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solisiter to draw it up, if ther were a presidente for it. So the Lord Keeper furthered it all he could, and allso the solissiter; but as Festus said to Paule,1 With no small sume of money obtained I this freedom; for by the way many ridells must be resolved, and many locks must be opened with the silver, ney, the golden key. Then it was to come to the Lord Treasurer,2 to have his warrente for freeing the custume for a certaine time; but he would not doe it, but refferd it to the Counsell table. And ther Mr. Allerton atended day by day, when they sate, kingdom most exactly. . . . He had, in the plain way of speaking and delivery, without much ornament of elocution, a strange power of making himself believed." His connection with plantation interests was not slight, for he was an adventurer in the Virginia Company under the "third charter," was consulted by the New England Company on the renewal of their patent in 1622-1623, served on the Virginia Commission of 1624, and on the commission for plantations in 1634. His services were chiefly those of a lawyer. Brown, Genesis of the United States, 866.
1 Acts XXII. 28. "And the chiefe captaine answered, With a great summe obtained I this freedome."
2 The post of Lord High Treasurer was an especially onerous one under Charles I. Richard, Baron Weston, and afterwards first Earl of Portland, was appointed to the office in July, 1628. "This slippery post had been held by five living treasurers, none of whom had retained it more than a few months, and Clarendon suggests that Weston's removal was only prevented by Buckingham's death on 23 August." The unpopularity of Buckingham was shared by Weston, whose greed was openly denounced, the charge
being made of his receiving money from Spain. The difficulties in his way were great, for he encountered the extravagance of the King, the lavish expenditures of the Queen, and the hatred of the courtiers who failed to draw favors from the royal bounty. It is hardly probable that a bribe was expected from Allerton, as the freedom from customs had been inserted in former patents to colonizing companies. The records of the Privy Council contain no record of such a question being raised in behalf of the Plymouth plantation.
* Freedom from customs or subsidies on merchandize, etc., either inward or outward, was granted in the Charter of Massachusetts Bay, for seven years, and also freedom from all taxes, subsidies and customs in New England for a like term of seven years, and from all taxes and impositions for the space of twenty and one years, "upon all goods and merchandizes at any tyme or times hereafter, either upon importation thither, or exportation from thence into our realm of England, or into any other our dominions," except after seven years five per cent on imports into England or other of the King's dominions, "according to the ancient trade of merchants." Haz
but could not gett his petition read.1 And by reason of Mr. Peirce his staying with all the passengers at Bristoll, he was forct to leave the further prosecuting of it to a solissiter. But ther is no fear nor doubte but it will be granted, for he hath the cheefe of them to freind; yet it will be marvelou[s]ly needfull for him to returne by the first ship that comes from thence; for if you had this confirmed, then were you compleate, and might bear shuch sway and goverment as were fitt for your ranke and place that God hath called you unto; and stope the moueths of base and scurrulous fellowes, that are ready to question and threaten you in every action you  doe. And besides, if you have the custome free for 7 years inward, and 21. outward, the charge of the patent will be soone recovered, and ther is no fear of recovering [obtaining 2] it. But shuch things must work by degrees; men cannot hasten it as they would; werefore we (I write in the behalfe of all our partners here) desire you to be ernest with Mr. Allerton to come, and his wife to spare him this one year more, to finish this great and waighty bussines, which we conceive will be much for your good, and I hope for your posteritie, and for many generations to come.
Thus much of this letter. It was dated the March 19, 1629.3 By which it appears what progress was made herein, and in part what charge it was, and how left unfinished, and some reason of the same; but in truth (as was afterwards app[r]ehended) the meaine reason was Mr. Allerton's policie, to have an opportunitie to be sent over againe, for other regards; and for that end procured them
ard, 1. 249. The distinction made by Sherley between the exports and imports is not clear. The question of tonnage and poundage, under discussion at this very time (1629), involved the power of the King arbitrarily to impose duties upon imports. If the King could lay customs duties by prerogative, no limit could be placed upon the possible exactions. This claim involved a grave constitutional question, in which the plantations seemed to be concerned only indirectly. No considerable revenue could be expected from the trade of the plantations, and the northern or New England settlements had no important staple of export except pelts.
1 That is, the petition prepared by Bradford.
This word is here substituted on the authority of Bradford's Letter Book.
thus to write. For it might then well enough have been fin[i]shed, if not with that clause aboute the custumes, which was Mr. Allertons and Mr. Sherleys device, and not at all thought on by the colony here, nor much regarded,1 yet it might have been done without it, without all quest[i]on, having passed the kings hand; nay it was conceived it might then have beene done with it, if he had pleased; but covetousnes never brings ought home, as the proverb is, for this oppertunytie being lost, it was never accomplished, but a great deale of money veainly and lavishly cast away about it, as doth appear upon their accounts. But of this more in its place. Mr. Alerton gave them great and just ofence in this (which I had omited 2 and almost forgotten), in bringing over this year, for base gaine, that unworthy man, and instrumente of mischeefe, Mor-Thomas Morbon
ton, who was sent home but the year
1 The customs revenue in 1604 had been farmed for a period of seven years for £112,400 a year. In 1610, when the renewal of the farm was considered, the income had risen to £136,000. Additional duties were imposed (1) for encouragement of production, as, for example, that on Spanish tobacco, favoring the Virginia leaf; or again, they were imposed (2) to encourage domestic commerce, through heavier duties on alien than on English traders; or, finally, (3) they were imposed for purely revenue purposes, as the duty on currants. As customs had grown out of the international relations of the kingdom, over which the King had full control, he could at will open or close the gates or ports of trade, and levy such duties as he should think meet. In return he was bound to fortify the coasts and protect the merchants on the seas from piracy or the oppression of foreign states. While the King did not always fulfil his part of the reciprocal obligation, in theory no person or goods could leave or enter the realm without royal permission. Freedom from customs did not involve so much a relief in money as it did an absence of restriction. At the same time what the crown granted, the crown could revoke; so the excuse given by Sherley for the delay in obtaining the patent has the appearance of concealing the true reason, which concerned Sherley and his partners more immediately than New Plymouth.
This paragraph is written on the reverse of page 167 of the original manuscript. * "Being ship'd againe for the parts of New Canaan, [he] was put in at Plimmouth in the very faces of them, to their terrible amazement to see him at liberty; and [they] told him hee had not yet fully answered the matter they could object against him. Hee
the towne (as it were to nose 1 them), and lodged him at his owne house, and for a while used him as a scribe to doe his bussines, till he was caused to pack him away. So he wente to his old nest in the Massachusets, wher it was not long but by his miscariage he gave them just occation to lay hands on him; and he was by them
onely made this modest reply, that he did perceave they were willfull people, that would never be answered: and he derided them for their practises and losse of laboure." Morton, New English Canaan (Prince Society), 304.
1 In the meaning of to confront, face, or oppose a person in an impudent or insolent
2 The existence of the Massachusetts Bay settlement at Naumkeak completely altered Morton's situation. His lands, if he ever had a right to them, were included in the Company's patent, and he could not trade with the Indians without bringing down upon him hostile action on the part of both the Plymouth and the Naumkeak people. He appears to have given an account, substantially accurate, of his troubles. Endecott, according to his instructions, summoned the old planters, whose lands were now included under the Massachusetts patent, to a conference at Naumkeak, where he sought to bind them to recognize the authority of the new government. The tenor of the articles was that "in all causes, as well Ecclesiasticall as Politicall, wee should follow the rule of God's word." Morton refused to subscribe unless the words “so as nothing be done contrary or repugnant to the Lawes of the Kingdome of England," be added. Endecott also sought to bring all trade under one management; Morton not only remained without the agreement, but he derided the simplicity of the truckmasters, boasting of his gain of six or seven to one, while they had obtained scant profit. He was, in short, still a thorn in the flesh of the magistrates, who determined to get him out of the country. Not being honest of carriage, or conforming to good order and government, he fell under the general instructions given to Endecott for the suppression of factious spirits. It has been suggested that Morton's attitude was due to his confidence in the efforts of Oldham and Gorges to secure advantage against the Massachusetts Bay Company, and even possession of a part of its territory. Adams, Introduction to New English Canaan, 40. Endecott sought to arrest Morton, but the latter gaining knowledge of his intention escaped, though losing everything but his gun and powder, with which he supported himself through the winter of 1629. With the arrival of Winthrop in 1630, Morton's career in the region ended, for he could no longer hope for an increase of his own strength or any consideration from his opponents. He was "sent for by process," and after a short hearing was condemned to the bilbows, to be transported to England, and to suffer the loss of all his property. Further "that his howse, after the goods are taken out, shalbe burnt downe to the ground in the sight of the Indians, for their satisfacĉon, for many wrongs hee hath done them from tyme to tyme." Mass. Col. Rec., 1. 75. For four months he was held,