Mixed News from England

    571. From Lord Hillsborough, 14 April 1770

    572. To Sir Francis Bernard, 19 April 1770

    573. To Lord Hillsborough, 19 April 1770

    574. To John Pownall, 19 April 1770

    The official exoneration of Francis Bernard from the charges made against him by the Massachusetts House of Representatives removed the last obstacle to Hutchinson’s appointment as governor-in-chief. Hillsborough wrote him confirming the news of the king’s decision on 14 April. Hutchinson’s previous letter seeking to be removed from consideration for the job would not arrive in London until mid-May when it would cause considerable embarrassment.

    The partial repeal of the Townshend duties received royal assent on 12 April, but rumors of the likely outcome of the debates in Parliament a month earlier began to circulate in Boston by late April, launching a new round of public discussion about whether to end nonimportation or hold out until the duty on tea should be repealed as well.

    571. From Lord Hillsborough

    Whitehall, April 14th 1770

    No. 35

    Sir, I have the Satisfaction to acquaint you in explanation of the Hint contained in my last Letter No. 34, that the King has been graciously pleased, upon a Consideration of the merit of your Services in the Post of Lieutenant Governor of His Province of Massachuset’s Bay, to direct a Commission to be prepared to pass the Great Seal, appointing you Governor in Chief of that Province in the room of Sir Francis Bernard.1 This Testimony of the King’s Approbation of your Services will, I am persuaded, be agreeable to His Majesty’s Subjects in the Province of Massachuset’s Bay, who have been so long Witnesses of your Zeal & Endeavours for its true Interest and Welfare; and His Majesty has the fullest Confidence that they will give you every Support that can tend to promote His Service, and render your Administration honourable and easy.

    His Majesty has also been pleased, as a Mark of His Approbation of the Conduct of Mr Oliver, to promote him to the office and rank of Lieutenant Governor, intending to transfer him, as a Means of enabling him to support the Dignity of his Office, the Allowance £200 per Ann. Sterling which was granted to you by a Warrant to the Commissioners of the Customs.2

    With regard to the Office of Secretary, His Majesty has thought fit to confer it upon Mr. Nathaniel Rogers,3 I am &c,


    Dft (National Archives UK, CO 5/759, ff. 55–56); at head of letter, “Lieut. Govr. Hutchinson.”; in the margin, “Draf. to Lieutenant Governor Hutchinson.” AC (National Archives UK, CO 5/765, ff. 91–92); at head of letter, “Lieut Governor Hutchinson. (No. 35.).”

    572. To Sir Francis Bernard

    Boston 19 April 1770

    No. 14

    My Dear Sir, I am now to thank you for your obliging Letters viz duplicates of No 15 No 16. 17. 18 & 19.1 I have but a few minutes which I can employ in writing to you by a Vesel bound from an out port. The arrival of a number of Vesells from England with goods and with news that the Duty upon Tea will not be taken off and with Letters I think from the Enemies of their Country in England encouraging the people here to send back the Goods has set the Town mad again and tomorrow we are to have another mob meeting.2 I am not only destitute of every sort of assistance from the authority of Government but I am unable to prevail on the persons interested to make any vigorous opposition to the most absurd as well as unjust measures that ever enterd into mens heads. So infatuated are the people that tho many of them are starving for want of business & tho they know goods are freely imported into Rhode Island and New Hampshire to supply Connecticut & the Eastern Country as well as the Southern Parts of the Government & the Town is losing a Trade which they will never recover & tho they see it has no Effect upon the Manufacturers in England yet they persist & for aught I see will do it until something effectual is done in England to punish this Offence. If besides a penal Act of Parliament something is not done which I dare not trust to a Letter the People will never come to their senses. Every thing which I can do by my self alone for I am absolutely alone I shall do. I have put my Negative upon Hancock whom they chose Speaker pro tempore Cushing being indisposed. I do not at present see how I can avoid doing the same upon Cushing whom they have chosen Comissary. Warren they chose Speaker upon my refusal of Hancock. Altho in many respects he is as exceptionable as Hancock yet as I make the share men have taken in the combination the great reason for my exception I did not refuse Warren.3 They would have tried me with 50 more as bad as he. I have signed no Bills they having declined making any grant to me or to the Judges &c. until yesterday when they granted to me 550£ for what time it is intended I do not yet know. I hear the 200£ Sterling allowance as Chief Justice was made an objection against any larger Sum.4

    I cannot help flattering my self that the late doings of the Town & Province have before this time caused such measures as shall restore both to their former Subordination & that a person of Importance is appointed to carry such measures into execution. If all the other Colonies were of the same spirit with the people of this town I will not say what I think would be the consequence of any longer neglect.

    I shall answer your Letters at large by the first Vesell from hence and write to Mr Jackson upon the Subject of his Letter by Freeman.5 I saw Lady Bernard yesterday in good health. Mr Logan was at my house & we are to consult about Mr Bernard who is better than he has been.6

    The January Packet as usual is behind all Merchant Vessels not being yet arrived. I have the honour to be Dear Sir Your most faithful humble Servant,

    AC (Massachusetts Archives, SC1/series 45X, 26:473–74). Contemporary printing: Boston Gazette, 1 January 1776 (penultimate paragraph only).

    573. To Lord Hillsborough

    Boston 19 April 1770

    No. 7

    My Lord, The House of Representatives having delayed making any Grant for the support of the Lieutenant Governor I let them know that I must postpone the part I am to take in any of their Acts until they have done it.1 They passed it over another week contrary to the Engagements of former Assemblies when the dispute about a fixed Salary was subsisting. I hear they have made a grant to day of 550£ only but whether it is intended as a Salary for the 9 months I have been in the Chair or whether it is intended likewise to look forward I am not yet informd. I have no reason to expect a Salary from them equal to my necessary Expenses. Their Speaker being confined by Sickness they chose John Hancock Esq. who has been one of the most forward in the combinations. I therefore disapproved of the choice. The Council and House have made choice of Thomas Cushing Esq. to be Comissary General, who has been Chairman of the Committee of Merchants. I have the choice under consideration. It is my intention to refuse giving my consent to it. I have avoided entring into any dispute with them upon any subject. I design to call the next Assembly at Cambridge. If your Lordship had not expressly mentioned Cambridge I should have preferrd Salem or Concord.

    The arrival of a number of Vessels from England with Goods and with intelligence that the Duties in the late Act of Parliament are not like to be wholly taken off has raised a fresh ferment in the minds of the People of Boston and there is to be a meeting of the Inhabitants tomorrow and the voice of the Town to day is that the Ships shall be sent back or the Goods housed and the Owners restrained from selling them.2 I have repeatedly mentioned to your Lordship that there can be no exertion of internal authority to suppress these Irregularities the majority of every order of Men in Government uniting with the body of the People, and our deliverance from them depends intirely upon the measures which shall be taken for that purpose in England of which I hope we shall have advice before the next Assembly which by the Charter must meet the 30th of next month. With great difficulty I have prevailed on the Superior Court to put off the Trial of Capt Preston and the Soldiers until the latter end of next month the people of the Town having pressed them to bring it on immediately. I have the honour to be with the greatest respect My Lord Your Lordships most humble and most obedient Servant,

    DupRC (National Archives UK, CO 5/759, ff. 152–53); at head of letter, “Duplicate”; at foot of letter, “The Right Honorable the Earl of Hillsborough”; docketed, “Boston 19th. April 1770. Lieut. Govr. Hutchinson. (No. 7) Rx 11th: June (Dup—Orig. not reced)” and “C: 16:.” RC (National Archives UK, CO 5/894, ff. 23–24); at foot of letter, “The Right Honb: the Earl of Hillsborough.” SC (National Archives UK, CO 5/768, ff. 111–14); in the margin, “Boston 19th April 1770 Lieut. Govr. Hutchinson (No. 7.) Rx 11th: June (Duplicate Origl. not recd.).” AC (Massachusetts Archives, SC1/series 45X, 26:462–63). SC (Houghton Library, Sparks 43, 1:120); addressed, “Thos. Hutchinson to the Earl of Hillsborough Boston April 19th 1770”; excerpt beginning, “The arrival of a number. . . .” SC (Houghton Library, Sparks 10, 3:74).

    574. To John Pownall

    Boston 19 April 1770

    Dear Sir, The masters of two Vessels from Out Ports coming to me to swear to their Certificates for Bounty on Timber I have detained them till I can write a few lines to acknowledge your most obliging favour of the 2d of February1 and to acquaint you that the Affairs of the General Court give me no sort of trouble altho the Members are sour enough compared with the rebellious Spirit which governs all the measures of the Town of B. The arrival of a number of Ships with goods & without any Prospect of a Repeal of the whole Duties has put them upon calling another illegal meeting being encouraged by many Letters they say from England to persevere in refusing any Commerce with the Nation & to send their Ships back again.2 I hope they will not be so mad but something extravagant I expect they will do nor will they return to a state of order until they are compelled to it and kept in awe by a power superior to them. By the first Vessel which sails from this Town I will write my sentiments at large and with more freedom than I incline to do by Persons unknown to me. I am with very great regard & respect Sir Your Obliged most Obedient Servant,

    AC (Massachusetts Archives, SC1/series 45X, 26:473); at head of letter, “Mr Jon Pownall.”