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the House would unite in the fear of God, &c. And as the minute taken of this strange incident (which followed the Philadelphia remonstrance in much such a manner as the legion-letter followed the Kentish petition before referred to) will serve at once to show the ferment which then prevailed in the province, and yet how far the people in general were from desiring to be preserved against the incursions of the enemies, at the expense of their constitutional liberties; it is here inserted, to wit;

"The Speaker told them, that it was well known this House was composed of members chosen without any solicitation on their parts, to be the representatives of the people, and guardians of their liberties; that the whole powers the House were invested with, were derived from the people themselves; and that, as the House had hitherto, so they should still continue to discharge the high trust reposed in them, to the best of their understanding and abilities; and then asked them, whether they desired that the House should give up any rights, which, in the opinion of the House, the people were justly entitled to. Some of the petitioners, in behalf of the whole, answered, No; they were far from requiring any thing of that kind; all they wanted was, that some expedient might be fallen upon, if possible, to accommodate matters in such a manner, as that the province might be relieved from its present unhappy situation. To this the Speaker replied, that nothing could be more agreeable to this House than a harmony between the two branches of the legislature; and that, as the governor had yesterday evening sent down a message, intimating that the proprietaries are now disposed to contribute a sum of money towards the common security of the province, there was a great probability that all controversies on that head were at

an end, and that some method would be speedily taken for relieving the province from its present difficulties."

In effect, the governor having given his consent to the militia bill, and the House having made some immediate provision, for landing and relieving the miserable French exiles obtruded upon them from Nova Scotia, they proceeded to resolve, first, unanimously,

"That the right of granting supplies to the crown in this province, is alone in the representatives of the freemen met in assembly, being essential to an English constitution. And the limitation of all such grants, as to the matter, manner, measure, and time, is in them only." And then,


That, in consideration of the governor's message of yesterday, by which it appears, that the proprietaries have sent him an order on the receiver-general for five thousand pounds, to be paid into the hands of such persons as shall be appointed by act of assembly, and applied, with such sums as the assembly should grant, to such uses as may be necessary for the common security of the province; and as it would not be reasonable or just, at this time, to tax the proprietary estate, in order to raise money therefrom, over and above the said grant from the proprietaries, the House will immediately proceed to form a new bill for granting a sum of money to the use of the crown, and therein omit the taxation of the said estate."

Accordingly such a bill was ordered the same day, and, in full confutation of all the injurious surmises that they did not so much as intend to save their country, prosecuted with so much zeal and alacrity, that it received the governor's assent the next but one following.



The Indian-Trade Bill. Complaint of the Shawanese Indians. Resolution concerning the Indian-Trade Bill, and irregular and improper Petitions. The Message of the Assembly in Regard to the Enlisting of purchased Servants. General Shirley's Letter of Acknowledgment for a voluntary Present of Clothing sent to his Troops. Bill for Extending the Excise. Assembly adhere to their Bills and assign their Reasons. The Governor goes to Newcastle, and the Assembly adjourn.

THUS the two branches of the legislature were at last united in the great duty of making all contribute to the defence and preservation of all.

But, though the storm was for the present over, some marks of recent turbulence still remained. The governor, though frequently called upon, could not be brought to pass the bill for regulating the Indian trade. The House, therefore, thought proper to press him with such a message, as should, by explaining the nature of the bill, not only indicate the nature of the abuses it was calculated to correct, but also oblige him, if possible, to account for his delay; and the message agreed upon was as follows, namely;

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May it please the Governor,

"As the bill for regulating the Indian trade, by employing sober and discreet persons to reside among those nations that remain friends to this province, for the purpose of furnishing them with the necessary goods in exchange for their peltry, at easy and reasonable rates, on account of the public, and thereby securing them to our interest, seems to us a bill of great importance at this juncture, we are very desirous of bringing it to a conclusion as soon as possible; and

therefore once more earnestly request the governor would be pleased to let us know his sentiments upon it, and communicate the amendments he is pleased to say he thinks needful, that we may consider them. The bill has already lain before him above two weeks; and we fear, if something of the kind is not immediately gone into, we shall lose our few remaining Indians on Susquehanna; for, as none of our traders now go among them, and they dare not come down to our settlements to buy what they want, for fear of being mistaken for enemies, there seems to be the greatest danger of their being necessarily driven into the arms of the French, to be provided with the means of subsistence."

To which the governor was pleased to return the following evasive answer;


"Since your bill for regulating the Indian trade has been before me, my time has been so much taken up with the variety of business that the circumstances of this province made necessary to be despatched without delay, that I have not been able to give it the consideration a bill of that nature requires, nor to examine the laws of the neighbouring provinces upon that subject. But, as the Indian trade is now at a stand, I cannot conceive that it will be at all dangerous to the public to defer the completing of this act till the next sitting; especially as it will be necessary to call in and confine our friendly Indians to certain limits, to prevent their being mistaken for and killed as enemies, where they must be subsisted. This will hinder them from hunting, so that they will have no skins to trade with."

And now, after having so often treated the assembly as a body fitter to be prescribed to, than consulted with, he took it into his head to apply to them for advice; on what account it is reasonable his own message should explain.


"General Shirley, pursuant to his Majesty's orders for that purpose, has requested me to meet him at New York, in a congress he has there appointed, as you will observe by the extract of a letter from him upon that subject, which the secretary will lay before you. At that meeting, business of the greatest consequence to his Majesty's service and the safety of these colonies will be considered and concluded, and the success of the next year's operations may, in a great measure, depend on the timely resolutions of that council.

"I have lately received such intelligence as to the state of Indian affairs, as will make it necessary for the colonies to join in some general treaty with those people, as well to the southward as the northward, which can no way so well be resolved on as at the congress now already met.


And, on the other hand, the late incursions of the enemy, and the necessity there is of putting this province into a posture of defence, as well as carrying into execution the several matters now in agitation, call for my presence, and the authority of the government. Under these difficulties I find myself at a loss which service to prefer, and desire you will give me your sentiments on this momentous and pressing occasion."

Now this congress was, in fact, to be a council of war; and the instructions the general had received, according to his own account, was to summon such of




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