903 | From Thomas Hutchinson

    Boston, 23 Augst 1772

    My Dear Sir

    It gave me great pleasure to receive your Letters by Mr. Harrison after so long an intermission.1 Mr. Pownall had prepared me for them having wrote me by the packet that he thought not only looked but really were better in health than he ever knew you to be.2

    What you mention about the Judges of the Superior Court has been intimated in my Letters from Ld Hillsborough.3 The quantum of the Salaries has not been ascertained. What you expect for the puisne Judges is too small. I fear it will discourage them. You know in our levelling Constitution the Salaries of all the Judges has been the same and sometimes a small addition of about £30 sterlg has been made to the Chief. But for the puisnes not to have more than half the Chief is below the proportion in England especially in the Common Pleas and Exchequer. It can’t be less than as 250£ to £400. I made a proposal of having the Salaries in addition to the Grants made by the General Court. This was in a letter which I think went by my Son and if approved of may make the proposal for an additional £50– more easily complied with.4 It looks as if the affair would be settled before Lord Hillsborough went to Ireland and no alteration will be made in his absence. It will increase the clamour here but it can’t be helped. You see what weak though sawcy insolent Resolves the House passed upon the Subject of the Governors Salary and they have sent an Address to the King conceived in much the same terms which they expect Dr Franklyn should present.5 Whether any notice will be taken of either is uncertain. It’s difficult to say for what reason one Assembly after another should be allowed in the most open manner to deny the Authority of Parliament over the Colonies without ever a check from Parliament for such insolence.6

    In 1733 some very sawcy Resolves passed in the House of Representatives which were laid before the House of Commons by one of the Members and after some very strong Resolves a Committee was appointed with power to send for persons papers &c. It was known the Session would end before this Authority to a Committee would have any effect.7 Our political Heroes at this day know that their security lies in being procul a Jove.8 [A]9 declaratory Act of Parliament signifies nothing. What objection [c]an there be to a penalty upon the denial of the authority of parliament and when done by any assemblies or Bodies politick in any part of the Kings British Dominions why should not all subsequent proceedings of such assemblies or Bodies politick be declared to be meer Nullities. Or if this be inexpedient can no other way be found to punish this Offence. If we are suffered to go on in this way in a little more time no regard will be paid to any Act of Parliament Whatsoever.

    I have mentioned to Flucker your intention to write to him and upon what Subject.10 I have talked with Williams and Worthington about the exchange for the Country West of Connecticut River. They like it, though all the Lands are patented out, but they dont think it practicable to bring the House to agree to any proposal of that Nature. If any thing is to be done I can see no need of Treaty. The Country is derelict by the Province and it is reason enough to found an Act upon and likewise to comprehend the Province of Main as necessary to the subsistence of the other which can hardly stand alone and it would be still better if My Ld Hillsboroughs plan some years ago could now be carried into execution and New Hampshire annexed to this Province.11

    I expect to write you on other Subjects by this Opportunity.

    I am, Dear Sir, Your Faithful humble Servant

    L, LbC      Mass. Archs., 27: 373–374.