499 | To John Pownall

    Boston, Septr 6, 1766

    Dear Sir,

    I have as yet recd no certain Advice of the Resolutions which have been taken in Consequence of my Letter to the Secry of State of Febry 28th, concerning my returning to England for a short Time.1 I have recd no[thing?]2 upon the Subject, but one from Ld Barrington3 which only serves to encrease my Uncertainty. I have just now wrote to Ld Barrington a long letter4 explaining the Perplexity & dist[ract?] ion I am under, as not knowing what to p[lan?] what to expect, or what to hope.5 I have desired him to communicate the Letter to you, & to talk with you upon the Subject: & for that Reason I shall say the less of it now. I shall put the letter into your box, that you may if you please deliver it yourself: but that is not necessary if it is not convenient.

    I send their Lordships more papers6 relating to the military Execution on the Refractory Land-holders of New York, which having extended itself into our Province, has like to have had very fatal Effects. It is supposed here to have had its origination from the private Intrests & Passions of some Exorbitant Landlords, who taking advantage of the illegal & irregular proceedings of those, who claimed lands against them, in maintaining such Claims, have engaged the Governmt to minister to their Resentments. But however this proceeding may be justifiable in Strictness of Law, It cannot but be lamented that it was thought expedient, at a time, when the Introduction of the King’s Troops is thought necessary to the Support of his Governmts. The Faction will not fail to make use of this incident to incense the People against the King’s Troops: they have allready began with it here.

    I beg leave to communicate to you, a Copy of the Petition to the Govr of New York for two Townships, Bernard & Stockbridge, granted by Govr Wilmot Wentworth7 on the west side of Connecticut, & also a Letter of mine to Sr Hy Moore, explaining the Intrest which I have in these Townships. I have 18 lots in Bernard, & 22 Lots in Stockbridge; the whole cost me, I believe, not above £50 Stg. But as I expended this Money with a View to the Kings In Service, I think I ought to have my of the Lands or my mony again. I had rather have the latter than the former: for I have no great Opinion of these undertakings; which seem to me to be a dear way of purchasing Lands.8 I send you these papers for information in regard to others, more than myself. I would not have you give yourself more trouble upon my Account, in so trifling an inst[ance.]

    I have had many Occasions of late [to] observe upon the seditious Principles [which] the Faction is continually propogating among the People, in which an intention [to] work them up to a Rupture with Great Britain, for which their writings, flagitious as they are, fall short of their Saying is very apparent. But I have deferred writing upon this Subject, in some Expectation that I may be able to report upon it in Person. And if I was to make this the Subject of a public letter, I should not know Whom to address it to: as since the Duke of Richmond’s acceptance of the Southern Department,9 we are assured that the Affairs of America will be put into a Separate Office. However, I will now give you a Specimen by sending you one of the papers appropriated to the Faction, wherein you will see a manifesto against the Act of Parliament for securing the dependence of the Colonies; an Account of the Celebration of the Anniversary of the insurrection against the Stamp Act; & some Reflections upon the Military Execution in the Province of New York. These, & many more of this Kind, make our prospect here very unpleasing.

    I am, &c. &c.

    J. Pownall Esqr.

    AL, LbC      BP, 5: 152-155.