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The provinces adjacent were branches from the same root, and responsible for their conduct to the same laws; and the Indians, from the very beginning, had been considered and treated as equally the sons of one common father.
Land wanted by us was a drug to them. The province, then to be allotted, peopled, and cultivated, had not been wrested from them by violence, but purchased for a suitable consideration. In the contract between the proprietary and his sub-adventurers, all possible care had been taken, that no cause of complaint should be administered to them; in trade they were not to be overreached or imposed upon; in their persons they were not to be insulted or abused, and, in case of any complaint on either side, the subject matter was to be heard by the magistrates in concert with the Indian chief, and decided by a mixed jury of Indians and planters.
The same regard to conscience, which led them into this wilderness, adhered to them afterwards; and, having thus resolved and provided never to be aggressors, and not being sovereigns, they left the rest to Providence.
Governed by principle in all things, and believing the use of arms to be unlawful, the case of defence by arms could not come within their plan.
But then, as their community was left open to Christians of all persuasions, and the conditions of union could be abhorrent to none, they might well presume on being joined by numbers, which has since happened accordingly, who, being devoid of such scruples, might be easily induced, for proper considerations, to take that difficulty out of their hands; and, as to military service under all English tenures whatsoever, no man could be compelled to serve in person, who made it his choice to serve by proxy.
Add to all this, that William Penn himself does not appear to have been under the dominion of these scruples, he having taken care in his charter from the crown (sect. 16.) to be invested with all the powers ever bestowed on a captain-general, (which were also to descend to his heirs and assigns,) "to levy, muster, and train all sorts of men, of what condition soever, or wheresoever born, and to make war and to pursue such enemies as should make incursions into the province, as well by sea as land, even without the limits of the said province, and, by God's assistance, to vanquish and take them," &c.
And, lastly, if ever involved in the quarrels of the mother country, and obliged to take their share of the common duty and the common danger, they might reasonably hope for all the protection from thence they might stand in need of, on the condition of contributing all that was in their power, consistent with their principles, towards it.
This they have occasionally done from Colonel Fletcher's time downwards; and they would have done more, if the proprietary calls and those of their deputies had not put it out of their power.
Allowing, therefore, that this unresisting principle would have been a solecism in the construction of an independent state, it was not, provincially speaking, destitute of proper palliatives.
At least, scruple of conscience is, at all times and in all cases, less blamable than the wanton experiments tried upon the province even by the proprietary's own agents; first to scatter terrors among the peaceable inhabitants, and then to plead the necessity of a military force from the effects of their own wicked devices.
Of this nature was the false alarm raised in the
Queen's time by Evans and Logan; a fact which stands charged against them, in the records of the assembly, at this very day; and which, as often as recollected, will ever suggest a fear, that a measure, so unwarrantably contended for, would, if obtained, be as unwarrantably made use of.
We have now such a-summary of the state of Pennsylvania, from its origin, before us, as may render every branch of the controversy still depending familiar to us; and, as facts are best seen and understood in order of time as they occurred, we shall do our best to follow the thread as it lies.
The Assembly grants Money in aid of the Expedition against Carthagena. The Governor enlists indented Servants upon that Occasion; and the Assembly apply the Money they had given to indemnify the Masters. They give Money towards the Public Service. The Proprietaries of Pennsylvania oppose the Bill brought into Parliament for restraining the Northern Colonies from issuing Paper Bills of Credit. The Assembly call upon the Proprietaries to contribute to the Expense of Indian Affairs, which they decline. A Bill for increasing the Provincial Paper Currency. Rejected by the Governor; and petitioned for by the Inhabitants. The Answer of the Proprietaries to the Representation of the Assembly concerning the Expense of Indian Affairs. The Assembly's Message sent to the Governor, together with the Currency Bill he had before rejected. Another Message to him concerning Indian Affairs. Governor's Message, importing his Assent to the Currency Bill, with a suspending Clause. Resolution of the Assembly not to accept this Clause, with their Reasons. Their Reply to the Proprietary's Answer to the Representation on Indian Expenses.
In April, 1740, when the paper currency of the province had been just increased, as above specified, to eighty thousand pounds, and established for sixteen years, the merchants trading to the eastern colonies of America took occasion to complain to the House of Commons, of the inconveniences and discouragements brought on the commerce of Great Britain in those parts, by the excessive quantities of paper money there issued, and the depreciated condition thereof, for want of proper funds to support its credit. The House, by way of palliative, addressed the throne to put a tem-. Dorary stop to the evil, by instructing the several governors not to give their assent to any farther laws of that nature, without an express proviso, that they should not take effect, till his Majesty's approbation had been first obtained.
Such instructions were accordingly sent; and those to the governor of Pennsylvania were dated August 21st,
1740. Notwithstanding all which, the Lords of Trade and Plantations (having already in their hands a full and clear account of the currency, as established by the eighty thousand pounds act, as also of the rates of gold and silver, from the year 1700 to the year 1739, and having been moreover convinced, by the merchants trading to that province, that such a sum was not only reasonable but necessary for carrying on the commerce of the country) thought fit to recommend the said act to the royal acceptance and ratification, and ten days afterwards the Lords Justices passed it into a law.
Here the affair slept for several years, except that the assembly, in conformity to an order which accompanied the instructions just mentioned, caused a second state of their currency to be transmitted the following year to the Lords of Trade; and before it was again resumed in Parliament, the several incidents, next to be recited, took place.
When the attempt upon Carthagena was under consideration, the northern colonies were called upon to furnish soldiers for that service, and Pennsylvania among the rest. The assembly was at that time composed, as it had hitherto generally been; consequently this demand could not but be productive of scruples and difficulties in point of conscience. That, however, they might discharge all obligations at once, they voted four thousand pounds for the King's use, and the governor took upon himself to raise the soldiers.
This was a duty of office; and, if he had discharged it properly, what would have given universal satisfaction. The labor of the plantations is performed chiefly by indented servants brought from Great Britain, Ireland, and Germany; nor, because of the high price it bears, can it be performed any other way. These ser