474 | To John Pownall

    Boston, June 16, 1766.

    Dear Sr.

    I take an Oppo of acquantg you with some further proceedgs of the genl Court, altho, matters are far from coming to a crisis upon the principle Business remaining unfinished. When I negatived the Councellors, I did not mean to clear it entirely of Friends to the Faction: this was too much to do at the first Time. I reckoned that I left three or four of that Party in the Council; & among them one [by]1 whom I have been much condemned, & whom I now heartily condemn myself for not including in the Negative. I wont now mention Names, but will only say that this Gentleman2 distinguished himself last Novr, by accompanying Capt Mackintosh at the Head of his Mob, carrying about the Pageants, which I mentioned in my Letter of Novr 7th3 were carried round the Town House, whilst the Govr, Council, & House of Representatives where actually sitting in genl Court. In the Winter Session he behaved decently & showed some Regard to Governmt that He made me forget his former misdemeanours. But on the Day of Election of Councellors, he acted with so much Indecency towards the Lt Govr, that had I been acquainted with it before I signed the Approbation, I should certainly have negatived him.

    This Man soon after the Opening the genl Court, put himself at the Head of a Committee of Council to make an Ansr to my Speech.4 This Ansr was cooked up by him in Conjunction with some of the Heads of the Faction of the House; It was introduced into the Committee in an insolent overbearing way; it was disapproved of by the Council in general: & yet there was not Spirit enough left among them to reject the Whole, as upon many Accounts they ought to have done. They only undertook to lop it & soften it: accordingly They cut off full half of it; they softened many harsh Expressions, & added some Civil ones: nevertheless there are visible Remains of the Old Leaven.5 However in it’s present Shape, I had a fair pretence to give it a civil Ansr, which I took hold of to close the Subject.6

    I have thought proper to give you the History of this Address, that if anything improper to come from the Council to me, should be observed in it, it may be accounted for. I expect that this Man will Avail himself of the Loss the Governmnt has suffered by the Exclusion of the Lt Govr, &c, & give me great trouble in the Council for the Year ensuing: but it will be some Comfort to consider that his Seat there is secured to him only for a year.

    The Business of the Genl Court, goes on as bad as can well be: the House has passed A Vote to postpone the Consideration of indemnifying the Sufferers till to next Session:7 This, in their Language is giving it the Go-by. It is expected that they’ll resume this Business this Session: but I dont expect it. They have also dismissed the Garrison at Fort Halifax, & greatly reduced the Garrisons of Castle William, & Fort Pownall.8 I have declared in Council, that I shall dissent to the Reductions, if the Vote comes up to me. The Council unanimously disapprove of it, & have ordered to lye upon their Table in hopes that the House will send down for it & reconcider it, which is expected. The only inconsistent Thing the House has done as yet is passing the Grant of my Salary unanimously: evry thing else is of a piece with the purposes of the Faction.9

    I have many things of Consequence to communicate to You; but must wait till the Court rises, which will be at least a week hence. When I am dismissed from my Attendance here, I shall retire to my Farm & work hard at Paper, till all my Business is done.

    I am &c

    J Pownall Esqr

    AL, LbC      BP, 5: 127-130.