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Philadelphia, only taking care that provisions for them on their passage be more plentiful, and that they are less crowded than on board his ships. The terms are, they pay half their passage themselves on embarking, and six weeks after their arrival, to pay the other half, which they generally do, with private contracts to people; but in case they do not, then they may be bound by the ship's master for four or five years, if they are above twenty-one years of age; but if under, they may be bound until the age of twenty-one, if men, and eighteen if girls. It must be at the same time confessed, that divers of these foreigners have, during the time of their servitude, shown themselves of a dogged disposition, surly and obstinate, discovering an averseness to their masters' orders, which proceeds (as we imagine) from a dislike of their being subject to strangers; whilst others again have behaved well; but it may be alleged with truth, that when, or wheresoever among us, any of them have worked for their own benefit, they are indefatigable and outdone by none, which joined with great parsimony, fits them for excellent settlers when free.
To enable the industrious English settlers to go on with planting, who are truly desirous of cultivating land, we humbly conceive nothing could be a greater inducement to it, than that the honorable trustees would please to import yearly, so long as they see good, a number of English or Welch servants, such as are used to hard labor in the country, and strangers to London, to be contracted with in England, to serve the trustees for five years, from two to four pounds yearly wages, according to their ability, for finding themselves in apparel. Those servants, on their arrival, to be hired by the inhabitants for one year, the person hiring to pay over and above the contracted wages, one pound yearly to the trustees, so that in five years the passage money will be paid. And to enable the planters to pay the said wages, it is humbly proposed, that a bounty be settled on every product of the land, viz., corn, peas, potatoes, wine, silk, cotton, flax, &c., to what value the honorable Trust shall judge meet, to be limited in the following, or any other manner, viz., for the first years the said bounty to be payable for corn, peas, potatoes, &c., only, and thenceforward to cease wholly, and the residue of years, wherein any bounty should be allowed, to be payable only for silk, wine, oil, &c., by which means the planter, so as
sisted, might be able to live, whilst at the same time he propagates vines, mulberry trees, &c., from which he can expect no immediate benefit before they come to some maturity. A rule to be made, that they who hire the said servants shall employ them only in plantation-work of their own, and not let them out at hire to work at handicraft trades, or any other business, &c.; that each servant shall serve one whole year, and if they part at the year's end, he shall find himself another master within days, to serve for one year also, and so on to the end of their respective times to serve, by which means good masters will not want good servants, and it will be a great means to make other masters become good, in order to get good servants, or else be content with the bad,
If any disputes arise between masters and servants, such to be determined by the magistrates, according to the laws of England, wherein the magistrate, concerned as a party, shall not appear as a judge, or offer to interfere with the opinion of the others, but acquiesce in their determination, if it happens to be in favor of the servant, whom they ought to defend from cruel usage, and where they find such evil treatment, either through too severe correction, or want of sufficient wholesome food, according to the custom of the colony, the magistrates to have power of vacating such services, and obliging the servants to find another master.
The kind intention of the honorable trustees to extend the tenure of lands in the manner proposed, (as signified to their secretary here,) gave great satisfaction to all reasonable persons, who seemed to desire no more, and only wish to find that ratified, which they apprehend to be not yet done, and that occasions some anxiety about it.
Whether these helps, or whatever other the honorable trustees shall be pleased to afford us, the ability of the inhabitants to support themselves must still in a great measure depend on the industry and frugality of each. Divers in the province who understand planting, and are already settled, provided they can attain to some live stock, can and do support themselves. Men working for hire, boat-men, packhorse-men, &c., support themselves very well, if they will work; and more such would, were they to be found. Shopkeepers, tradesmen, and artificers, such as tallow-chandlers, soap-boilers, brasiers, saddlers, shoemakers, tanners, &c., live very well on their business here, and many more might, were there more merchants to import goods for supplying the Indian traders, which would increase the resort to Savannah, whereas those traders are now obliged to get the greatest part of what they want from Charleston, in South Carolina. New planters, and such as go on upon particular improvements, such as wine, silk, &c., will need some assistance. Magistrates, constables, tithing-men, and others whose time is taken up in the public service, require some allowance for the same. It is also needful for the well-being of the colony, that roads should be maintained; posts for communicating of letters, and forts upon the frontiers, as well towards the Indians as Spaniards, be supported. As likewise other public works, which the people here are in no degree able to bear.
When the east part of the province of Georgia was taken possession of under the trustees' charter by Mr. Oglethorpe, according to the limits of the British dominions in America, forts were erected upon the extremities to keep up niarks of possession. The strength and materials were of such a nature, as the men he had with him could make, and sufficient for defence against any strength that could be brought against them by the neighboring Indians, or Spaniards in Florida.
The first foundation of the colony was upon tenures, by which each lot was to be occupied by a freeholder, obliged to take arms for the defence of the colony ; and this militia, with the assistance of our friendly Indians, held the colony against all attempts of the Spaniards from Augustine, who alarmed them almost every spring, pretending a claim, and, therefore, a right to invade, without being said to infringe the peace, but did not take one foot of ground from us.
In the beginning of the year 1738, great preparations were made at the Havanna, and troops were sent from thence and old Spain to Augustine, for the taking possession (as they called it) of that part of Carolina in which Georgia was comprehended, and which they gave out belonged to them. Upon the trustees having early notice of these great preparations, they applied to his Majesty to take upon him the protection of the colony, which in its infancy was unable to repel so great a force. His Majesty thereupon ordered a reg. iment to be raised, and posted on the Spanish frontiers, since which the war is broke out, and that regiment, with the assistance of troops and Indians raised in Georgia and Carolina, in conjunction with a squadron of men of war, attacked Augustine, and after raising the siege of that place, remained in the possession of the frontiers, as before the war; but for the defence of the colony now, it is necessary to have vessels that can act in shoal water, on so large and extended a frontier towards the sea, and rangers who can ride the woods; as also artillery, and all other things necessarily appertaining thereto, and means for augmenting our fortifications equal to the increased strength of the Spaniards.
We whose names are hereunto subscribed, being duly sworn in open Court, do declare, that the above state of the province of Georgia is true, according to the best of our own knowledge, and from the most certain informations we could obtain from others; and do desire, that the seal of this Court may be affixed thereto.
* Pat. Graham,
Anthony Camuse, .
N. B. Those seven marked with *, at their own voluntary desire, were admitted to sign it, and were sworn before the magistrates out of Court. vol. II.
The Deposition of Lieutenant George Dunbar, taken upon
the Holy Evangelists, before the Recorder of the Town of Frederica, Jan. 20, 1738–9.
This deponent says, that he arrived in Georgia the beginning of June last, with the first detachment of General Oglethorpe's regiment; and from that time to the beginning of August, all the carpenters of the said three companies, and a certain number of other soldiers were employed in building clapboard huts for the said companies, and the other soldiers were employed in unloading vessels and boats loaded with clapboards, and other necessaries for building, and provisions of different kinds, often up to their necks in water: they were also employed in carrying clapboards, &c., upon their backs to the camp, in clearing ground from roots of trees, &c., for a parade, burning the wood and rubbish upon it
, carrying of bricks, and burning lime; and the artists who were excused from these works, wrought at their own trades, without standing still, by reason of heat. The hours of labor were from daylight till between eleven and twelve ; and from between one and two, and sometimes between two and three, till dark. All that time the men kept so healthy, that often no man in the camp ailed in the least, and none died except one man, who came sick on board, and never worked at all; nor did I hear, that any of the men ever made the heat a pretence for not working.
And this deponent further says, that he has been often in America, and frequently heard, that in the negro colonies, the hire of white men is more than that of negroes. And this deponent knows, that in South Carolina white ship carpenters and caulkers have about one third more wages than a negro of the same trade or profession, this deponent having often paid wages to both; and also knows there is the aforesaid difference in many handicrafts, and verily believes it is so in all; and affirms, that the same is owing to the white men exceeding the negroes in the same professions, both in quantity and quality of their work.
Sworn before me the day and year above written,