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R. SHERLEY being weary of this controversie, and

desirous of an end, (as well as them selves,) write to IVI Mr. John Atwode’ and Mr. William Collier, • 2. of the inhabitants of this place, and of his speatiąll aquaintance, and desired them to be a means to bring this bussines to an end, by advising and counselling the partners hear, by some way to bring it to a composition, by mutuall agreemente. And he write to them selves allso to that end, as by his letter may apear; so much therof as concernse the same I shall hear relate.

Sir: My love remembered, etc. I have writte so much concerning the ending of accounts betweexte us, as I profess I know not what more to write, etc. If you desire an end, as you seeme to doe, ther is (as I conceive) but.2. waise; that is, to parfecte all accounts, from the first to the last, etc. Now if we find this difficulte, and tedious, haveing not been so stricte and carefull as we should and oughte to have done, as for my owne parte I doe confess I have been somewhat to remisse, and doe verily thinke so are you, etc. I fear you can never make a perfecte accounte of all your pety viages, out, and home too and againe, etc.: So then the second way must be, by biding, or com[237]pounding; and this way, first or last, we must fall upon, etc. If we must warr at law for it, doe not you expecte from me, nether

1 The Assistants chosen this year were Thomas Prence, William Collier, Myles Standish, Edward Winslow, John Brown, Timothy Hatherley and Edmund Freeman. Plymouth Col. Rec., 11. 8.

? John Atwood was in Plymouth as early as 1636, coming from London. He served as an Assistant in 1638, and as treasurer of the Plantation from 1641 to his death in 1644. He mentions no children in his will dated October 20, 1643, but left a fair estate to his wife Ann. She died June 1, 1654. Winsor, History of Duxbury, 180.

* This was but to pretend advantage, for it could not be done, neither did it need. - BRADFORD.



will I from you, but to cleave the heare, and then I dare say the lawyers will be most gainers, etc. Thus let us set to the worke, one way or other, and end, that I may not allways suffer in my name and estate. And you are not free; nay, the gospell suffers by your delaying, and causeth the professors of it to be hardly spoken of, that you, being many, and now able, should combine and joyne togeather to oppress and burden me, etc. Fear not to make a faire and reasonable offer; beleeve me, I will never take any advantage to plead it against you, or to wrong you; or else let Mr. Winslow come over, and let him have shuch full power and authority as we may ende by compounding; or else, the accounts so well and fully made up, as we may end by reconing. Now, blesed be God, the times be much changed here, I hope to see many of you returne to your native countrie againe, and have shuch freedome and libertie as the word of God prescribes. Our bishops were never so near a downfall as now; God hath miraculously confounded them, and turned all their popish and Machavillian plots and projects on their owne heads, etc. Thus you see what is fitt to be done concerning our perticulere greevances. I pray you take it seriously into consideration; let each give way a litle that we may meete, etc. Be you and all yours kindly saluted, etc. So I ever rest,

Your loving friend,

JAMES SHERLEY. Clapham, May 18, 1641.

Being thus by this leter, and allso by Mr. Atwodes and Mr. Colliers mediation urged to bring things to an end, (and the continuall clamors from the rest,) and by none more urged then by

1 The references in the text are to the measures then pending in the “Long Parliament,” relating to the exclusion of the Bishops from the House of Lords, and the impeachment of Strafford and Laud. See vol. 1. pp. 14-17.

* James Sherley “was the son of Robert Sherley, gentleman, of London, and Mary, daughter of Richard Holman of Godstone, Surrey, and grandson of Robert Sherley, Cheshire. James married Mary, daughter of William Mott of Colchester, Essex, and granddaughter of Robert Mott, whose will is given in Waters' Gleanings, 1135.” N. E. Hist. Gen. Reg., lxiv. 85; Visitation of London, 1633-1635 (Harleian Society), 235, 236.

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their own desires, they tooke this course (because many scandals had been raised upon them). They apoynted these •2• men before mentioned to meet on a certaine day, and called some other freinds on both sides, and Mr. Free-man, brother in law to Mr. Beachamp;1 and having drawne up a collection of all the remains of the stock, in what soever it was, as housing, boats, bark, and all implements belonging to the same, as they were used in the time of the trade, were they better or worce, with the remaines of all commodities, as beads, knives, hatchetts, cloth, or any thing els, as well the refuse as the more vendible, with all debts, as well those that were desperate as others more hopefull; and having spent diverce days to bring this to pass, having the helpe of all bookes and papers, which either any of them selves had, or Josias Winslow, who was

their accountante ; with and they found the

sume in all to arise (as the things were valued) to aboute 1400li. And they all of thein tooke a

voluntary but a sollem oath, in the presence one of an other, and of all their frends, the persons abovesaid that were now presente, that this was all that any of them knew of, or could remember; and Josias Winslow did the like for his parte. But the truth is they wrongd them selves much in the valuation, for they reconed some catle as they were taken of Mr. Allerton, as for instance a cowe in the hands of one cost 25li. and so she was valued in this accounte ; but when she

John Beachampe was son of Thomas Beachampe of Cosgrave, Nottinghamshire, and Mary, daughter of Edward Clarke of Rode, in the same county. He married Alice, daughter of Edmond Freeman of Pulbury, co. Sussex. Visitation of London, 1633-1635 (Harleian Society). A letter from him to William Paddy, his son-in-law, dated July 20, 1649, will be found in Freeman Genealogy, 23 n. In it he speaks of “brother (William] Coddington," the governor of Rhode Island.

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came to be past away in

parte of paymente, after the agreemente, she would be accepted but at 4li. 155. [238] Also, being tender of their oaths, they brought in all they knew owing to the stock; but they had not made the like diligente search what the stocke might owe to any, so as many scattering debts fell upon afterwards more then now they knew of.

Upon this they drew certaine articles of agreemente betweene Mr. Atwode, on Mr. Sherleys behalfe, and them selves. The effecte is as folloeth.

Articles of agreemente made and concluded upon the 15. day of October,

1641. etc.


Imp[rimis): Wheras ther was a partnership for diverce years agreed upon betweene James Sherley, John Beacham, and Richard Andrews, of London, marchants, and William Bradford, Edward Winslow, Thomas Prence, Myles Standish, William Brewster, John Alden, and John Howland, with Isaack Allerton, in a trade of beaver skines and other furrs arising in New England; the terme of which said partnership being expired, and diverse summes of money in goods adventured into New - England by the said James Sherley, John Beachamp, and Richard Andrews, and many large returnes made from New-England by the said William Bradford, Ed: Winslow, etc.; and differance arising aboute the charge of 2. ships, the one called the White Angele, of Bristow, and the other the Frindship, of Barnstable, and a viage intended in her, etc.; which said ships and their viages, the said William Bradford, Ed: W. etc. conceive doe not at all appertaine to their accounts of partnership; and weras the accounts of the said partnership are found to be confused, and cannot orderley appeare (through the defaulte of Josias Winslow, the booke keeper); and weras the said W. B. etc. have received all their goods for the said trade from the foresaid James Sherley, and have made most of their returnes to him, by consente of the said John Beachamp and Richard Andrews; and wheras also the said James Sherley hath given power and authoritie to Mr. John Atwode, with the advice and consente of William Collier, of Duxborow, for and on his behalfe, to put shuch an absolute end to the said partnership, with all and every accounts, reconings, dues, claimes, demands, whatsoever, to the said James Sherley, John Beacham, and Richard Andrews, from the said W. B. etc. for and concerning the said beaver trade, and also the charge the said.2. ships, and their viages made or pretended, whether just or unjuste, from the worlds begining to this presente, as also for the paimente of a purchas of 1800li. made by Isaack Allerton, for and on the behalfe of the said W. B., Ed: W., etc., and of the joynt stock, shares, lands, and adventures, what soever in New-England aforesaid, as apeareth by a deede bearing date the 6. Noo’br 1627; and also for and from shuch sume and sumes of money or goods as are received by William Bradford, Tho: Prence, and Myles Standish, for the recovery of dues, by accounts betwexte them, the said James Sherly, John Beachamp, and Richard Andrews, and Isaack Allerton, for the ship caled the White Angell. Now the said John Attwode, with advice and counsell of the said William Collier, having had much comunication and spente diverse days in agitation of all the said differances and accounts with the said W. B., E. W., etc.; and the said W. B., E. W., etc. have also, with the said book-keeper spente much time in collecting and gathering together the remainder of the stock of partnership for the said trade, and what soever hath beene received, or is due by the said attorneyship before expresed, and all, and all manner of goods, debts, and dues therunto belonging, as well those debts that are weake and doubtfull (239) and desperate, as those that are more secure, which in all doe amounte to the sume of 1400li. or ther aboute; and for more full satisfaction of the said James Sherley, John Beachamp, and Richard Andrews, the said W. B. and all the rest of the abovesaid partners, togeither with Josias Winslow the booke-keeper, have taken a voluntarie oath, that within the said sume of 1400li. or theraboute, is contained what soever they know, to the utmost of their rememberance.

In consideration of all which matters and things before expressed, and to the end that a full, absolute, and finall end may be now made,

a and all suits in law may be avoyded, and love and peace continued, it is therfore agreed and concluded betweene the said John Attwode,

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