478 | To Henry Seymour Conway

    Boston June 29. 1766.


    I had the honor to receive your letter of Mar 31 on the 31st of May,1 3 days after the Assembly was met at the usual time. I have been Very desirous that, at the time that I acknowledged this receipt, I should also inform you that the Assembly had complied with his Majesty’s recommendation to indemnify the Sufferers. But I am sorry to say that after having waited a month for this purpose & during that time having used all means in my power to prevail on them to give this proof of their gratitude & Duty, I was obliged last Evning to dismiss them without their having done Any thing towards indemnifying the Sufferers, & without the least assurance that they intended ever to do it. I shall with the first Opportunity give your Honor an exact detail of this whole affair, setting it in one View & in a true light. At present I write only for a ship which is to sail tomorrow, and am obliged to be short in what I have to write to day.2

    I am extremely obliged to your Honor for your favorable signification of his Majesty’s approbation of my Services in terms so far exceeding my desert. The steady & constant Exercise of my best Abilities is due to his Majesty’s Service; & I hope I shall never be wanting in making that return for his Majesty’s gracious acceptance of my endeavours to do my duty in the station He has been pleased to place me. Besides my honorable distinction I have received from your favor, Many private testimonials of the use my letters have been made of, on the behalf of the Province have arrived here; sevral of which have been published in the News papers.3 And tho’ they have had great weight with the Merchants & principal Gentlemen of the Province, yet they have no visible effect upon the House of Representatives. And indeed when people are worked up to a general Opposition to Government, the Merit of the Governors is more apt to increase their fury than abate it.

    I have occasion to apologise for the liberty taken in printing your letter:4 The former Letter which I laid before the Assembly last Winter was printed by their order without my Consent; & indeed without my forbidding it, as I thought it could but be of good Service.5 The present letter6 I was persuaded would also be printed by order of the House: and as I thought it would be of great service to publish it together with my Speech, & I could not see a Single word in it, but what must be universally approved of, I consented to the printing it. I have since found that the House has not printed it in the Votes;7 which upon a little reflexion, I was not surprised at, as there cannot be a more severe censure of their conduct, than an application of your Honor’s kind & benevolent Letter.

    I shall, with all possible expedition, give a full & particular Account of the proceedings of this Session, in which there have been other transactions obnoxious to Government, as well as that of the requisition. I have made as good a defence as I could by a free Use of all the powers I have, which now are allmost reduced to negatives only: Nevertheless I could not help the passing of some things very injurious to Government. I have no better expectation now, than I have formerly expressed, of the Authority of this Government being restored to its former force: Sudden changes in the Humours of the people are not uncommon; but there is no Appearance of one at present.

    I am, with great respect & gratitude, Sr Your Honor’s most obedient & most humble Servant

    Fra Bernard

    The Right Honble H. S. Conway Esqr.

    ALS, RC      CO 5/755, ff 531-534.