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tober. The charter of this province is as compleat
fett bay and countries and parts royal, and all other mines, minerals, adjacent, bounded on the west, or precious stones, quatries, woods, weiterly, to the iniddle or channel wood-grounds, rocks, flates, and all of a river there, commonly called and fingi:lar other cominodities, and known by the name of Paw- jurisdictions, royalties, privileges, catuck alias Pawcawtuck river, and franchises, preminences and hereso along the said river, as the great ditaments whatsoever, within the er or middle Stream thereof reach- faid tract, bounds, lands and islands eth or lies up into the north cow aforesaid, to them or any of them try, northward unto the head there. belonging, or in any-wiseappertainof, and from thence by a Itrait line ing. To have and to hold i he same, drawn due north, until it meet with unto the said governor and comthe iouth line of the Mafiachusetts pany, and their succellors for ever, colony, and on the north or nor- upon trust, for the use and benefit therly, by the aforesaid south or of themielves, and their associates, southerly line of the Mallachuritts freemen of the said colony, their colony or plantation, and extend heirs and aligns. To be holden of ing towards the eait or eastwardly us, our heirs and succeflors as of the three English miles, to the east and manor of East-Greenwich, in our north-eatt of the most eastern and county of Kent, in free and common north-eastern parts of the aforesaid focage, and not in capite, nor ty Narragansett bav, as the said bay Knight's service. Yielding and paylieth or extendeth itself from the ing therefore to us, our heirs and ocean on the south or southwardly fucceffors, only the fifth part of all unto the mouth of the river which the ore of gold and silver, which runneth towards the town of Pro- from time to time, and at all times vidence, and from thence along the hereafter, shall be there gotten, had eastwardly side or bank of the said or obtained, in lieu and satisfaction river (higher called by the name of of all services, duties, fines, forfeiSeacunk river) up to the falls called tures made or to be made, claims Patucket falls, being the most west- and demands whatsoever, to be to wardly line of Plymouth colony; us, our heirs or successors, there. and so from the said falls, in a strait fore or thereout rendered, made or Jine due north, until it meet with paid ; any grant or clause in a late the aforesaid line of the Maffachu- grant to the governor and company fetts colony, and bounded on the of Connecticut colony in America, 'fouth by the ocean, and in parti- to the contrary thereof in any wife cular the lands belonging to the notwithitanding : the aforesaid Pawtown of Providence, Patuxet, War- catuck river having been yielded wick, Mifquammacock alias Paw after much debate, for the fixed and caruck, and the rest upon the main certain bounds between these our land, in the tract aforesaid, toge. said colonies, by the agents thereof, ther with Rhode-Illand, Blocke who have also agreed, that the said Iland, and all the rest of the islands Pawcatuck river shall be also called and banks in the Narragansett bay, alias Narragancett or Narragansett and bordering upon the coast of river, and to prevent future disputes the tract afv-eraid, (Fisher's-lland that otherwise might arise thereby; only excepted) together with all for ever hereafter, Thall be construfirm lands, foils, grounds, havens, ed, deemed and taken to be the ports, rivers, waters, tithings, mines Narragancett river, in our late grant
as it is possible for any royal charter to be, and if the sovereigns of England had ever any power to grant franchises of that fort, this is undoubtedly as good a security for the liberties of that province, as reason would defire* : In reading the annals of nations, men who have no other object in view except truch, would be ready to conclude from this and the following charter, that these two provinces were to all intents and purposes as free as any of the freeholders in Great Britain, and had as good a right to be their own legislatures, as either the freemen of counties or towns in England. But casuists who have a mind to dispute every thing, and can, for particular ends and reasons, affirm what no man of common sense is able to give his assent to, think no shame to deny the very immediate fignifica
to Connecticut colony, mentioned any act, clause or sentence, in any as the easterly bounds of that co- of the said colonies provided, or lony. And further, our will and that shall be provided, to the conpleasure is, that in all matters of trary in any wise notwithstanding. public controversies, which may And lastly, we do for us, our heirs fall out between our colony of Pro- and successors ordain and grant unvidence plantation, to make their to the said governor and company, appeal therein to us, our heirs and and their successors, by these presuccessors, for redress in such cases, fents, that these our letters patents within this our realm of England ; shall be firm, good, effectual and aand that it shall be lawful to and vailable, in all things in the law, to for the inhabitants of the said colo all intents, constructions and purny of Providence plantation, with poses whatsoever, according to our out lett or molestation, to pass and true intent and meaning herein berepass with freedom into and fore declared; and shall be construthrough the rest of the English co- ed, reputed and adjudged, in all lonies, upon their lawful and civil cases, most favourably, on the beoccasions, and to converse, and hold half, and for the beft benefit and becommerce, and trade with such of hoof of the said governor and comthe inhabitants of our other English pany, any their fucceffors, although colonies as Mall be willing to admit express mention, &c. In witness, them thereunto, they behaving &c. witness, &c. themlelves peaceably ainong them;
Per ry2:07. Regem. * CONNECTICUT CHARTER. Charles the Second, by the grace presents shall come, greeting. of God, &c. to all to whom there Whereas by the several navigations,
discoveries, discoverits,' and succesful plantas ons and interest there : now know tions of divers of our loving sub ye, that in con?ideration thereof, jects of this our realm of England, and in regard the said colony is reseveral lands, isunds, places, colo- mote from other of the English lan. nies and plantations, have been or. tations in the places aforesaid, and dained and letrled in that part of to the end the arrairs and business, the contiuent of America called which shall from time to time hap. New-England, and thereby the pen or arise concerning the same, trade and commerce there hath may be duly ordered and managed, been of late years much increased; we have thought fit, at the huma and whereas we have been inform. ble petition of the persons afore. ed by the humble petition of our faid, and are graciously pleased to trusty and well-beloved John Win- create and make them a body pothrop, John Mason, Samuel Wills, litic and coroporate, with the Henry Clarke, Matthew Allen powers and privileges herein after ! Tohn Tappan, Nathan Gould, inentioned ; and according our Richard Treate, Richard Lord, will and pleasure is, and of our espeHenry Woolcot, John Talcott, cial grace, certain knowledge, and Daniel Clarke, John Ogden, Thoa mere motion, we have ordained, mas Wells, Obadial: Brewton, John constuted and declared, and by Clarke, Anthony Hawkins, John these presents, for us, our heir Deming, and Mitthew Cainfield, and successors, do ordain, constitute being perfons principally interest and declare, that they the said John ed in our colony or plantations of Winthorp, Jolin Mafon Samuel Connecticut in New England, that Willis, Henry Clerke Matthew Al. the same colony, or the greateit Jen, Thos. Tapon, Nathan Gould, part thereof, was purchased and Richard Treate, Richard Lord, obtained for great and valuable Hcury Woolcot, John Talcott, considerations, and some other Danial Clarke, John Ogden, Thoa part thereof gained by conquest mnas Wells, Obadiah Brewton, John and with much difficulty, and at Clarke, Antony Hawkins, John the only end avours, expence and Deming, and Mathew Camfield, charge of them and their associates, and all such others, as now are or and those under whioin they claim, hereafter Mall be almitted and subclued and improved, and there- niade free of the company and fo. by become a considerable enlarge- ciety ofour colany o Connecticit, nient and addition of our domini in America, thail, from time to
tion of this charter. As if words either had no mean, ing, or were liable to change their signification at the nod of politicians, they boldly affirm that these colo, nies never had a right to be their own legislature.
It would be accounted a very hard case in England, for no juft reason, to take away the charters of all cor porations in the nation, many of which have no other fecurity than the grants of princes, and the prescription of time. If these societies were refused the pri, vilege of representation, according to the laws of the Nn
land, they could not be juriy obliged to pay any re. venue to the government. If the case of the coloniits be different from this, they are only laves, and not free subjects of the Bri:ih empire.
Virginia, which first had a very large signification, though granted to a company then resident in Lon. don, is held by much the same tenure as the other colonies, with this difference, that the council has, by the charter, a power to make laws for the good of the colony, according to their own discretion;
time, and for ever hereafter be further we will and ordain and by one body corporate politic, in these presents for us our heirs and fact and name, by the naine of successors, do declare and appoint, Governor and company of the That for the better ordering and English colony of Connecticut in managing of the affairs and busiNew-England in America; and nefs of the said company and their that by the same name they, and successors, there shall be one gotheir successors shall and may have vernur, one deputy-governor, and perpetual succession, and Mall and twelve alliftants to be froin time may be persons able and capable to time, conftructed, elected, and in the law to plead and be iin- chosen out of the freemen of the pleaded, to answer and to be an- said company for the time being, Twered unto, to defend and be de- in such manner and form as hearfended in all and singular suits, after, in these presents is expreffed ; causes, quarrels, matters, actions which said officers shall apply themand things of what kind or nature selves to take care for the best dirsoever; and also to have, take pofing and ordering of the general pollers, acquire, and purchase business and affairs of and conlands, tenements, or heredita- cerning the lands and hereditaments, or any goods or chattels, ments herein after-mentioned to and the same to lease, grant, de- be granted, and the plantation mise, alien, bargain, sell, and dis- thereof and the government of pose of, as our otlicr liege people the people thereof. And for the of this onr realm of England, or better execution of our royal pleaany other corporation or body po- fure, herein we do for us, our litic within the same may lawful. heirs and succeflors aslign, name, ly do. And further, I hat the said constitute, and appoint The aforegovernor and company and thoir faid John Winthrop to be the first Tuccesors shall and may for ever and present governor of the said hereafter, have a common feal to company, and the fàid John Maserve and use for all causes, mat- fon to be the deputy-governor and ters, things, and affairs whatsoever, the said Samuel Willis, Matthew of them and their successors, and Allen, Nathan Gould, Henry the same seal to alter, change, Clarke, Richard Treate, John Oge break, and make new from time den, Thomas Tappen, Jonn Talto time, at their wills and plea- cott, Thomas Wells, Henry Woolfures, as they shall think fit. And cot; Kichard Lord, and Daniel
whereas the other colonists are bound to confine all new laws to the spirit of the constitution of Great Britain. This is a power granted to persons living within England, to rule British subjects at discretion, which is not consistent with either the character of Englishmen, nor the constitution of England. There are three charters which were granted at different times by King James the first, to the Virginia company, one to Sir Thomas Gates, Sir George Somers, and others, April 10, 1606, and two to the treasurer and com
Çlerke, to be the twelve present there to consult and advise in and atliftants of the said company, to about the affairs and business of continue in the said several oceffis the said company; and that the gorespectively until the second Thurf- verfor, or in his abfence the depu. day, which shall be in the month ty-goveryor of the said company of October, now next coming. for the time being, and such of the And further, we will, and by these assistants and freemen of the said presents, for us, our heirs, and company as shall be fo elected or fuccefiors, do ordain and grant, deputed, and be present at such That the governor of the said meeting or assembly, or the greatcompany, for the time being, or eft number of them, whereof the in his absence, by occasion of fick governor or deputy.governor, and ness or otherwise, by his leave lix of the alliltants at least to be or permission, the deputy governor seven, shall be called the general for the time being ihall and may, assembly, and Thall have full power from time to time upon all occa- and authority to alter and change fions, give order for the ailem- their days and times of meeting or bling of the said company, and general assemblies, for the electing calling them together, to consult the governor, deputy-governor, and advise of the business andi af- and alliltants, or other officers, fairs of the said company, and or any other courts, affenıblies, that for ever hereafter, twice in or meetings, and to chufe, nomievery year that is to fay, on every nate, and appoint such, and so second Thursday in Učtober, and many other persons as they shall on every second Thursday in May, think fit, and shall be willing to or oftener, in case it shall be requi, accept the same, to be free of the fite, the aslistants and freemen of said company and body politic, the faid company, or such of them and them into the fame to admit, not exceeding two persons from and to elect and constitute such each place, town, or city, who officers as they shall think fit and shall be from time to time, there requisite for the ordering, mana. unto elected or deputed by the ma. ging, and disposing of the affairs jor part of the freemen of the re- ' of the said governor and company, spective tens, cities, and places.' and their successors. And we do for which they shall be fo elected hereby for us, our heirs and fuc. or deputed, shall have a general ceffors, establish and ordain, That maçeting or assembly, then and once in the year, for ever liereafter,