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just sent me to peruse his answer in writing, in which he warmly recommends it, and enforces it by strong reasons; which gives me great pleasure, as it corroborates what I have been saying on the same topic, and from him appears less to be suspected of some American bias.

February 14th, 1767. Great changes being expected keeps men's minds in suspense, and obstructs public affairs of every kind. It is therefore not to be wondered at, that so little progress is made in our American schemes of the Illinois grant, and retribution for Indian losses.

June 13th, 1767. The Illinois affair goes forward but slowly. Lord Shelburne told me again last week, that he highly approved of it, but others were not of his sentiments, particularly the Board of Trade. Lyman is almost out of patience, and now talks of carrying out his settlers without leave.

August 28th, 1767. Last week I dined at Lord Shelburne's, and had a long conversation with him and Mr. Conway (there being no other company) on the subject of reducing the American expenses. They have it in contemplation to return the management of Indian affairs into the hands of the several provinces, on which the nations border, that the colonies may bear the charge of treaties, and the like, which they think will then be managed more frugally, the treasury being tired with the immense drafts of the superintendents.

I took the opportunity of urging it as one mode of saving expense in supporting the out-posts, that a settlement should be made in the Illinois country, expatiated on the various advantages, namely, furnishing provisions cheaper to the garrisons, securing the country, retaining the trade, raising a strength there, which,

on occasions of a future war, might easily be poured down the Mississippi upon the lower country, and into the Bay of Mexico, to be used against Cuba, the French Islands, or Mexico itself. I mentioned your plan, its being approved by Sir William Johnson, and the readiness and ability of the gentlemen concerned to carry the settlement into execution, with very little expense to government. The secretaries appeared finally to be fully convinced, and there remained no obstacle but the Board of Trade, which was to be brought over privately before the matter should be referred to them officially. In case of laying aside the superintendents, a provision was thought of for Sir William Johnson. He will be made governor of the new colony.

October 9th, 1767. I returned last night from Paris, and just now hear that the Illinois settlement is approved of in the Cabinet Council, so far as to be referred to the Board of Trade for their opinion, who are to consider it next week.

November 13th, 1767. Since my return, the affair of the Illinois settlement has been renewed. The King in Council referred the proposal to the Board of Trade, who called for the opinion of the merchants on two points, namely, whether the settlement of colonies in the Illinois country and at Detroit might not contribute to promote and extend the commerce of Great Britain ; and whether the regulation of Indian trade might not best be left to the several colonies that carry on such trade; both which questions they considered at a meeting where Mr. Jackson and I were present, and answered in the affirmative unanimously, delivering their report accordingly to the Board. We shall know in a few days what report the Board will make to the King in Council. Enclosed I send you the notice I


received from the Board to attend the first call with the merchants. You must know, government here is quite tired of having the management of Indian affairs, the superintendents drawing for such immense sums to be given in presents to the Indians; who, nevertheless, they say, are not kept in so good temper as when every colony managed the neighbouring Indians, and put the crown to no expense. It seems, therefore, the present inclination to drop the superintendencies, and provide for Sir William in some other way; but whether they will finally resolve on this, is rather uncertain ; for they seem afraid of changing any thing in settled measures, lest something should go wrong, and the opposition make an advantage of it against them. The merchants, to a man, disliked the plan of regulating the trade under the superintendents, and speak strongly against it. The plan I think I have seen in your hands, as proposed by the Board of Trade.

November 25th, 1767. As soon as I received Mr. Galloway's, Mr. Samuel Wharton's, and Mr. Croghan's letters on the subject of the boundary, I communicated them to Lord Shelburne. He invited me the next day to dine with him. Lord Clare was to have been there, but did not come. There was nobody but Mr. Maclean. My Lord knew nothing of the boundary's having been agreed on by Sir William ; had sent the letters to the Board of Trade, directing search to be made there for Sir William's letters; and ordered Mr. Maclean to search the secretary's office, who found nothing. We had much discourse about it, and I pressed the importance of despatching orders immediately to Sir William to complete the affair. His Lordship asked who was to make the purchase, that is, who should be at the expense. I said, that if the line included any lands within the grants of the charter colonies, they should pay the purchase money of such proportion. If any within the proprietary grants, they should pay their proportion.

But what was within royal governments, where the King granted the lands, the crown should pay for that proportion. His Lordship was pleased to say, he thought this reasonable. He finally desired me to go to Lord Clare as from him, and urge the business there, which I undertook to do.

Among other things at this conversation, we talked of the new settlements. His Lordship told me he had himself drawn up a paper of reasons for those settlements which he laid before the King in Council ; acquainting them, that he did not offer them merely as his own sentiments; they were what he had collected from General Amherst, Dr. Franklin, and Mr. Jackson, three gentlemen that were allowed to be the best authorities for any thing that related to America. I think he added, that the Council seemed to approve of the design ; I know it was referred to the Board of Trade, who, I believe, have not yet reported on it, and I doubt will report against it.

I waited next morning on Lord Clare, and pressed the matter of the boundary closely, upon him. He said they could not find, that they had ever received any letters from Sir William concerning it, but were searching farther; agreed to the necessity of settling it, but thought there would be some difficulty about who should pay the purchase money; for that this country was already so loaded, it would bear no more. We then talked of the new colonies. I found he was inclined to think one near the mouth of the Ohio might be of use in securing the country, but did not much approve that at Detroit. And, as to the trade, he imagined it would be of little consequence, if we

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had it all, but supposed our traders would sell the peltry chiefly to the French and Spaniards at New Orleans, as he heard they had hitherto done. Pray tell me, if you know, whether that has been the case with regard to the skins belonging to our friends B. W. & M.

March 13th, 1768. The purpose of settling the new colonies seems at present to be dropt, the change of American administration not appearing favorable to it. There seems rather to be an inclination to abandon the posts in the back country, as more expensive than useful. But counsels are so continually

so continually fluctuating here, that nothing can be depended on. secretary, Lord H., is, I find, of opinion, that the troops should be placed, the chief part of them, in Canada and Florida, only three battalions to be quartered in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania; and that Forts Pitt, Niagara, Oswego, &c. should be left to the colonies to garrison and keep up, if they think it necessary for the protection of their trade. Probably his opinion may be followed, if new changes do not produce other ideas. The letters from Sir William Johnson, relating to the boundary, were at last found, and orders were sent over, about Christmas, for completing the purchase and settlement of the difference about it. My Lord H. has promised me to send duplicates by this packet, and urge the speedy execution, as I represented to him the danger that these dissatisfactions of the Indians might produce a war.

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