Abbildungen der Seite
[merged small][graphic]

ry descent, but as they are the voluntary choice of a free people, unbribed, and even unsolicited. But they are sensible that true respect is not necessarily connected with rank, and that it is only from a course of action

suitable to that rank they can hope to obtain it.

[blocks in formation]

Iv ney, as we Cnnceivt', is more than that

sum, which males the common revenue
of the province above six thousand
pomuz's a year; the annual ex/aenceqf
govern'mentfiir a series ofyears (in'
eluding Indian charger) amounts to lit-
tle more than half that sum,- the in-
terest is paid by people who, no doubt,
find greater advantage in the use oft/re
money than the interest tbeypay/br it,
otherwise they would not be so .roli-
ritons to be admitted to borrow as they
always have been. That interest mo-
ney there/‘ore cannot, with any propriety
be called a tax laid on theprovince, or
a burden on the inhabitants. The ex‘-
cise itself is not a general tax. to
‘which all the inhabitants mmt cantri-l
bute, as it is paid by such only who
buy ‘wine and spirituous liquors, under
certain quantities; so that many pea’
[ale/my nothing of that tax. Of all
this revenue, about four bundled/wands
a year bar, on an average, jbr twenty
years past, (and great part of that
time during 'war) been expanded zn pre-
rents- Io the Indians, and charges on
their account,- which we cannot con-
celve to be a large sum, in proportion
to the revenue of the province, for so
great and important a service as that
rfl'eepz'ng the united nations qflnzlians
in the interest of Great Britain ,- we
believe every disinterested person will

8 Your committee are quite surprizetl at the concern the proprieta— ries are pleased to express in their eighth paragraph, on their bcingg'as they say, laid under a necessity of acquainting the public with the state of the revenue of the province; as if the state of that revenue had ever

been a secret; when it is well known,v

and the proprietaries themselves know, that the public accounts are yearly settled, stated, printed, and published by the assembly, and have been so for these thirty years past. Whatever private reaeions the proprietaries may have to make a secret of their revenue, we know of none to make one of the revenue of the province, nor has it ever been attempted Their following observations, concerning the nature of our taxes, and the distinction between general and particular taxes, seem to your committee not so just and accurate as might be expected; for we cannot conceive,that the willingness ofpeople to subject themselves to the payment of interest or excise, by taking money on loan, or consuming spirituous liquors, makes either the one or the other less a tax. The manner oflaying a tax, the easy method of levying it, and the benefits arising from the disposition of it, may all tend to induce people to pay it willingly; yet it is still a tax. And indeed all taxes ought, upon the whole, to produce greater good to a people, than the money kept in their pockets could do; in such case, taxes are no burdens; but otherwise


think the rum, wry small, and, from the manner of its being raised, not at all burdensome to the people,- besides which, had not half that money been expended on these accounts, it is most certain all the same excise would have

they are. Taxes, seemingly particular, are also more general than they are often supposed to be: the laboring man must live: excise the materials of his subsistence, and be generally finds means to get more

been paid. for his labour.

After estimating our whole present revenue, as if it had been the same for twenty years past, and would certainly continue, though the proprietaries know it depends on temporary acts near expiring, the renewal of which is at best dubious, they conclude that four hundred pounds a year for Indian expences is a small sum, and that we are under no necessity of being frugal, on this account, of the public money. This four hundred a year is the sum that they find has been paid on an average for twenty years past, and they take no notice of its being a growing charge, and that for the four last years before the representation, it amounted to near twelve hundred a year, which we conceive disinterested persons will think a very large sum; and although the same excise might have been raised, if not half that money had been expended, it does not seem to us to follow, that the proprietaries ought not to have paid their just proportion of it. If the sum be small, their proportion of it must have been smaller; and the money so saved might have been applied to some other use, beneficial to the public; or have remained ready in the treasury for any emergency.

9. The whole sum paid, in twenty 9. On the ninth paragraph you!‘ years,jbr Indian services, is not mm: committee will only observe, that than, on a common computation, our the people of Pennsylvania do likefamily has paid, in the sam: time, for wise pay duties and excise for the duties and excises here, jbr the iup- support of his majesty’s government; port of his majesty’s government ,- and other taxes, which, considering and which we choose to mention, in their ability,>are perhaps proportionqnswer to-zhat part of your represen- ably equal to those paid by the protation, ‘wherein you, unadoisedly, pub- prietary family, or any othersubjetii lish to the world, that our estate in in England. We pay indeedas much Americani: cxcmptrdfiom the bur- as an infant colony can well bear, (lens borne by our fellow-subjects in and we hope and believe the justice Great Britain; such matter ‘might of a British parliament will never much more properly have been awoid- burden us with more. The propriecd ,mul at the same time that wesbew taries exemption was not published you, that we do pay all other taxes till now at their own instance. 1t here, that on land only excepted, ‘we was made use of as a private motive must advise you to be per)’ cargful, to themselves only, in the represen' not toput people here in mind of that tation. single exemption. Several proposals [have been madefbr laying taxes on North America, and it is most easytofurc

see that the trey-same act ofpnrliament that shall lay them on our, will also lay them on your estates, and on those Qf your constituents.

10. We cannot allow that you have always paid your interpreter to his satzifaction, because we know we have charged ourselves with gratg'fications to him, when the assembly has refused to pay him what he thought his sera'ices deserved,- and we maie no doubt he can remember such instances; however, with respect to any expenses of that sort, and many others here, we entered into them without any expectation of being repaid, and should think itfar beneath us to send the accounts of them to the house of representatives, as your age)“, employed by yourselves, might do for the expenees incurred by him. What we might reasonably expert, is, a thanhful acceptance of our endeavours to serve the public,- and you do not thinh proper to male even that return, we shall, nevertheless, be jitlly satisfied with the consciousnesss ofhao

ing rendered the province all the service: in our pan-er.

11. We do not conceive that any act of assembly does, or can establish, what you call a monopoly in us for the purchase of lands ,- we derive no right or property from any such law. It is under the hing’s royal charter that we have the sale right to make such purchases,- and it is under that some charter, that every settler has a right, through us, to,the estate he posserves in the province. 7' he act itsel , which you seem to allude to, achnofwledges this right to be so granted to us

10. On enquiry, we have reason to believe that the interpreter’s bills of charge against the province, have always been allowed and paid; and where his accounts have contained blank articles for his services, he has been asked what would sa-— tisfy him, and the same has been allowed. We. suppose the instances alluded to, wherein the assembly did not fully satisfy him, must have been such as the proprietaries were concernedin by the purchase of lands, and a part might accordingly be left for them to pay. W'e believe our assemblies always have been, and we hope always will be, ready to acknowleg'e gratefully any services rendered to the public by the proprietaries ; and not merely to acknowlegc them, but to make adequate returns.


11. Whether the monopoly oi‘ lands, in favor of the proprietary, was established by the royal grant, or by-acts of assembly, or by both, your committee do not think it material at this time to dispute, since the reasoning in the representation remains the same, viz. that those in whose favor such monopoly was erected, ought at least to bear a part of the expence necessary to secure them the full benefit of it.

by the charter, and is only declaratory thereof to the people, advertising-them of a certain truth, that they are liable according to the lows g‘ Great Britain, to

penalties for eontra'vening such right.

12. Tour assertion that treaties for land are made at a less expence to us,

12. In the twelfth paragraph, three things appear somewhat cxtraordb


on account of [Jrooincial presents be

ing given at the same time, does not appear to us to be founded on fact ; the last purchase was made on no other account, but purely to save the province the expense of making another present to some Indians 'who came down after the time that the principal vdeputation had received the presents intended jbr the whole, and 'were on their return back; and the land was bought very dear on that account. Other treaties for land have been made when provincial presents have not been given ,- and 'we do not, or ever did, desire, that the inhabitants should bear any part of the expense of Indians who came down solely at our request to consent to the sale of lands, unless they stay on other public business also; and whenever they have come down on bothvaccounts, we are sensible the expence has been di‘aided in a manner very favorable to

the public.

er when there are such presents? prietaries deny 2V

, 13. 'We are far from desiring to avoid contributing to any public expence, which it is reasonable cue-should bear a part 0/‘, although Our estate is not, by lain, liable to be taxed. A: ‘we already have been, so we doubt not ,rwe always slmll be, at a far greater ex]:ence in attending zhe afairs of the province, than our es rate could betaxed at, all the estates in tbe province ‘were rated to tbe [tub/i0 charges, which 'woulJ be the only fair :way of estab

' [Fl-hing. a proportion. If ‘we ‘were quil

ling to consent to any such matter, the value of our estate, and of the estates

' (j all lb" inhabitants, ought‘to be con

sitlereil, (ml the whole expence proportianably laid upon the whole value,- in

nary to your committee. 1. That the proprietaries should deny that treaties for land are made at less expence on account of' provincial presents accompanying them , which we think any disinterested judge would at least allow to be probable2. That they should say the last purchase was made on no other account, but purely to save the province the expcnce of a. present; as if they had no occasion to purchase more land of the Indians, or found no advantage in it. 3. That tuprovc such purchases were not the cheaper on account of provincial presents accompanying them, they should give an instance in which, they themselves say, the purchase was the dearer for want of such presents. If purchases are dearer to the proprietaries when no provincial presents accompany them, does not this clearly confirm the assertion of the assembly, that they are the cheapand does it not prove what the pro

13. It appears by their thirteenth paragraph that the proprietaries think the part they voluntarily submit to bear, and expect always to bear, of public expences, is greater than their proportion, equitably laid, would amount to. If this be so, and they are, as they say, “far from desiring to avoid contributing to any public expence, which it isreasonablfl they should bear a part of, although their estate is not‘by law liable to he taxenh” your committee are at a loss to conceive, why they should refuse, “ to enlerint'o any agreement for the payment of any particular proportion of Indian or other public expences,” when such agreement might save

which case you would find, that the expence which 'we voluntarily submit to, out of afllection to the inhabitants, is much more than such our proportion so laid would amount to; besides these generul expenses, the first of us sent cannon a: his own charge, to the amount if above jbur hundrellpuunds sterling, jbr the defiance of our city of Philadelphia, neglected by a late house ofrepresentatiwes ,- which, alone, ‘is such a sum as the proportion qfa tax on our estate would not in many years amount to.

them money, and is proposed to prevent dissatisf'actions, and to preserve union andharmony between them and the people; unless it be to shew their utter contempt of such union and harmony, and how much they are above valuing the people’s regard.

The charge on former assemblies, that they neglected the defence of the proprietaries city, your commit~ tee cannot but think unkind, when it is known to the world, that they gave many thousand pounds during the

war to the king’s use, besides paying near three thousand pounds at one time, to make good the damages done to the masters of servants, _by the irregular and oppressive proceedings of the proprietaries lieutenant; and that their not providing cannon to defend the city, was not from neg‘lect, but other considerations set forth at large in the printed proceedings of those times, needless now to be repeated. At the same time it may be remembered, that though the defence of the proprietaries city, as they are pleased to term it, by batteries of cannon, was more their interest (we will not say duty) than any other person’s whatsoever, and they now represent it as a thing so necessary, yet they themselves really neglected, and even discouraged it; while some private gentlemen gave sums nearly equal to that they mention, and many contributed vastly more, considering their circumstances, by which means those batteries were not only completed in season, but the defence of both town and country in that way provided for; whereas this boasted assistance of four hundred pounds worth of cannon, was sent, like Venetian succours, after the wars were over. Yet we doubt not, but the proprietary who sent them has long since had the thanks of those who received them, though we cannot learn that they ever

And as this is the case, we are not dieposed to enter into any agreement with the house of representatives for payment of any particular proportion qflndian, or other public expent'es, but shall leave it to them (to whom it of right belongs) to provide for such expences, as they shall judge necessary for the public service. I l

' were favored with'any from him, for what they did and expended in de

fence of his share of the province property.

[merged small][merged small][graphic]
« ZurückWeiter »