310 | To Richard Jackson

    Boston Octo 22. 1764

    Dear Sr.

    I must proceed to answer your last letter1 by piece meal as I find opportunity: & now I will go upon the old Subject of the Townships East of Penobscot. And first I conceive you are mistaken in imagining that I furnisht the hint for a New Government about Penobscot. I never wrote, that I remember, to anyone upon that Subject but to you & J Pownall: and I remember very well what was in my mind at that time.2 I saw plainly, as I thought, that a Scheme for erecting a New Government was at the Bottom. I could not account for the opposition made to the province’s right to those lands from an intention to annex them to Nova Scotia: I knew it was not worth the while, & used many arguments to show that they had better remain with the Massachusets than be transferred to Nova Scotia. From thence I persuaded myself that other uses were designed for those lands than adding them to Nova Scotia: & being convinced that a scheme for a new Government was in petto,3 I endeavoured to show that such an intention should not obstruct these settlements, for that the lands would not be the worse for having 7 or 800 families on them.4 & then I proceeded to urge that such a purpose would be best pursued by means of an agreement with the Massachusets for an exchange or an equivalent, than by questioning their Title after it had been formally confirmed. So that my Letters, which mentioned a new Government, were all after & in consequence of my being convinced that there was a Scheme for erecting a new Government there before we made the Grants: and I dare say this will be easily discovered in my letters upon the Occasion. And I believe Sevral persons here can recollect that allmost from the Beginning I attributed the difficulties the Grants met with to an intention, as I supposed, to erect a new Government, & express[ing]5 my expectation that it would produce an open treaty with the Province for the Exchange of those lands, which I have allways thought might turn out to the benefit of the Province.

    And now the Plot begins to open, I am not under any great apprehensions that the Province will suffer by it. If he wants any of the lands belonging to the Province more or less, The King has proper Equivalent’s to give, & I trust he will give them. An Exchange of lands, if it is made upon fair & equal terms will in my opinion be for the advantage of all persons. For this purpose I will give you my Sentiments upon the Subject as fully as the hurry I am now in will allow. And as some of them will be such as you’l not choose to propose yourself, tho’ perhaps they may have your tacit approbation, I will do in a seperate letter,6 which you may show to my Lord H or any other Minister who will receive it as a private information not to be published. And I hope it will have some good Effect: for I am very desirous that these differences should be amicably adjusted; and that, if any part of the Territorys belonging to the Province are wanted for new arrangements, they may be obtained by a friendly agreement, & not by overruling the Province in a matter of right, which they consider to have been long ago determined in their favour.

    Since I wrote the last line I have received the 4 Warrants: & this obliges me to enter upon this Subject now, tho’ I had intended to have postponed it.7 How far it will be worth your while or mine to engage in the Nova Scotia Townships, will depend a good deal in the place where they are to be laid out; & if proper care has not been taken to secure St Croix, probably our greatest disappointment is yet to come. For I shant care to go much Eastward of that place. As for St John’s I know that the land there has been carefully culled.8 Besides one inducement for me to engage in it has been that this Settlement had may been within my own View. And therefore tho’ I make no doubt but the taking up 60000 ac: in Florida is very advantageous,9 yet it dont answer my purposes which are confined to this Country. I therefore should be glad to have my whole Share in Nova Scotia, I mean if I can get it laid out at St Croix; & therefore supposing the two sets of Grants to be equal in Value (tho’ I make no doubt but that in Florida will be, by much, the most advantageous) I should choose to take one fourth of the Nova Scotia Grants for my whole Share. And if Mr Franklin  should prefer Florida, as is very probable, He may take one fourth of the florida Settlements: and then the other 6 may take such an eighth in Both. Otherwise you may divide all the Floridan & ¾ ths of the Nova Scotian into 7 parts, as you please, For I must consider, that as I am to have the whole trouble of managing the Nova Scotian Townships on this side the Water, less than one fourth wont make it worth my while.

    I shall write by the first opportunity to Govr. Wilmot & propose to him a plan for your Townships in the Gross, & will send him a map for explanation,10 As soon as I receive his Answer, I will communicate it to you. If we can get the lands I propose, I shall have no doubt of proceeding: but I shall scarce think it worth the while to go a land hunting in Nova Scotia, if I cant get it where I am acquainted. I do not yet give up either of my Scheme’s upon the Passimaquoddy, & will not ’till I can’t help it. A Settlement between the River Passimaquoddy & St Croix, I should like better than this. But if both of them could be obtained, it would be better; as they would assist one another. I shall turn it in my thoughts, & so may you. I would have you talk with Mr Vassal upon his plan & associate with him, as I shall with his Agent here.11 If the Crown should take those lands by Agreement or otherwise, It may be necessary to move the Business immediately. Your Name need not appear, no more than mine. I should like two Townships for myself, & that is as much as I should choose to undertake. Land is like to be all that I shall get in America, unless my Government is better supported than it is at present. I live within my Income & that is all I pretend to.

    I have mentioned to Mr Pownall, that to show the practicability of a conditional grant of the Island, I would draw up the form of one. I did so: but thinking that it was treating the King’s offices with too much familiarity, I have not sent it:12 but with this you will receive an abstract of it, which will be sufficient to explain the purpose.

    If you think proper to introduce my letter to Lord Hillsborough, you may hint to him, if you think it right, that if he would favour me with a private letter on this or any other intresting Subject, I could be more explicit to him, than I could ^can^ be in letters to a public office .

    The Assembly has set these 12 days : but nothing has been done has yet. Great pains are taken to make them moderate & discreet; and there is a much greater appearance of good temper among them than could be expected. But still I apprehend that the Violent & imprudent will get the better, & their representations will do them much more hurt than good. I keep out of the way & don’t meddle, except in private advice.13

    I have been again & again assured that the Mony due to me for the College books has been long ago order’d to be payed to you; & am now promist that infallible orders shall be immediately dispatched.14 I will see to it or send you a bill myself. I am obliged to conclude as a ship is just now ready

    I am Sr &ca

    R Jackson Esq;

    The Copy of the other Letter15 is in a separate paper

    AL, LbC BP, 3: 257-260.