« ZurückWeiter »
Councillors Carpenter, Clark, and Pusey, who joined in signing the certificate.
The membership of the Governor's Council, a few months after its establishment, was slightly changed by the death of Phineas Pemberton, Penn's staunchest friend in Bucks Co., and the admission, in accordance with Penn's wishes, of John Finney, eldest son of Samuel Finney. On the same day as John Finney, viz: April 21, 1702, Logan qualified as a member.
On the death of William III, March 8, 1701-2, Queen Mary having died previously, her sister Anne, wife of Prince George of Denmark, succeeded to the throne. Staunch as she was for the Anglican Church, she was no enemy to her old acquaintance, Penn, the friend of her father, James II. In a letter of July 14, 1706, unsigned but attributed to Penn, the writer speaks of his own steady and secret (private) and public services to her in many ways, for which not everybody besides himself had the power or talent.
Edward Hyde, by courtesy Viscount Cornbury, son of the Queen's uncle, Henry, 2nd Earl of Clarendon, having been appointed Governor of New York and Commander of the Militia of the Jerseys and Connecticut by the late King, came to Burlington in June, 1702, and was invited to Philadelphia, where he spent the night at Shippen's, and, with a retinue thirty in number, was entertained at the Proprietary's expense at as handsome a dinner, it was said, as his Lordship had seen in America. The next day, he was escorted from Burlington to Pennsbury, and there entertained, about fifty being in company. By his manners, the Quakers were so much pleased with this cousin of the Queen that they thought, that, if proprietary government were abolished, they would be satisfied to have him as Governor. Furthermore, they were becoming indifferent to the bill before Parliament, if only certain privileges could be retained, the more spiritually minded thinking that acts of government were foreign to their profession, and those who loved Penn feeling that his life would be easier, and he probably happier, if he had the Proprietaryship only. Naturally, there was, however, a desire that the reflections upon the Quakers' conduct of affairs should be dispelled, and that the country should not fall under the control of the non-Quaker partisans, who had cast such reflections.
On July 10, 1702, without the receipt of an order from the English government, but preparatory to inviting those inclined to form a militia, in view of the new war against France and Spain, proclamation of Anne's accession was made. On the 24th, the war was proclaimed. In a few days, one company of militia was started. George Lowther, a lawyer from Nottinghamshire, but of a Yorkshire family, was made the captain. But the enrolment was not a success. The Churchmen wished it a failure, so that the English government would think it necessary to take the dominions into its own hands. The Quakers could not join the colors on account of their principles. There was, moreover, an idea that those who joined would be required to proceed to Canada. So, after great efforts, only about a score or two of the poorest men, with only six swords among them, and, we are told, just as deficient in shoes and stockings, mustered for a review.
The Aldermen of the City claimed in 1702 the right to act as Justices in the Court of Common Pleas for both County and City; and, when Hamilton and some lawyers thought them wrong, and Capt. Finney, the head of those commissioned for the County, refused to sit with the Aldermen, the Mayor's Court was held, and all fines for offences in the cognizance of those Aldermen, including fines of keepers of public houses for selling without a license, were claimed. Penn, hearing of this, hoped for some change of feeling, but was inclined to recall the corporation's charter, as certain lawyers thought he could legally, and he was confident that the English government would approve.
Quary making charges against Penn in particular and the Quakers in general, to show their malfeasance as a cause for abolishing their government, and Penn answering, and making counter charges against Quary, there was a fruitless contention, some of the papers in which appear in the printed Penn and Logan Correspondence. Quary returned to America with a letter from the Commissioners of Trade, desiring him to acquaint the gentlemen of the Lower Counties of their letter of Oct. 25, 1701, being under consideration for their relief, and to assure them of the Queen's protection and care for their welfare and security. Quary also brought a letter of protection from the Queen requiring all Governors, Lieutenant-Governors, magistrates, and officers civil and military to assist him. Both letters are printed in Virginia Mag. Hist. & Biog., Vol. XXIII.
The people of the Lower Counties did not like the Charter, or Frame of Government of the Province and Territories, granted on Oct. 28, 1701, because, according to Quary, of the toleration of Deists and of the eligibility of Papists to office; and there was a denial of the validity of the Charter, in view of its not having been agreed to by a clear majority of the Assembly. On the day for the first election for Assemblymen under the Charter, none were chosen by the Lower Counties. The Upper Counties, comprising Pennsylvania proper, or the Province strictly so called, chose the required number, viz: Joseph Growdon, John Swift, William Paxon (now Paxson), Jeremiah Langhorne, David Lloyd, Anthony Morris, Samuel Richardson, Griffith Jones (formerly mentioned as a Quaker), Nicholas Pyle, Andrew Job, John Bennet, and John Worrall. These arrived in Philadelphia at the time for organizing the House, and, acting upon the default of the Lower Counties, declared the disunion spoken of in the Charter to have taken place, and accordingly asked for the increase provided for in such case in the number of representatives of Bucks, Chester, and Philadelphia, including two from the City.
At this time, William Penn's title to the government and territory of New Castle &ct. was being strongly questioned in England. Hamilton and the friends of Penn saw that the relations of the two parts of the dual colony required conciliation or at least temporizing: so Hamilton pleaded with the representatives of the Province not to take the radical measure. He pointed out that tobacco, which was the chief commodity sent to England, and was mostly furnished by the Territories, would be so incumbered by a separate legislature at the place of growth as to divert the trade from Philadelphia. The inhabitants of the Territories were very likely, upon the erection of a distinct Assembly for the Province, to remonstrate to the Queen, and pray that they, being thrown off and left destitute, be taken under her immediate protection: and such remonstrance would probably be taken advantage of by the officials in England desirous of weakening Proprietary government, and cause the royal approbation of Penn's appointment of the Lieutenant-Governor to be restricted to Pennsylvania. If the Assemblymen were bent upon a separation from the Lower Counties, it would be better first to wait to see whether, as the result of the questioning of Penn's title to those Counties, the Queen would make the separation, in which case the Pennsylvanians would not incur blame. As to increasing the number of representatives, the Lieutenant-Governor could not see how it could be done until the next election appointed by the Charter, the first of October following. The Assemblymen, nearly all being Quakers, were inclined to insist, declaring that, by the union, the first purchasers from Penn had been unable to have the privileges they had expected. However, it being thought that the Lower Counties might elect representatives, if summoned to do so by writs, writs were issued, and the Assemblymen from Pennsylvania agreed to await the result. The Lower Counties duly chose representatives, but these expressed unwillingness to sit with members chosen under direction of the Charter, which the Lower Counties did not recognize. The Assemblymen from Pennsylvania, coming back to Philadelphia, were willing to join with those chosen by the Lower Counties, but would do so only on the basis of the Charter being in force. Although there was a letter from the English government through Lord Cornbury requiring a contribution to the fortification of the frontiers at Albany, and there seemed a necessity for a law for a militia composed of those without scruples against bearing arms, so as to repel invasion from the sea, Hamilton could only dismiss the legislators. Then the twelve representatives of Philadelphia, Bucks, and Chester certified under hand and seal that they desired the filling up of the body for the Province according to the Charter, with two members from the City, and so that Philadelphia County should have eight members, Bucks nine, and Chester nine. It does not seem as if such disparity for the rural districts was intended by Penn when he said that each county should “not have less than eight persons;" and Griffith Jones, in joining the other representatives, excepted against the extra member from Bucks and Chester.
The bill for the abolition of proprietary governments had failed to pass at the session of Parliament during which Penn decided to go to England to fight the bill: but it was subsequently pressed by the persons connected with the governmental bureaus in London. Penn suggested such modification as would reunite the military government to the Crown, and give to the