849 | To Thomas Hutchinson

    No. 33.

    Hampstead, July. 7. 1770

    Dear Sir,

    I have received your Letter of May 22.1 I have now by me two Letters for you, which have waited for a Conveyance, the late Advices having stopt a Ship laden for Boston: so that I shall dispatch what Letters I have by the Packet this Evening.2

    Since I have wrote my former, a Committee of the Council has been sitting at the Cockpit from day to day, upon a Reference of Enquiry into the Disorders of Boston. They have examined a good many Gentlemen acquainted with Boston & have formed Conclusions, which are digested into a Report to the King, which I understand was confirmed in Council yesterday.3 As you will receive a Copy of the Order of Council with Orders thereupon in the same Packet with this, I need not enter into particulars. What is done at present is preparatory to bringing the Business into Parliament; and for that Purpose the Governor, Lieut Governor, Council & House of Representatives will be called upon to make Answer to the Charge against them contained in the Report of the Committee of Council.4 I beleive you and I shall have little else to do but to admit the Charge to be true & justify ourselves under the Inability we have been subject to from the Constitution of the Government & its Consequence the Defection of the Council.5

    Nothing will be done at present with the Forces but taking the Castle into the Kings hands & strengthening it both with fortifications & troops; & bringing the royal Navy to Boston as head Quarters.6 It is not proposed to put Troops into the Town untill there is a Magistracy which may be depended upon; which will be the first Business to provide for. The Threats of the Faction to prevent the Kings Troops coming into the Town are despised; since the Fleet alone will be sufficient to secure the Subjection of Boston. The Faction is continually defeating its own Purposes & no sooner had they got rid of the Troops, but by an high handed Riot unchecked by any Magistrate, they showed the Necessity of having Troops in the Town & a Magistracy which will preserve the Peace & protect the Subject.

    In what Manner the civil Power is to be strengthened does not appear & probably is not yet determined. The cheif Question will probably be, whether to vacate the whole Charter or only to explain & amend it especially in regard to the appointment of the Council, which all agree must be altered. I am for the latter, as it seems to me that the Appointment of a royal Council alone will rectify all the Disorders of the Government that arise from the Constitution.7 some other Regulations not arising from the Charter may be wanting, as the Return of Juries &c. You would do well to give this a full Consideration & let me know your Thoughts.

    You will receive a Letter from Mr Pownall concerning continuing Col Goldthwait in the Command of Fort Pownall. It does not contain an Order to restore him,8 because they would not suppose that you had superseded him. But Mr Pownall authorised me to recommend to you that if you had been prevailed upon to supersede him You should immediately restore him; of which you may advise me or him.9

    Govr P has made it his Business for some days past to vindicate himself from a Report that prevails every where that his Letters were the Occasion of the goods being returned from Boston. He told me had that he had been with Lord N upon the Subject & my Lord asked me about it in a Conversation I had with him a few Nights ago. But I beleive his Assertions of his not having wrote to that Purpose don’t gain much upon the Report which is strongly credited in the City, & positively asserted by some of the Merchants there.10

    I leave it to other Letters to inform you of the Orders which are gone to the Commissrs. both in regard to their own sitting & preventing illicit Trade.11 In regard to the latter, I beleive the Smugglers will make no great Advantage of the late Proceedings of their Friends the Mob.

    I am &c.

    The Honble Govr Hutchinson

    I put the loose Paper in one of your Letters into proper hands: it is one of many Notices the Effects of which are daily expected.12

    L, LbC      BP, 8: 104–107.