« PreviousContinue »
laws and government of your Majesty's realm of England, and to the great grievance and oppression of some thousands of your Majesty's loyall subjects, but more particularly to those who now humbly address your Majesty, who have bin thereby injured and abused both in their civil and religious concernments ; our Church by their rage and fury having been greatly hurt and damnified, and daily threatened to be pulled downe and destroyed ; our Minister hindered and obstructed in the discharge of his duty and office, and wee now put under the burthen of most excessive rates and taxes to support the interest of a disloyal prevailing party amongst us, who, under pretence of the publique good, designe nothing but ruin and destruction to us and the whole countrey.
And as we cannot but from the bottom of our hearts declare our utter abhorrence and dislike of these and all other their seditious and rebellious actings and proceedings, so wee are resolved with patience to undergoe and suffer whatsoever shall be imposed upon us, and to maintaine our duty and allegiance to your Majesty, not doubting that by your Majesty's gracious favour and protection, wee shall be relieved and delivered from the same.
Amongst these our sufferings, wee were greatly comforted, when to our abundant joy and satisfaction, wee received that joyful news of your Majesty's most great and glorious enterprise for the defence and maintenance of the Protestant Religion and interest ; and of your Majesty's happy accession to the Crowne. And since your Majesty has bin graciously pleased to have particular regard to the religion of the Church of England, so wee hope that small branch thereof which hath but lately sprung forth in this remote part of the world, will not want your Majesty's favour and countenance, that it may (as no doubt but by God's blessing it will) grow up and flourish, and bring fruites of religion and loyalty, to the honour of Almighty God, and the promotion and increase of your Majesty's interest and service.
And to that end, we humbly beseech your Majesty, that we may not be left under the anarchy and confusion of government, under which this Country hath so long groaned, but that the same may be ruled and governed by a
Governor and Councill to be appointed by your Majesty, with the advice of an assembly of the people in matters proper for their cognizance, as others your Majesty's plantations, are ruled and governed ; with such other libertyes and priveleges as your Majesty shall thinke most proper and conducing to your Majesty's service, and the generall good and welfare of your subjects in the severall parts of this your territory and dominion of New England.
That the great God of Heaven would continue to bless your Majesty with a glorious success in all your undertakings ; enable you to vanquish and overcome all your enemies, and give you a long, peaceable, and prosperous raigne over us and all your subjects throughout your realm and dominions; and that they may never be wanting to shew forth their duty and obedience to your Majesty, is and shall be the hearty and continued prayers of your Majesty's dutyfull and loyall subjects, in the name and at the desire of the whole Church.
SAMUELL MILES, M. A.
[Some loose leaves, which appear to have been torn from an old letterbook, contained the following letters, interspersed with mercantile orders and correspondence. These were kindly presented for publication in our Collections, by the Rev. Charles W. Upham, of Salem, who received them from Daniel Waldo Higginson, Esq., of Cambridge. They are curious, as showing the actual state of Commerce of Salem, in 1700, and as suggesting the advantages which might be anticipated to Salem or Boston, from the importation of East India articles through a mercantile establishment in London. Although the project was not adopted at the time, it is worthy of remark that, nearly an hundred years after, the enterprise, by a direct communication with India, rendered Salem the most prosperous commercial mart in New England.
The letters will, also, give some interesting particulars of the family of the Rev. John Higginson, son and successor in the ministry, of the venerable Francis Higginson, first Minister of Salem. He died December 9th, 1708, in his 93d year, eight years after the date of the last letter. John, his oldest son, by whom most of the letters were written, was a respectable merchant in Salem; and is named with just commendation in the letter of his father; to which may be added, he was long a member of the Governour's Council. He deceased March 23d, 1720, aged 73. Nathaniel, to whom the letters were addressed, was born at Guilford, Connecticut, October 11th, 1652; and was educated at Harvard College, where he graduated in 1670. He went to England in 1674; and was with Lord Wharton about seven years, as steward and tutor to his children. He was employed in the mint of the Tower, 1681 ; and went, 1683, in the Company's service to Fort St. George, in the East Indies; was member and secretary of the Council, and afterwards Gorernor of the Factory at the fort. He married Elizabeth Richards in 1692; returned to England, with his wife and children, in 1700, and established himself as a merchant in London, where he died in 1708, the same year with his Father. Thomas (another son) went to England; learnt the goldsmith's trade; came home; embarked for Africa, and was never heard of. Francis went to his uncle at Kirby Stevens in England; was educated at the University at Cambridge there; and died of the small pox in London, aged 24. Henry was brought up as a merchant; went to Barbadoes as Factor ; and there died of small pox in 1685.
To Sir Josiah CHILD, Knight, Governour of the East India
[Salem, N. E.), 18th July, 1692.
Much honoured Sir.
would be pleased to send the inclosed letter to my Brother, Mr. Nathaniel Higginson, who, I understand, is in your service at Fort St. George in the East Indies, and has there received many marks of your favour.
favour. He went out of England in the year 1683 ; and, since his departure from England, we have had but one letter from him, which was on his first arrival there; and suppose that his letters have, some way or other, miscarried.
I pray your Honour that if any letters come from him, directed either to my honoured Father or myself, you would be pleased to send them to us; or if no letters come to hand, that you would be pleased to inform me, by a line, how it is with him ;—which will greatly oblige your Honour's humble servant at command, in any thing I am capable of, to the utmost of my power.
To Mr. Nathaniel Higginson.
18th July, 1692.
I have sent you many letters since your arrival at the East Indies, but have not been so happy as to receive any from you.* I therefore venture these lines under cover, to Sir Josiah Child, in hope they will find the way to you
by his means.
* The letter referred to in the preceding, must be one to his Father.
I long to hear of your welfare ; and trust that you will, by the first opportunity, afford me a line thereof.
New England is much altered since you left it. Through mercy our honoured Father enjoys a good measure of health and strength; being yet able to preach his turn every sabbath. He is now seventy-six years old. Myself, wife and five children, Mary, John, Sarah and Elizabeth, are in good health. Brother Thomas lives at Guilford. Sister Anna, at Salem. Our brother Wharton died in London about two years since, as I suppose you have heard. His estate, being much entangled, I doubt there will be nothing left for his two daughters, Sarah and Bethiah. I hope, if God bless you, you will remember them in time.
Dear Brother, let not the distance of place be a means to make us forget each other. Remember the good days and reciprocal affections we once enjoyed ; and let me be again happy in your company here. Our Father much desires to see you again, if it may be, before he dies.
Thus commending you to the protection and blessing of the Almighty, I remain your ever loving Brother,
From Rev. John Higginson of Salem, to his son Nathaniel.
[I learn by your] letter, that if the Lord please to continue your life, and that you meet with no extraordinary losses, you intended to send something more. This deserves my acknowledgment and approbation; and I pray God to direct you in the time and quantity, &c., which I leave to yourself; only I think meet to inform you, how it may be done to the best advantage, to attain the end of your liberality, when God shall give you an opportunity to bring your intentions into execution. Considering my age, and the need of your brother Thomas, and sister Doliver, I have taken a special and sufficient care of making provision for them ; viz., whereas there was almost five hundred pounds of arrears due to me from the towne since