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INSTRUCTIONS FROM THE COMMISSIONERS TO

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EDWARD RANDOLPH, ESQ.

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COLLECTOR, SURVEYOR, AND SEARCHER, OF HIS MAJESTIE's CUSTOMS

IN NEW ENGLAND.

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[The subsequent instructions were the occasion of much litigation and other difficulty in the jurisdiction of Massachusetts.--Randolph let no opportunity escape of demonstrating his resolution to have them executed to the very letter. Nor was he any less backward to make his complaints known both here and in England, when they were disregarded, -as was frequently the case. On the other hand, our civil authorities were far from wishing him success in carrying his purpose into all the effect, which he desired and sought. They looked on the instructions, as trenching too much on their Charter privileges. As a matter of course, – such clashing views and sympathies rendered these instructions an object of deep attention and of prominent importance with the supporters and opposers of full Royal Prerogative.

It will be observed, that one of the signatures, -as made by the Commissioners of the Customs in London,-is that of Sir George Downing. The last gentleman's history is particularly interesting to New England, as one of their greatest friends and as a member of the first class, who graduated at Harvard College.--Pub. Com.]

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Instructions from the Commissioners for managing, leauying,

and causing to be collected his Majestie's Customes, Subsidies, and other Duties in England, to Edward Randolph, Esq., Collector, Surueyor, and Searcher of his Majestie's Customes, in New England, in pursuance of the direction of the Right Honourable Thomas, Earle of Denby, Lord High Treasurer of England.

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First,—Whereas, in pursuance of an Act of Parliament, made in the twenty-fifth year of his Majestie's Reign, entitled “An Act of better securing the Plantations' Trades," which we herewith deliuer to you, -we have deputed you to be Collector, Surueyor, and Searcher of all the Rates, Duties, and Impossisions arising, and growing due to his

Majestie, by virtue of the said Act, in his Majestie's Colonye of New England, (that is to say) the Massachusetts' Colonye, Plymouth Colonye, Connecticutt Colonye, RhodeIsland, the Prouince of Mayne, and New Hampshire, and all other his Majestie's Colonys, and Islands in New England, which you are by the best wayes and means, you can to leauy, and collect according to the tenour of the said

And because the said act hath settled the Collection of the said Duties, under such penalties as by seuerall Lawes are inflicted for non-payment of, or defrauding his Majestie of his Customes in England, wee doe therefore deliuer to you a Book of Rates, wherein are the principall Lawes relating to the management of the Customes in England, and the Plantation Trades; videlicet, the Act of Tonnage and Poundage, the Act of Navigation, the Act for preuenting Fraud, the Act for Encouragement of Trade, and the Act for better regulating the Plantation Trade, and the said Act for the better securing the Plantation Trade; and you are to conforme yourselfe to the seuerall rules for managing the Customes according to the said Lawes, in all things wherein the same may be practicable with you, and to inform vs, or the Commissioners of his Majestie's Customes in England for the time being, what power, authoritie, or direction may be further necessary for the carrying on this bis Majestie's seruice in the said Colonys.

2. You are before your goeing out of England, to take the oaths of allegiance and supremacy before one of the Barons of the Exchequer, or the Lord Mayor of London, and the vsuall Oath for the faithful execution of your office before vs.

3. Having soe done you are forthwith to repaire to the said Colonye in New England, and to setile your vsuall Residence in the Port of Boston, in Massachusetts Colonye.

4. You are to appoint one Deputy att least in each of the aforementioned Colonys by Commission under your band and Seale, and for whome you will be answerable ; who are to take the vsuall Oaths for the faythsull execution of their employments before the Gouernour, or Deputy Gouernour, of such Colonye, respectively, before they enter · upon the same, and then you are to furnish them with Copyes of your Instructions and some of the forementioned

Acts for their better information and guidance in the performance of their Duties.

5. You are to take care that noe Ship doe trade in his Majestie's Colonys in New England, but such as are by Lawe permitted to trade there, and you are to take care that all Ships and Vessells which by Lawe may trade in any of bis Plantations that shall desire to ship and take on board any of the Plantation Commodities enumerated in the aforesaid Act of the twenty-fifth yeare of the King, doe not lade the same vntill it appears to you or your Deputy, that such Ship has giuen bond for carrying the same to England, Wales, or Berwick only, or to England, Wales, or Berwick or to some other of his Majestie's Plantations; and in case her bond be to carry the same to England, Wales or Berwick, or to some other of his Majestie's Plantations, in such case you are diligently to examine whether she take in any Tobacco of the growth of New England, as also in case she take in any Tobacco or other of the enumerated Goods which have not payd his Majestie's Customes at the Plantation, from whence the same canre, to collect his Majestie's Dutyes for the same, according to the said Act of the twenty-fifth yeare of the king. And you are further to take care that before they take in any part of these sorts of Goods they make entry of the Ship with you or your Deputy, and also before their clearing, make report upon Oath of the contents of their Lading as to those sorts of Goods, both as to quantity and quality, to the best of their knowledge with the name of the Master that Laded the same, and if any ship shall take in any of the said sorts of Goods chargeable with the Dutie aforesaid, before such entrye made as aforesaid, the Master thereof is liable to the penalty of one hundred pounds according to the Act for preuenting fraud, and the Statute made the first of Eliz. Chapt. 11. And, moreover, in case any such Ship shall take in any Goods chargeable with the Duties impossed by the said Act of the twenty-fifth yeare of the King before bond giuen as aforesaid, you are to make seizure of the said Ship and Goods, and proceed against the same according to Lawe.

6. In case any ship which by lawe may trade in any of his Majestie's plantations, shali ariue in any of his Majes

tie's Colonyes in New England, with any of the said sort of goods of the growth of any of his Majestie's Colonyes, you are carefully to examine whether such ship had before lading, giuen bond according to law, and in case she had giuen no bond, then you are to make seizure of her and her lading according to lawe. And if it appeare she has given bond, you are to examine whither such bond was to come to England, Wales, or Berwick only, or to goe to England, Wales, or Berwick, or to some other of his Majestie's plantations, (formes of which bonds will be herewith deliuered to you), and, in case her bond was giuen to come to England, Wales, or Berwick only, you are to forbid her to vnload with you; and in case, (notwithstanding thereof) she shall putt any of the said goods on shoare, you are to keepe an exact account, and take good proof upon oath, of the quantity and qualitie of the said goods put on shoare, and transmit the same to vs, that we may take care for the suing and recouering the penalty and forfeiture of the bond giuen for such ship; and in case such bond was giuen in any of his Majestie's plantations, you are also with the first conveniency to giue notice, and the proof thereof to the Gouernor of such plantation and our Collector there, that they may take care for the speedy putting such bond in suit; but if her bond was to come to England, Wales, or Berwick, or to some of his Majestie's plantations in such case, you are to permit her to vnlade, examining the certificates from our officers, in the place where she laded, whereby to satisfie yourselfe, that his Majestie's duties were payd for the same, according to the aforesaid act of the 25th of the King; and in case it shall appeare that such ship hath any of the goods for which his Majestie's customes are not payd, you are to make seizure thereof, according to the lawes and rules for collecting his Majestie's customes in England.

7. You are to take notice, that the payment of the respective rates imposed by the Act of the 25th yeare of the King, vpon the several plantation Commodities therein named, ihat shall be shipped or laden on board any ship or vessel, (for which bond shall not be first giuen, to bring the same to England, Wales, or Berwick only), doth not giue liberty to carry the same afterwards to any other

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place, than to some of his Majestie's plantations, or to England, Wales, or Berwick, and that notwithstanding the payment of the said duties, they are to giue bond to carry all the said goods to England, Wales, or Berwick, or to some of his Majestie's plantations, and not to be permitted to be laden vntil such bond giuen as is directed in the next preceding instruction.

8. And because there is no duty imposed by the said act vpon such ships, for which bond shall before lading be giuen to come to England, Wales, or Berwick only, you are to take spetiall care that none of the said goods which shall be pretended for any of the shipping bound to England, Wales, or Berwick, be vnder that colour stolen on board ships bound elsewhere, that haue not giuen bond as aforesaid, and so evade the Duties Chargeable by this Act to which end it will be necessary not only frequently to Visit all Ships or Vessells which haue not given bond as aforesaid, to come to England, Wales, or Berwick only, but allso where you find it necessary to put men on board such ships or vessells, to take an accompt of all goods laden on board them, and if anye of the aforesaid sorts of goods shall be found on board for which is noe warrant, you are to seize and prosecute the same according to law.

9. You are to take notice, that if the duties appointed by the act of the 25th of the king and certifyed to haue been payd before the said goods were brought into New England; in such case, there is nothing more to be payd for the same, neither

vpon their landing in New England, nor vpon theire shipping out againe, but in case any thereof shall be shipped out, you are to take care that the ship doe first giue sufficient bond with one surety as aforesaid, to carry the same to England, Wales, or Berwick only, or to England, Wales, or Berwick, or some other of his Majestie's plantations aforesaid.

10. You are to keep exact accompts of all moneys by you received, or goods in lieu thereof, for his Majestie's customs, or vpon the accompt of seizures and forfeitures of ship or goods, and to make perfect inventory thereof into a booke to be kept for that purpose, with the names of the respective merchants entering the same with the Ship’s names and their Masters, and the burthen of the

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