclosed to Mr Jackson;4 wherein I propose that either I or the Lt Govr should be ordered home. I hope you will all see the Necessity of my being preferred, & get it ordered accordingly. The Certainty of the Lt Govrs being here to take the Chair, will remove the principal difficulty.

    I do not care to express my Sentiments upon the printing & publishing my Letters wrote in the Heat of Action & in perfect Confidence that they would never go beyond the Offices of his Majesty’s Councils. However, Iacta Est Alea.5 I must stand it as well as I can. And I hope, if the Ministry make this place too hot for me, they will provide me a better: for which Assurances, if I understand Right, I have parliamentary Security. I don’t expect at this present any Danger to my person or Goods: tho’ it is not easy to say what new Fury may be raised up reading my Letters, which tho’ conceived in the spirit of Truth, are too earnest & too severe, as well as faulty in diction, to be published & Read by the very delinquents of whom they treat. At present, by a timely communication of some of my Letters upon trade, I have got a little popularity among the mercantile part of the Town:6 but this will be more than ballanced by my later Letters upon the insurrections, &c.

    We expect a very turbulent House in the new General Court. All the usual friends of Government have been proscribed as friends to the Stamp Act: this has lost many of them their Elections.7 The Faction gives out that they shall change best part of the Council:8 I say (in common talk to be reported again) that if they garble the Council at one End, I will do it at the other: at least I will take care that they shall not fill up the vacancies they make with their own People. This Government is so totally unhinged, that I have no other part left but to excercise my constitutional powers with firmness, & show myself a Royal Governor indeed. If I should receive orders or leave to go home, the measure will be timely: be as it will, I have no other to take.

    I am obliged to conclude with assuring you that I am

    with great Truth & Regard &c. &c.

    Jno Pownall Esqr.

    P.S It does not appear certain to me that [my?]9 Letters are printed; all accounts say published only10

    AL, LbC      BP, 5: 111-114.