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such an exchange. I own such persons were much safer if bound, than at liberty ; but where the affection of the parent and the reason of the man die, the person is a fitter inhabitant for Moorfields than Georgia. I must notice further, that not only are parents incapable, for want of credit, to provide for themselves, being necessitated to dispose of their servants for want of provisions; but if they could, only their eldest son could reap the benefit; their younger children, however numerous, are left to be fed by Him who feeds the ravens; and if they have no children, their labor and substance descends to strangers. How, sir, could you, or indeed any free-born spirit, brook such a tenor? Are not our younger children and daughters equally entitled to our bowels and affections? And does human nature end with our first-born, and not extend itself to the rest of our progeny and more distant relations? And is it not inverting the order of nature, that the eldest son should not only enjoy a double portion, but exclude all the younger children ? and having an interest independent of the parents', how natural is it he should withdraw that obedience and subjection which proceeds from paternal authority and filial dependence! The trustees are but a channel to convey to us the king's rights, and cannot in law or equity, and, I dare say, will not abridge those rights. Can we suppose that we are singled out for a state of misery and servitude, and that so many honorable personages are instruments of it? Far be the thoughts from us! The genius of the British nation, so remarkably zealous for liberty and the rights of mankind, will never suffer British subjects, who have not fled their country for crimes, but voluntarily proffered their service, and risked their all, upon the confidence of the public faith and the trustees' honor, to accomplish a settlement upon the most dangerous point of his majesty's dominions. I say, it will never allow such to be deprived of public promises of the natural liberties of British subjects. As we are on a frontier, where our lives and fortunes may more frequently come into dispute than other people's; our privileges and supports should be proportionably greater; for who would venture his life to secure no property, or fight to secure to himself poverty and misery; and no doubt our cunning and vigilant adversaries, the French and Spaniards would know how to make their own advantage. The king has been very gracious, and your
endeavors generous and useful, in procuring a regiment for our protection ; but let me add a truth equally certain, that only the flourishing of the colony can support that regiment; and not only the support of the soldiers, but your own honor, glory and reputation are intermixed with the fate of the colony, and must stand or fall with it.
"To come closer to the point, please to consider the consequences of refusing the representation of the colony, whereof your Excellency as one of the honorable board will be furnished with a copy, and how these consequences may affect the colony, the nation, the trustees, the military establishment in this province, the Indians and your Excellency.
“As to the colony, the deferring hitherto the necessary relief, has already too tragically affected it, by dispersing a great part of the inhabitants; the remainder, in a languishing condition, supported more with faint hopes and a continued reliance on the honor of the nation and trustees, than victuals; while want and meagre famine guard the door of many, and render them equally incapable to stay or go. The town, so beautifully situated to the honor of the contriver, bearing the most visible signs of decay and mortality before it is fully born ; and the once cultivated plantations now overgrown with weeds and brush, are so many hic jacets of such and such persons and families! I wish it were possible to draw a veil over this tragic scene! But, sir, our case is more clamant than a thousand tongues, and will reach the ears and pierce the hearts of every true Briton. If such the effects of delay, what will the total dissolution of the colony produce ? Such a body of miserable people, orphans and suppliants, will be heard by the justice of the nation ; and if it shall appear, that the too positively adhering to an impracticable scheme, and the refusing those obvious means that would answer the proposed end, or withholding those just rights which we are entitled to have been the cause; we should have right to recover damages from the authors of our miseries. In all places where settlements were attempted by the English, and found untenable, the settlers were taken home upon public charge, their losses recompensed, and they made otherwise useful to the community; while we are neither allowed to do for ourselves here or elsewhere. As to the second point, how the nation would be affected by it; it
is first obvious, that all the noble ends and advantages they proposed are lost, and sums of money expended to no purpose but to inform the French and Spaniards of the importance of a pass which they would not fail to possess. It were impossible to make a second settlement upon the present plan ; and if it is to be altered in the favors of others, why not of us who have risked and spent our all in the adventure? How the trustees may be affected by it in all respects, I shall not say; a parliamentary inquiry into their management, I no ways question but they could entirely satisfy ; but all good men will regret, that so honorable a body should lose that glory and fame which the prosperous success of the colony would have crowned them with. I have formerly asserted, that only the flourishing state of the colony can support the military; and indeed without a colony, it were easier to maintain a garrison in Tangier, on the coast of Africa, than in the south of Georgia. One regiment would little suffice to withstand the enemy; and yet so small a handful may be reduced to discontent, straits and wants, notwithstanding all the bounty of a king or prudence of a general. As to the Indians; what could we expect less than being scorned and despised ? That they should immediately fall in with the tempting proffers of the French and Spaniards, and so Great Britain cut off from that valuable branch of the Indians' trade? For how indeed could they expect execution of treaties or protection from people who, without the force of any enemy, could not preserve their own schemes of government from falling to pieces? How the tragedy must affect your Excellency would be presumption in me to determine: I only know, that to see those you honor with the name of children, in want and misery; that settlement which should have perpetuated your name to posterity with the greatest honor; become the foil of all your great undertakings; and the expectations of all the world, from your promising endeavors, setting in a cloud and obscurity ; must affect your Excellency in a way suitable to your human and generous disposition.
“ Sir, we still love, honor and respect you, (whatever low, selfish-minded persons, the bane of society, may surmise to the contrary) and will continue to do so, while we can have any hopes of your pursuing measures consistent with our prosperity. But, sir, smiles cannot be expected amidst dis
appointments and wants; and there is no altering the course of nature. Love and gratitude are the tribute of favors and protection, and resentment the consequence of injuries received ; and in disappointments of this nature much more reasonably than in those of love, do the contrary passions take place in the same degree. What then remains, but that you embrace those obvious measures, that will retrieve our desperate affairs ; restore to us, in Mr. Oglethorpe, our father and protector ; whose honor and affection were depended upon; secure to yourself a society that love and honors you, and who will always be ready to sacrifice both life and fortune to your honor and protection; and your name with blessings will be perpetuated. If in this I have, by a sincere and well-meant freedom, given offence, I heartily ask pardon; none was intended : and I only request, that, while truth keeps the stage, the author may be allowed to remain incog. behind the scenes.
“I am, sir, your, &c.
“ THE PLAIN-DEALER.”
This year there was promised a bounty of two shillings sterling on every bushel of corn, and one shilling on every bushel of pease and potatoes, raised in the county of Savannah: this induced some few to plant; but they were miserably deceived; for few or none of them ever received their full bounty, and not many any part thereof, (although if they had received it twice over, it could not have answered the end.) People being thus by a chain of disappointments and miseries, most of them rendered incapable to subsist, and toward the end of this summer, beginning to despair of having any favorable answer to their representation, or hopes of redress, left the colony faster than ever; and when the answer (or rather denial) came over, they went in such numbers that the whole province of South Carolina was overspread with them, and in and about the town of Charleston alone, this autumn, above fifty Georgians died in misery and want, most of whom were buried at the public charge.
In September, a printed paper, entitled, an Answer to the Representation, &c., was sent over, and arrived at Savannah: and of which this is an exact copy.
“The Answer of the Trustees for establishing the Colony of
Georgia, in America, to the Representation from the inhabitants of Savannah, the 9th of December, 1738, for altering the tenure of the lands, and introducing negroes into Georgia.
"To the Magistrates of the town of Savannah, in the province of Georgia.
“ The trustees for establishing the colony of Georgia in America, have received by the hands of Mr. Benjamin Ball of London, merchant, an attested copy of a representation, signed by you the magistrates, and many of the inhabitants of Savannah, on the 9th of December last, for altering the tenure of the lands, and introducing negroes into the province, transmitted from thence by Mr Robert Williams.
“ The trustees are not surprised to find unwary people drawn in by crafty men, to join in a design of extorting by clamor from the trustees an alteration in the fundamental laws, framed for the preservation of the people, from those very designs.
“But the trustees cannot but express their astonishment, that you the magistrates, appointed by them to be guardians of the people, by putting those laws in execution, should so far forget your duty, as to put yourselves at the head of this attempt.
“ However they direct you to give the complainants this answer from the trustees, that they should deem themselves very unfit for the trust reposed in them by his majesty on their behalf, if they could be prevailed upon, by such an irrational attempt, to give up a constitution, framed with the greatest caution for the preservation of liberty and property; and of which the laws against the use of slaves, and for the entail of lands, are the surest foundations.
“And the trustees are the more confirmed in their opinion of the unreasonableness of this demand, that they have received petitions from the Darien, and other parts of the province, representing the inconvenience and danger, which must arise to the good people of the province from the introduction of negroes. And as the trustees themselves are fully convinced, that besides the hazard attending that introduction, it would destroy all industry among the white inbab