9. [Representation of the Present State of the Colonies], [9 July 1754]

    10. Report on the Albany Conference, [25 October 1754]

    11. A Plan of Union, [26 December 1754]

    The coming of the French and Indian War consolidated Thomas Hutchinson’s reputation as an indispensable figure in Massachusetts government and imperial affairs, a position that was reinforced by his service at the Albany Conference in 1754. An effort to promote stronger intercolonial cooperation in the shadow of impending war with France, the Albany Conference convened on 19 June. Although Hutchinson arrived two days late, he quickly emerged as one of the leading figures at the conference. On 24 June, the delegates appointed a committee (composed of Hutchinson, Benjamin Franklin of Pennsylvania, Theodore Atkinson of New Hampshire, William Pitkin of Connecticut, Stephen Hopkins of Rhode Island, Benjamin Tasker of Maryland, and William Smith of New York) to investigate the creation of a colonial union. Over the next two weeks, the committee produced both the [Representation of the Present State of the Colonies] and the Albany Plan of Union. The [Representation] is notable for its defense of Britain’s most extreme claims to territory in North America as well as its criticism of Native American trade and land sales that benefited the colonists but also led to the alienation of many of the Iroquois, one of the principal problems the conference hoped to rectify. None of Hutchinson’s letters regarding the Albany Conference were found. The Plan of Union printed here is a revised version drafted by a committee of the General Court, since the plan devised at Albany had failed to receive endorsement by the Massachusetts legislature earlier in the fall. This second plan, written in Hutchinson’s hand, included all the colonies and did not divide them into northern and southern districts as approved at Albany. It faded into oblivion after the Massachusetts House voted to submit it to the towns for their consideration but then refused to vote the necessary funds to print the document.

    9. [Representation of the Present State of the Colonies]1

    [9 July 1754]2

    That his Majesty’s Title to the Northern Continent of America appears to be founded on the Discovery thereof first made, and the Possession thereof first taken in 1497, under a Commission from Henry the 7th. of England to Sebastian Cabot.3

    That the French have possessed themselves of Several parts of this Continent, which by Treaties have been ceded & Confirmed to them.

    That the Right of the English to the whole Sea Coast from Georgia on the South to the River St. Lawrence on the North, excepting the Island of Cape Bretton & the Islands in the Bay of St. Lawrence, remains plain & indisputable. That all the Lands or Countries Westward, from the Atlantick ocean to the South Sea, between 48 & 34 degrees North Latitude, were expressly included in the Grant of King James the first to divers of his Subjects So long Since as the year 1606, & afterwards Confirmed in 1620 & under this Grant the Colony of Virginia claims an Extent as far West as to the South Sea; & the Ancient Colonies of the Massachusetts Bay & Connecticutt were by their respective Charters made to Extend to the Said South Sea;4 So that not only the Right to the Sea Coast, but to all the Inland Countries from Sea to Sea, has at all Times been Asserted by the Crown of England.

    That the Province of Nova Scotia or Acadie hath known & determinate Bounds by the Original Grant from King James the first; & that there is Abundant Evidence of the Sense which the French had of these Bounds while they were in possession of it; & that these Bounds being thus known the said Province, by the Treaty of Utrecht, according to its ancient Limits, was ceded to great Brittain,5 & remained in possession thereof untill the Treaty of Aix la Chapelle, by which it was Confirmed.6 But by Said Treaty it is Stipulated that the Bounds of the said Province Shall be Determined by Commissaries, &c.

    That by the Treaty of Utrecht the Country of the five Cantons of the Iroquoise is expressly Acknowledged to be under the Dominion of the Crown of Great Brittain.

    That the Lake Champlain, formerly called lake Iroquois, & the Country Southward of it as far as the Dutch or English Settlements, The Lakes Ontario, Erie, & all the Countrys Adjacent, have by all Ancient Authors, French & English, been Allowed to belong to the five Cantons or Nations; And the whole of these Countries, long before the said treaty of Utrecht, were by the said Nations put under the Protection of the Crown of Great Brittain.

    That by the Treaty of Utrecht there is reserved to the French a Liberty of frequenting the Countrys of the 5 Nations & other Indians in Friendship with great Brittain, for the Sake of Commerce; as there is also to the English a Liberty of frequenting the Countrys of those in Friendship with France, for the same purpose.

    That after the Treaty of Utrecht the French built Several Fortresses in the Country of the five Nations, & a very Strong one at a place called Crown Point, to the south of Lake Champlain.7

    That the French Court hath evidently, Since the Treaty of Aix la Chapelle, made this Northern Continent more than ever the Object of its Attention.

    That the French have most unjustly taken possession of part of the Province of Nova Scotia; & in the River St. John’s & other parts of said Province they have built strong fortresses;8 & from this River they will have during the Winter & Spring Season a much easier communication between France & Canada than they have heretofore had, & will be furnished with a harbour more Commodiously Situated for the Annoying the Brittish Colonys by Privateers & men of war than Louisburg itself.

    That they have taken possession of & begun a Settlement at the head of the River Kennebeck, within the bounds of the Province of Maine, the most Convenient Situation for Affording Support & Safe Retreat to the Eastern Indians in any of their Attempts upon the Governments of N England.9

    That it Appears, by Information of the Natives, the French have been making preparations for another Settlement at a place Called Cowas on Connect. River, near the head thereof, where it is but about ten miles distant from a Branch of Merimack River, and from whence there is a very near & easy Communication with the Abenakis Indians, who are Settled on the River St. Francis, about 40 miles from the River St. Lawrence; And it is Certain that the Inhabitants of N. Hampshire, in which province this Cowas is Supposed to Lye, have been Interrupted & Impeded by the French Indians from making any Settlement there.10

    That Since the Treaty of Aix la Chapelle the French have Increased the Number of their Forts in the Country of the great Lakes & on the Rivers which run into the Missisippi,11 & are Securing a Communication between the 2 Colonys of Louisiana & Canada, & at the same time putting themselves into a Capacity of Annoying the Southern Brittish Colonys, & preventing any further Settlements of his Majesty’s Dominions.

    That they have been gradually Increasing their Troops in America, transporting them in their Ships of War, which return to France with a bare Complement of men, leaving the rest in their Colonys; & by this means they are less observed by the power of Europe than they would be if Transports, as usual heretofore, were provided for this purpose.

    That they have taken Prisoners, divers of his Majesty’s Subjects, Trading in the Country of the Iroquois & other Inland parts, & plundered Such prisoners of Several thousand pounds sterling; & they are Continually Exciting the Indians to destroy or make prisoners the Inhabitants of the Frontiers of the Brittish Colonys, which prisoners are Carryed to Canada, & a price equal to what Slaves are Sold for in the Plantations is demanded for their Redemption & Release.

    That they are Continually drawing off the Indians from the Brittish Interest, & have lately perswaded one half of the Onondaga Tribe, with many from the other Nations along with them, to remove to a place Called Oswegatchie, on the River Cadaraqui, where they have built them a Church & Fort;12 and many of the Senecas, the most Numerous Nation, Appear to be wavering, & rather incline to the French; and it is a Melancholy Consideration, that not more than one hundred & fifty Men of all the Several Nations have Attended this Treaty; altho’ they had Notice that all the Governments would be here by their Commissioners, & that a large Present would be given.13

    That it is the evident design of the French to Surround the Brittish Colonys, to fortify themselves on the back there of, to take & keep possession of all the Important Rivers, to draw over the Indians to their Interest, & with the help of such Indians, Added to such forces as are already Arrived & may hereafter be sent from Europe, to be in a Capacity of making a general Attack on the Several Governments; And if at the same time a strong Naval force be sent from France, there is the utmost danger that the whole Continent will be Subjected to that Crown; And that the danger of Such a Naval force is not meerly Imaginary, may be argued from past Experience; for if it had not been for the most Extraordinary Interposition of Heaven, every Seaport town on the Continent, in the year 1746, might have been ravaged & destroyed by the Squadron under the Command of the Duke De’Anville, notwithstanding the then declining State of the French, & the very flourishing State of the Brittish Navy, & the further Advantage Accruing to the English from the possession of Cape Bretton.14

    That the French find by Experience they are able to make greater & more Sure advantages upon their Neighbours in peace than in War. What they Unjustly possessed themselves of after the peace of Utrecht, they now pretend to have a Right to hold, by virtue of the Treaty of Aix la Chapelle, untill the true boundary between the English & the French be settled by Commissarys; but their Conquests made during War they have been obliged to restore.

    That the French affairs relative to this Continent are under one direction, & constantly regarded by the Crown & ministry; who are not Insensible how great a Stride they would make towards an Universal Monarchy, if the Brittish Colonys were added to their Dominions, & Consequently the whole Trade of North America Engrossed by them.

    That the said Colonys being in a divided, disunited State, there has never been any Joint Exertion of their force or Counsels to Repel or defeat the Measures of the French, & particular Colonys are unable & unwilling to maintain the Cause of the Whole.

    That there has been a very great Neglect of the Affairs of the Iroquois, or as they are Commonly called, the Indians of the Six Nations; & their Friendship & Alliance has been Improved to private purposes, for the sake of the Trade with them, and the purchase or Acquisition of their Lands, more than to the publick Service.

    That they are Supplied with Rum by the Traders in vast & almost Incredible quantities. The Laws of the Colonys now in force being insufficient to restrain the Supply; & the Indians of every Nation are frequently drunk, and Abused in their Trade, & their Affections thereby Alienated from the English; they often wound & murder one another in their Liquor, and to avoid revenge, flee to the French; and perhaps more have been Lost by these means than by the French Artifices.15

    That purchases of Lands from the Indians by private persons, for Small Trifling Considerations, have been the Cause of great Uneasiness and discontents; & if the Indians are not In Fact Imposed on & Injured, yet they are apt to think they have been; & indeed they Appear not fit to be intrusted at Large with the Sale of their own Lands; and the Laws of Some of the Colonies, which makes such Sales void unless the allowance of the Government be first Obtained, Seem to be well founded.

    That the granting or Patenting vast Tracts of Land to private persons or Companys, without Conditions of Speedy Settlement, has tended to prevent the Strengthening the frontiers of the particular Colony where such Tracts Lye, and been prejudicial to the rest.

    That it Seems Absolutely Necessary that Speedy & Effectual measures be taken to Secure the Colonies from the Slavery they are threatened with. That any further Advances of the French should be prevented, & the Encroachments already made removed. That the Indians in Alliance or Friendship with the English be Constantly regarded under some wise direction or Superintendency. That Endeavor be used for the Recovery of those Indians who are lately gone over to the French, & for Securing those that remain. That Some discreet person or persons be Appointed to reside Constantly with each Nation of Indians; Such person to have no Concern in Trade and duly to Communicate all Advices to the Superintendents.

    That the Trade with the said Indians be well regulated, & made Subservient to the public Interest more than to private gain.

    That there be forts built for the Security of each Nation, and the better Carrying on the Trade with them. That warlike vessels be provided sufficient to maintain his Majesty’s Right to a free Navigation on the Several Lakes. That all future purchases of Lands from the Indians be void, unless made by the Government where Such Lands Lye, & from the Indians in a Body, in their publick Councils. That the Patentees or Possessors of Large unsettled Territories be enjoined to Cause them to be Settled in a reasonable time, on pain of forfeiture.

    That the Complaints of the Indians relative to any Grants or Possessions of their Lands Fraudulently obtained be Enquired into, & all Injuries redressed. That the bounds of those Colonies which Extend to the South Sea be Contracted & Limited by the Alleghenny or Apalachian Mountains; and that Measures be taken for Settling from Time to time Colonies of his Majesty’s Protestant Subjects Westward of said Mountains, in Convenient Cantons to be Assigned for that purpose; And finally that there be a Union of his Majesty’s Several Governments on the Continent, that so their Councils, Treasure, & Strength may be employed in due proportion against their common enemy.

    SC (Massachusetts Historical Society, Ms. N–1751); this handwritten document, not in TH’s hand, is part of the “Journal of the Proceedings of the Congress Held at Albany in 1754,” MHS Colls., Third Series, 5 (1836): 64–69. Every colony with delegates in attendance at the conference received a certified copy of the proceedings, but the only sets that seem to have survived are at the Massachusetts Historical Society, the Rhode Island State Archives, the New York State Library, the John Carter Brown Library in Rhode Island, and the Maryland State Archives, as well as the copy transmitted by Lieutenant Governor James DeLancey to the Board of Trade on 22 July 1754, which is at the National Archives UK. Contemporary printings: A True Representation of the Plan Formed at Albany, ed. Stephen Hopkins (Newport, RI, 1755).

    10. Report on the Albany Conference

    [25 October 1754]1

    To his Excellency William Shirley Esq Governour in chief, the honourable the Council and House of Representatives of his Majesty’s Province of Massachusetts bay.

    The Report of the Commissioners appointed, on the part of the Government of the said Province, to meet with Commissioners from his Majestys other Governments at the City of Albany, on the 14th June 1754—

    Pursuant to the Commission & Instructions ^which we had the honour to receive^, we proceeded to Albany, and there joined the Commissioners from the Governments of New hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Pensilvania, & Maryland: His Honour the Lieutenant Governor of New York was also present, as were four of the Council of that Province, but the said Council did not appear as Commissioners, or shew any special powers to act in behalf of that Government.2 Upon our first arrival we laid our Commission before the Lt. Governor, and the Commissioners from the several Governments, and afterwards we thought it convenient & accordingly ^offered to^ produced all the Instructions which we ever receiv’d relative to the business of this meeting, that so the ready & free disposition of this Province to come into any reasonable measures for his Majestys Service might more fully appear, & that no question might be made whether, notwithstanding the ample powers given us by our Commission, we were not limited or restrained by private Instructions from the execution of them.3

    The Commissions from the other Governments were also produced, but ^the powers from divers of them appeared to be very insufficient for the purposes which your Comissioners conceived to be mainly intended by this meeting.^4

    The several publick Conferences with the Indians held by the Lieutenant Governor of New York in the presence, & with the concurrence of the Commissioners from the several Governments; as also a Representation of the present state of his Majestys Colonies on the Continent with relation to the French & Indians, which was unanimously agreed to by the Commissioners; and a Plan of an Union of the Colonies, which was so far settled & agreed to by the Commissioners as that they ordered the same to be laid before their respective Constituents, and a copy thereof to be transmitted to each Government who did not send Commissioners; these are all contained in the Journal or Minutes of the proceedings of the Commissioners, an attested copy whereof is herewith presented.5 But there are divers matters not contained in this Journal, and yet relative to our Commissions, & of importance to his Majestys Service, & the Interest of his Colonies which we beg leave further to report.

    William Shirley, 1750. Hutchinson changed his political loyalties to Shirley after Shirley displaced Jonathan Belcher as governor. Shirley became the commander-in-chief of British forces in North America after the death of General Edward Braddock. By Thomas Hudson. Courtesy of National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution/Art Resource, NY.

    The Commissioners from the several Governments were fully sensible that the Indians of the six Nations were in the utmost danger of being wholly lost by ^to^ the English; that the defection was continually increasing, as also the french influence which was the cause of it, all which was evident by the smallness of the number of Indians that attended this Conference, although a very large Present was expected,6 and by the free acknowledgment of those that did attend that great numbers were removed from their ancient Castles to the french Frontiers, & that others were kept back by french artifices and management; and those Indians who profess still to be in friendship with the English appeared, to such of the Commissioners as had been present at former Treaties, to be much cooled in their affection & esteem; and their indifference was evident not only from the air & manner of delivering their publick speeches, but from the expressions contained in them, and also from the behaviour of some of the principal Indians in private conference or discourse.

    Besides the french influence which the Indians are under, there likewise appears to be a great uneasiness & dissatisfaction concerning the purchases of their Lands, made or alledged to have been made by the Inhabitants of New York; they complained of the want of a due regulation of the Trade; & of the great neglect & inattention of those to whom Indian Affairs have been committed.

    It appeared to the Commissioners by a Letter from the Right honourable the Lords of Trade, communicated by the Lt. Governor of New York, that this dissatisfaction was one great cause of their ^Lordship’s^ ordering a meeting of Commissioners from all the Governments,7 and that it was therefore incumbent on the said Comissioners publickly to have enquired into the grounds ^there^ of this dissatisfaction, in order effectually to have removed the same; but his Honour the Lt. Governour did not apprehend it to be the intention of the said Letter that Commissioners from other Governments should make enquiry concerning purchases made by the Inhabitants of New York, & confirmed by the Governor of that Province in his Majesty’s name, and therefore all the Conferences relative to this Complaint were held between the Lt. Governor & Council, and some of the principal Indians of the nations which were dissatisfied; and all the share which the Comissioners had was, after these conferences were over, to send, on a proposal from the Lt. Governor, to send one Gentleman of each Colony, in order to hear those Indians declare; that they were so far satisfied as to be willing to suspend any farther enquiry into this Complaint for one year longer.

    It appeared ^probable^ to your Commissioners that these purchases have been transacted, on the part of the Indians, by artful designing men ^of their own nations^ who have taken what consideration has been paid principally to them selves, and the body of the Nation remained either unacquainted or dissatisfied therewith; and that some of these purchases have, by surveys, been extended beyond the intention of the contracting Indians themselves. And your Commissioners cannot omit observing that the purchases & grants of such vast Tracts or Countries of Land, as are comprehended in some of the Patents complained of, upon the frontiers of the British Colonies, can have no tendency to strengthen his Majesties Dominions, provided there be no obligations to speedy settlement, it not being very material whether the Title to this Country remains in the Natives, or be transferred to particular persons Inhabitants of any Province, so long as the Lands remain unimproved; and we are humbly of opinion that any quit rents, arising from such grants, can bear no proportion to the expence & charge, which are the necessary consequences of discontent, & uneasiness among the Indians, much less to the final loss of them from the British Interest.

    With respect to the Trade carried on between the English & Indians on the frontiers of New York, your Commissioners found, upon enquiry, that, on the payment of twelve pence per gallon duty to that Government by the English Trader, the Indians may be supplyed with unlimited quantities of Rum at Oswego & other licensed places on the said frontiers; that by this means they are almost continually drunk and, at least, imagine that in their drink they have been abused & imposed upon in their trading. Your Commissioners think it necessary further to observe that a constant Trade is carried on in the City of Albany between the Inhabitants & the French Mohawks or Cagnawauga Indians,8 and that a great part of the goods sold ^employed in the general Trade^ by the English go first to the French, and from them to the Indians; from ^these two [facts]^ it appears that the English are able to supply the Indians at cheaper rates & to allow them higher prices for their Furrs than the French are able to do; and inasmuch as the securing, and more firmly attaching the Indians, is of vastly greater importance than all the advantages of a private Trade, we are humbly of opinion that if the whole Indian trade was under the direction of some disinterested Party ^Government^, or Company, and all private Trade restrained, and only a sufficient profit raised from such ^publick^ Trade to support the charge of carrying it on, in such case the French might be undersold, greater quantities of the English Manufactures consumed than are at present, and the Indians made sensible that it is their Interest to forsake the French & become attached to the English.

    It further appears to your Comissioners that the great sums which are from time to time expended in presents, and the charges of Treaties with the Indians of the six nations might be employed in a different manner to much greater advantage; for great part of these presents are always left in the City of Albany, being purchased from the Indians by the Inhabitants, & Traders, and Rum, amongst other things, supplied in lieu thereof, and the remainder is soon expended or lost, & as soon forgot, and then for many months if not years the Indians think themselves wholly neglected & disregarded; whereas a much less sum distributed by faithful discreet persons, constantly to reside among them, for the relief of any poor sick or otherwise necessitous families, agreeable to the practice of the French, would be more likely to engage the affections of the English Indians, & secure them to the English, & ^the residence of such persons amongst the Indians^ would be attended with this further advantage, that seasonable intelligence might be ^always^ obtained of any attempts of the French to draw over the Indians & proper means used to defeat them.

    We have nothing to add on the subject of the Representation of the state of his Majestys Colonies &c. but with respect to the Plan of an Union of the several British Governments your Commissioners were in some doubt, whether it might not be convenient that the Colonies should be divided into at least two Districts, as the great distance of the two extream parts of his Majestys Governments from each other, must render it always very burthensome to some or other of the Members to give their attendance, be the place of meeting where it will, and in a Government of so large an extent there will be danger of some parts being neglected or unequally considered; but as the designs of the French may probably require the united strength & councils of the whole British Continent, and as it seemed to be of the last importance that all Affairs which relate to the Indians should be under but one direction, and considered without any special regard to any particular Governments, we were induced to prefer the present Plan.9

    We think our selves further bound to observe that an happy harmony subsisted among the Commissioners ^but the insufficiency of the powers from several of the Governments rendered it impracticable for them to come into any conclusive union & agreement which your Commissioners in pursuance of their Instructions would most earnestly have endeavoured on the part and in the behalf of this Province.^10

    All which is humbly submitted. Samuel Welles,11 Tho Hutchinson, Ol Partridge, John Worthington

    AC (Massachusetts Archives, SC1/series 45X, 4:459–64); in TH’s hand, though signed by Wells and others; undated.

    11. A Plan of Union1

    [26 December 1754]

    A Plan of Union of his Majestys Colonies on the Continent for their mutual defence & security

    It is humbly proposed that by Act of Parliament the House of Representatives of each Colony be enjoined within a limited time after the passing of such Act to chuse Members to represent them in a Grand Council in the following proportion viz.

    Massachusets bay


    New hampshire




    Rhode Island


    New York


    New Jersey








    North Carolina


    South Carolina



    In the whole


    That the President for said Grand Council be appointed ^by^ & ^receive his Salary from^ the Crown and that as soon as conveniently may be after such appointment he call a meeting of the Council to be held first in the City of Philadelphia.

    That the Assent of the President be made necessary to all Acts of the Council, saving the choice of a Speaker.

    That the Council without their ^own^ consent shall neither be dissolved nor prorogued nor continued sitting longer than six weeks at any one time.

    That the Council shall meet once in every year and at such other times as they shall adjourn to, as occasion shall require: the place for the next meeting always to be determined before such adjournment, and upon an emergency the President having obtained in writing the consent of seven of the Members may call a special meeting of the Council at any time or place provided due & timely notice be given.

    That the Members of the Council be paid Ten shillings sterling for every days journeying & attendance twenty miles to be accounted a days travel.

    That upon the expiration of three years there shall be a new Election of Members for the Council and always upon the death or resignation of any member his place shall be supplied by a new choice at the next sitting of the House of Representatives of the Colony to which the ^deceased Member or resigning Member belonged.^

    That no Member of the Council shall be chosen or appointed to any Office civil or military by the President or Council.

    That twenty five Members shall be a Quorum provided there be among them one or more Members from a major part of the Colonies.

    That in case of the death or other incapacity of the President the Speaker of the Council for the time being shall be vested with the powers & authorities of a President to continue until there be an appointment by the Crown.

    That the President with the advice of the Council may hold & manage all Indian Treaties in which the general interest or welfare of the Colonies may be concerned and shall have the sole power of making peace with or declaring war against the Indian nations, of restraining & regulating all Indian Trade by Laws & Orders with penalties annexed not extending to Life or Limb, all Offences against such Laws or Orders to be tried & determined within the Government where the Offence shall be committed according to the course of judicial proceedings in such Government in like manner as if such Offence had been committed against the Laws of such Colony, and any Offence that may be committed in any parts ^that shall not be within the certain bounds of any Colony shall & may be tried and determined in the Colony where the Offender shall be taken.^2

    That the President and Council shall have power to raise and pay Soldiers and build Forts for the Defence of any of the Colonies & for removing all encroachments upon his Majestys Territories and for the annoyance of his Majestys Enemies but not to impress in any Colony without the consent of its Legislature.

    And in order to raise monys sufficient for these purposes

    That the said President and Council be impowered to lay some general Duty on Wines & Spirituous Liquors or other ^luxurious consumption^ as shall appear to them just & equal on the several Colonies, each Colony to pay ^in proportion to their members^ and if it shall appear that the sum raised by any Colony falls short of such proportion and the deficiency shall not forth with be paid by such Colony then & as oft as it shall so happen the said President & Council shall have power to lay an additional duty on such Colony until the deficiency be made good; and if the Sum raised from any Colony shall exceed it’s proportion the surplus shall remain or be paid into the General Treasury of such Colony. And the Accounts of the Disposition of all monys raised shall be annually settled that the Members of the Council may make report of the same to the respective Assemblies.

    That the President & Council shall appoint Officers for collecting all such Duties as shall be agreed on and all laws & orders for enforcing the payment thereof in ^any &^ every Colony ^and also all laws & orders for restraining supplies to & communication with any of his Majestys Enemies whether by Flaggs of Truce or in any other manner^3 shall be as ^fully &^ effectually observed & executed as if they had been the Laws of that particular Colony ^where any Offence shall be committed^ and all Offences against such laws & orders shall be tried & determined accordingly.

    That the ^President & Council^ may appoint a General Treasurer ^to reside^ in such Colony as they shall judge most convenient and also a particular Treasurer for each Colony and from time to time may order the Sums in each treasury into the General Treasury or draw on any particular Treasurer as they shall think proper, but no mony shall issue out of any Treasury without the special order of the President by the advice of the Council except when sums have been appropriated to particular purposes and the President shall be specially impowered to draw for such sums.

    That the supreme command of all the military force employed by the President & Council be in the President and that all ^subordinate^ military Officers be appointed & commissioned by the President with the advice of the Council and all civil Officers as Treasurers Collectors Clerks &ca. shall be chosen by the Council & approved by the President and in case of vacancy in any civil or military office the Governor of the Colony where the vacancy shall happen may appoint some person to supply the same until the pleasure of the President & Council shall be known.

    That notwithstanding the powers granted to the President & Council for the general defence of the Colonies yet any Colony shall be at liberty upon an emergency to come into any measures for their particular defence ^or for the defence of any neighbouring Colony when attacked^ the reasonable charge whereof ^to^ be allowed by the President & Council ^and^ paid out of the general Stock but no Colony shall be at liberty to declare War against any Enemy or to begin any Hostilities except they have the direction or allowance of the President & Council.

    That the continuance of the powers granted to the President & Council be limited to the term of six years from their first meeting unless at the expiration of said six years there should be war between Great Britain & France in which case the said power shall continue until the end of such war and then expire and in case any Stock shall ^then^ remain in the general Treasury the same shall be restored to the several Governments in proportion to their respective contributions. Which is humbly submitted per Sam Wells per order

    AC (Massachusetts Archives, SC1/series 45X, 6:171–75); in TH’s hand, though signed by Wells; undated; docketed, “In Council Decr. 26. 1754 Read & sent down.” In Albany Congress, Newbold cites another copy of this document at the Massachusetts Historical Society in the Samuel P. Savage Papers (Letters and Papers 4 [1721–1760]), but it was not found despite a thorough search.

    12. To Robert Hale

    Boston 20th. Decr 1755

    Dear Sir, I have kept up a constant correspondence with Mr. Bollan ever since he went first to England.1 In the beginning of it I wrote like a Merchant Yours I received by such a ship of such a date & then went on to answer his letter paragraph by paragraph but I soon discovered my unpoliteness, for in fifty letters I have received from him he has never taken any notice of any from me & scarce ever said any thing relative to them.2 When I found my mistake I followed the mode, for Custom is so respectable a thing, with me, that whenever ^even^3 any new word or expression comes into fashion I am very early in following it. Let me direct you with a paper I have met with among the files & at the same time convince you that what is very tolerable in one age is very ridiculous in another. When you have copied it Return it that it may go back to its depository. Yours affectionately,

    Tho Hutchinson

    Hai in senatu escaravi. Plura otiosus.4

    RC (Massachusetts Historical Society, Saltonstall Family Papers); at foot of letter, “Colo. Hale.” Enclosure not found.