DELAWARE UNDER WILLIAM PENN
PENN was very well represented in the new province and his interests intelligently cared for from the time that Lieut-Gov. Brockholls, of New York, surrendered the colony, until he himself arrived and took formal possession. His cousin, Capt. William Markham, Deputy-Governor, as has been seen, arrived out in October, 1681. Markham was in New York on June 21st, but the first record we have of his appearance on the Delaware is the following:
"Obligation of Councilmen:" "Whereas, wee whose hands and Seals are hereunto Sett are Chosen by Wm Markham (agent to Wm. Penn, Esq., Proprietor of ye Province of Pennsylvania) to be of the Councill for ye sd province, doe hereby bind ourselves by our hands and Seals, that wee will neither act, nor advise, nor Consent unto anything that shall not be according to our own Consciences the best for ye true and well Government of the sd province, and Likewise to Keep Secret all ye votes and acts of us, The sd Councell, unless Such as by the General Consent of us are to be published. Dated at Vpland ye third day of August, 1681.
"Robert Wade, Morgan Drewet, Wm. Woodmanse, (W.W. The mark of) William Warner, Thomas Ffairman, James Sandlenes, Will Clayton, Otto Earnest Koch, and ye mark (L) of Lacy (or Lasse) Cock."
In September Upland Court appears to have been reorganized under Markham's instructions and jury trials instituted. The justices present at the meeting of this newly-organized court were William Clayton, William Warner, Robert Wade, William Byles, Otto Ernest Cock, Robert Lucas, Lasse Cock, Swen Swenson, and Andreas Rankson, five of them being members of Markham's Council. The clerk of the court was Thomas Revell, and the sheriff's name was John Test. The first jury drawn in this court the first drawn in Pennsylvania was in the case of assault and battery (Peter Earicksen vs. Harman Johnson and wife), and their names were Morgan Drewet, William Woodmanson, William Hewes, James Browne, Henry Reynolds, Robert Schooley, Richard Pittman, Lasse Dolboe, John Akraman, Peter Rambo, Jr., Henry Hastings, and William Oxley; two more of the Deputy-Governor's Council being on this jury. At the next meeting of Upland Court, in November, Markham was present, and he attended all the subsequent sessions up to the time of Penn's arrival.
A petition to Markham, dated from "Pesienk (Passyunk), in Pennsylvania, 8th October, 1681," would tend to show that the Indians of that day could not see the merits of "Local Option." It is signed by Nanne Seka, Keka Kappan, Jong Goras, and Espon Ape, and shows that
"Whereas, the selling of strong liquors (to Indians) was prohibited in Pennsylvania, and not at New Castle; we find it a greater ill-convenience than before, our Indians going down to New Castle, and there buying rum and making them more debauched than before (in spite of the prohibition). Therefore we, whose names are hereunder written, do desire that the prohibition may be taken off, and rum and strong liquors may be sold (in the foresaid province) as formerly, until it is prohibited in New Castle, and in that government of Delaware."
This petition appears to have been renewed after Penn's arrival, for we find in the minutes of the Provincial Council, under date of 10th of Third Month (May 20, 1683), that "The Gov'r (Penn) Informs the Council that he had Called the Indians together, and proposed to Let them have rum if they would be contented to be punished as ye English were; which they agreed to, provided that ye Law of not Selling them Rum be abolished." The law was in fact declared to be a dead letter, but in 1684 Penn besought the Council to legislate anew on the subject so at least as to arrest indiscriminate sales of spirits to the savages. This subject of selling rum to the Indians is continually coming up in the Colonial Records.
Penn's ship, the "Welcome," sailed from "the Downe's" (the roadstead off Deal and Ramsgate, where the Goodwin Sands furnish a natural break-water) on or about Sept. 1, 1682. Claypoole writes on September 3d that "we hope the Welcome, with William Penn, is gotten clear." The ship made a tolerably brisk voyage, reaching the capes of the Delaware on October 24th, and New Castle on the 27th, being thus fifty-three days from shore to shore. The voyage, however, was a sad one, almost to the point of disaster. The smallpox had been taken aboard at Deal, and so severe were its ravages that of the one hundred passengers the ship carried, thirty, or nearly one-third, died during the passage. The terrible nature of this pestilence may be gathered from one striking fact, and that is this: antiquarians, searching for the names of these first adventurers who come over with Penn, a list of names more worthy to be put on record than the rolls of Battell Abbey, which preserves the names of the subjugators of England, who came over with William the Conqueror, have been able to find the most of them attached as witnesses or otherwise to the wills of the well-to-do burghers and sturdy yeomen who embarked with Penn on the "Welcome" and died during the voyage. The list of passengers, derived chiefly from Mr. Edward Armstrong's address before the Pennsylvania Historical Society at Chester in 1851 (his authorities being there given in full), begins with
JOHN BARBER and Elizabeth, his wife. He was a "first purchaser," and made his will on board the "Welcome."
WILLIAM BRADFORD, first printer of Philadelphia and earliest government printer of New York.*
WILLIAM BUCKMAN and Mary, his wife, with Sarah and Mary, their children, of Billinghurst, Sussex.
JOHN CARVER and Mary, his wife, of Hertfordshire, a first purchaser.**
BENJAMIN CHAMBERS, of Rochester, Kent. Afterwards sheriff (in 1683) and otherwise prominent in public affairs.
THOMAS CHROASDALE (Croasdale) and Agnes, his wife, with six children, of Yorkshire.
ELLEN COWGILL and family.
JOHN FISHER, Margaret, his wife, and son John.
THOMAS FITZWALTER and sons, Thomas and George, of Hamworth, Middlesex. (He lost his wife, Mary, and Josiah and Mary, his children, on the voyage.) Member of Assembly from Bucks in 1683, active citizen, and eminent Friend.
ROBERT GREENAWAY, master of the "Welcome."
CUTHBERT HAYHURST, his wife and family, of Easington, Bolland, Yorkshire, a first purchaser.
THOMAS HERIOTT, of Hurst-Pier-Point, Sussex. First purchaser.
RICHARD INGELO. Clerk to Provincial Council in 1685.
ISAAC INGRAM, of Gatton, Surrey.
GILES KNIGHT, Mary, his wife, and son Joseph, of Gloucestershire.
DAVID OGDEN, "Probably from London."
EVAN OLIVER, with Jean, his wife, and children, David, Elizabeth, John, Hannah, Mary, Evan, and Seaborn, of Radnor, Wales. (The last, a daughter, born at sea, within sight of the Delaware Capes, Oct. 24, 1682.)
----- PEARSON, emigrant from Chester, Penn's friend, who renamed Upland after his native place. His first name probably Robert.
JOHN ROWLAND and Priscilla, his wife, of Billinghurst, Sussex. First purchaser.
THOMAS ROWLAND, Billinghurst, Sussex. First purchaser.
JOHN SONGHURST, of Chillington, Sussex. First purchaser. (Some say from Conyhurst, or Hitchingfield, Sussex.) Devoted to Penn. Member of first and subsequent Assemblies. A writer and preacher of distinction among the Friends.
JOHN STACKHOUSE and Margery, his wife, of Yorkshire.
RICHARD TOWNSHEND, wife Anna, son James (born on "Welcome" in Delaware River), of London, First purchaser. A leading Friend and eminent minister. Miller at Upland and on Schuylkill.
WILLIAM WADE, of Hankton parish, Sussex.
THOMAS WALMESLEY, Elizabeth, his wife, and six children, of Yorkshire.
NICHOLAS WALN, of Yorkshire. First purchaser. Member from Bucks of first Assembly. Prominent in early history of province.
THOMAS WRIGHTSWORTH and wife, of Yorkshire.
THOMAS WYNNE, chirurgeon, of Caerwys, Flintshire, North Wales. Speaker of first two Assemblies. Magistrate for Sussex County. "A person of note and character." (Chestnut Street, in Philadelphia, was originally named after him.)
DENNIS ROCHFORD and Mary, his wife, John Heriott's daughter. From Ernstorfey, Wexford, Ireland. Also their two daughters, who died at sea. Rochford was a member of Assembly in 1683.
JOHN DUTTON and wife,
PHILIP THEODORE LEHNMAN (afterward Lehman), Penn's private secretary.
HANNAH TOWNSHEND, daughter of Richard.
Dr. George Smith, in the "History of Delaware Co., Pa.," specifies the following as having probably come about the time of William Penn, some before and others immediately afterwards, and before the end of 1682:
RICHARD BARNARD, of Sheffield, settled in Middletown.
JOHN BEALES, or Bales, who married Mary, daughter of William Clayton, Sr., in 1682.
JOHN BLUNSTON, of Derbyshire, his wife Sarah, and two children. A preacher of the Society, member of the Assembly and of Council, and speaker of the former body.
MICHAEL BLUNSTON, Little Hallam, Derbyshire.
THOMAS BRASSEY (or Bracy), of Wilaston, Cheshire. Representative of the Society of Free Traders, member of First Assembly.
SAMUEL BRADSHAW, of Oxton, Nottinghamshire.
EDWARD CARTER, of Brampton, Oxfordshire, member of the first English jury impaneled at Chester.
ROBERT CARTER, son of the foregoing.
JOHN CHURCHMAN, of Waldron, Essex.
WILLIAM COBB, who gave his name to Cobb's Creek. He took the old Swede's mill on the Karakung.
THOMAS COBURN, his wife Elizabeth, and their sons, William and Joseph, from Cashel, Ireland.
RICHARD CR SBY, of London.
ELIZABETH FEARNE, widow, with son Joshua and daughters Elizabeth, Sarah, and Rebecca, of Derbyshire.
RICHARD FEW, of Levington, Wiltshire.
HENRY GIBBONS, with wife Helen and family, of Parvidge, Derbyshire.
JOHN GOODSON, chirurgeon, of Society of Free Traders. Came in the ship "John and Sarah" or "Bristol Factor."
JOHN HASTINGS and Elizabeth, his wife.
JOSHUA HASTINGS and Elizabeth, his wife. He was on the first grand jury.
THOMAS HOOD, of Breason, Derbyshire.
VALENTINE HOLLINGSWORTH, of Cheshire. Ancestor of the
Hollingsworth family of Philadelphia (and Maryland).
WILLIAM HOWELL and Margaret, his wife, of Castlebight, Pembrokeshire, Wales.
ELIZABETH HUMPHREY, with son Benjamin, and daughters Anne and Gobitha, of Llanegrin, Merioneth, Wales.
DANIEL HUMPHREY, of same place as foregoing.
DAVID JAMES, his wife Margaret and daughter Mary, of Llangeley and Glascum, Radnorshire, Wales.
JAMES KENERLEY, of Cheshire.
HENRY LEWIS, his wife Margaret and their family, of Narbeth, Pembrokeshire.
MORDECAI MADDOCK, of Loem Hill, Cheshire.
THOMAS MINSHALL and wife Margaret, of Stoke, Cheshire.
THOMAS POWELL, of Rudheith, Cheshire.
CALEB PUSEY and wife Ann, and daughter Ann.
SAMUEL SELLERS, of Belper, Derbyshire.
JOHN SHARPLESS, Jane, his wife, and children, Phebe, John, Thomas, James, Caleb, Jane, and Joseph, of Huddeston, Cheshire.
JOHN SIMCOCK, of Society of Free Traders, from Ridley, Cheshire. A leading man in the province.
JOHN SIMCOCK, Jr., son of the foregoing. JACOB SIMCOCK, ditto.
CHRISTOPHER TAYLOR, of Skipton, Yorkshire.
PETER TAYLOR and WILLIAM TAYLOR, of Suttin, Cheshire.
THOMAS VERNON, of Stouthorne, Cheshire.
ROBERT VERNON, of Stoaks, Cheshire.
RANDALL VERNON, of Sandway, Cheshire.
RALPH WITHERS, of Bishop's Canning, Wiltshire.
GEORGE WOOD, his wife Hannah, his son George, and other children, of Bonsall, Derbyshire.
RICHARD WORRELL (or Worall), of Oare, Berkshire.
JOHN WORRELL, probably brother of foregoing.
THOMAS WORTH, of Oxton, Nottinghamshire.
The passengers by the "John and Sarah" and "Bristol Factor," so far as known, include William Crispin, who died on the way out, John Bezar and family, William Haige and family, Nathaniel Allen and family, John Otter, Edmund Lovett, Joseph Kirkbridge, and Gabriel Thomas.
During the trial and affliction which the passengers and crew of the "Welcome" were subjected to on their voyage to the Delaware, when the natural instincts of man are turned to terror and selfish seclusion, Penn showed himself at his best. His whole time, and that of his friends, was given to the support of the sick, the consolation of the dying, the burial of the dead. Richard Townshend, a fellow-passenger, said, "his good conversation was very advantageous to all the company. His singular care was manifested in contributing to the necessities of many who were sick with the smallpox. . . . We had many good meetings on board." In these pious services Penn had the cordial help of Isaac Pearson, to whom, in return, he gratefully gave the privilege of rebaptizing the town on the Delaware at which some of the survivors landed, and thus the significant and appropriate name of Upland, applied by the Swedes to their second colony, was lost in the euphonious but meaningless and inappropriate cognomen of Chester.
The record of Penn's arrival at New Castle is as follows: "October 28. On the 27th day of October, arrived before the town of New Castle, in Delaware, from England, WILLIAM PENN, Esq., proprietary of Pennsylvania, who produced two certain deeds of feoffment from the illustrious prince, James, Duke of York, Albany, etc., for this town of New Castle, and twelve miles about it, and also for the two lower counties the Whorekill's and St. Jones's, which said deeds bear date the 24th August, 1682; and pursuant to the true intent, purpose, and meaning of his royal highness in the same deeds, he, the said William Penn, received possession of the town of New Castle, the 28th of October, 1682." This delivery was made, as the records show, by John Moll, Esq., and Ephraim Herman,*** gentlemen, attorneys, constituted by his royal highness, of the town of Delaware otherwise called New Castle; the witnesses to the formal ceremony in which the key of the fort was delivered to Penn by one of the commissioners, "in order that he might lock upon himself alone the door," and which was accompanied with presents of "turf and twig, and water and soyle of the river Delaware," were Thomas Holme, William Markham, Arnoldus de la Grange, George Forman, James Graham, Samuel Land, Richard Tugels, Joseph Curles, and John Smith.(4*) Penn at once commissioned magistrates (5*) for the newly-annexed counties, and made Markham his attorney to receive possession of the lower counties from Moll and Herman. This was done on November 7, 1682.
He also recommended a court to meet at New Castle on November 2d. On that day Penn was present with the justices, and Markham, Holme, Haige, Symcock, and Brassey, of the Provincial Council.(6*) The lower counties gave in their allegiance to Markham for Penn on November 7th. In the interval between his arrival and the meeting of court, October 29th, Penn went to Upland to pay a short visit. It was between November 2d and the 8th that Penn arrived in Philadelphia.
Penn was not idle while his people were getting ready for the winter. He sent off two messengers to Lord Baltimore "to ask of his health, offer kind neighborhood, and agree upon a time the better to establish it." He issued a writ on November 18th, to Peter Baucomb, the sheriff of Jones County, to summon all freeholders on the 20th "and elect out of themselves, seven persons of most note for wisdom, sobriety, and integrity to serve as their deputies and representatives in General Assembly, to be held at Upland, in Pennsylvania, December 6th, next, and then and there to consult with him for the common good of the inhabitants of that province, and adjacent counties of New Castle, St. Jones and Whorekill, alias Deal, under his charge and jurisdiction." On the same day John Vines was appointed sheriff of Whorekill and Penn directed him to hold an election for seven representatives. Similar notices were issued to the other counties. Penn's province was then divided into three counties, Philadelphia, Bucks, and Chester, and the territories into New Castle, Jones, and Whorekills, alias Deal. The names of the two last were, towards the close of the year (December 25th), again changed, Deal to Sussex, and Jones to Kent, and Penn directed that Cape Henlopen be called Cape James.
At a meeting of the Deputy-Governor and justices in New Castle, on a commission directed to them by the proprietary, "touching the keeping a weekly constant market," it was resolved, "that Saturday, the 18th instant, shall be the first market-day, to be continued on every future Saturday, for this town, when all persons are desired to repair with their commodities to the fort in the market-place, at present appointed for the same, and that the sheriff shall proclaim the same to begin at 10 o'clock in the morning, and continue till 4 o'clock P.M."
After Penn had laid off his province, he took a horse and rode to New York, to see the Governor there, and look into the affairs of his friend, the Duke of York's province. When he returned he met the Assembly, on December 4th, at Upland. Nicholas More was president. The first day was devoted to organization and the selection of committees; on the second day the credentials of members and contested election cases were disposed of, and the House proceeded to adopt a series of rules and regulations for its government. These have no special interest, except that they show the Lower House had set out to become a deliberative body, and was prepared to originate bills as well as vote upon them. The three lower counties sent in a petition signed by seven persons from New Deal, six from St. Jones, and five from New Castle, asking for annexation and union, and the Swedes, Finns, and Dutch another, asking that they might be made as free as the other members of the province, and have their lands entailed upon them and their heirs forever. The same day a bill for annexation and naturalization came down from the Governor and was passed, and on the next day the Legislature passed Penn's "Great Law," so called, and adjourned or was prorogued by the Governor for twenty-one days. It never met again.
The act of union "of the counties of New Castle, Jones's, and Whorekill, alias Deal," and naturalization "of all foreigners in the province and counties aforesaid," after reciting Penn's different titles to Pennsylvania and the three lower counties or Delaware Hundreds, and the reasons there were in favor of a closer union and one government for the whole, enacts that the counties mentioned "are hereby annexed to the province of Pennsylvania, as of the proper territory thereof, and the people therein shall be governed by the same laws and enjoy the same privileges in all respects as the inhabitants of Pennsylvania do or shall enjoy." To further the purpose of this act of union, it is also enacted that "all persons who are strangers and foreigners that do now inhabit this province and counties aforesaid," and who promise allegiance to the King of England, and obedience to the proprietary and his government, "shall be held and reputed freemen of the province and counties aforesaid, in as ample and full manner as any person residing therein;" other foreigners in the future, upon making application and paying twenty shillings sterling, to be naturalized in like manner. This act, says Penn, in a letter written shortly afterwards, "much pleased the people. . . . The Swedes, for themselves, deputed Lacy Cock to acquaint him that they would love, serve, and obey him with all they had, declaring it was the best day they ever saw." An "act of settlement" appears to have been passed at the same time, in which, owing to "the fewness of the people," the number of representatives was reduced to three in the Council and nine in the Assembly from each county, the meetings of the Legislature to be annually only, unless an emergency should occur in the opinion of Governor and Council.
Penn's "Great Law," passed as above recited, contained sixty-nine sections.(7*) It represents the final shape in which the proprietary's "frame of government" and code of "laws agreed upon in England" conjointly were laid before the Legislature. The variations from the original forms were numerous, some of them important. The language of the revised code is much improved over the first forms, both in dignity and sustained force. The preamble and first section are always quoted with admiration, and they should have their place here:
"THE GREAT LAW; OR, THE BODY OF LAWS OF THE PROVINCE OF PENNSYLVANIA AND TERRITORIES THEREUNTO BELONGING, PASSED AT AN ASSEMBLY AT CHESTER, ALIAS UPLAND, THE 7TH DAY OF THE 10TH MONTH, DECEMBER, 1682.
"Whereas, the glory of Almighty God and the good of mankind is the reason and end of government, and therefore government, in itself, is a venerable ordinance of God; and forasmuch as it is principally desired and intended by the proprietary and Governor, and the freemen of the Province of Pennsylvania and territories thereunto belonging, to make and establish such laws as shall best preserve true Christian and civil liberty, in opposition to all unchristian, licentious, and unjust practices, whereby God may have his due, Caesar his due, and the people their due from tyranny and oppression of the one side and insolency and licentiousness of the other, so that the best and firmest foundation may be laid for the present and future happiness of both the governor and the people of this province and territories aforesaid, and their posterity. Be it therefore enacted by William Penn, proprietary and governor, by and with the advice and consent of the deputies of the freemen of this province and counties aforesaid in assembly met, and by the authority of the same, that these following chapters and paragraphs shall be the laws of Pennsylvania and the territories thereof:
"I. Almighty God being only Lord of conscience, father of lights and spirits, and the author as well as object of all divine knowledge, faith, and worship, who only can enlighten the mind and persuade and convince the understanding of people in due reverence to his sovereignty over the souls of mankind; it is enacted by the authority aforesaid that no person now or at any time hereafter living in this province, who shall confess and acknowledge one Almighty God to be the creator, upholder, and ruler of the world, and that professeth him or herself obliged in conscience to live peaceably and justly under the civil government, shall in anywise be molested or prejudiced for his or her conscientious persuasion or practice, nor shall he or she at any time be compelled to frequent or maintain any religious worship, place, or ministry whatever contrary to his or her mind, but shall freely and fully enjoy his or her Christian liberty in that respect without any interruption or reflection; and if any person shall abuse or deride any other for his or her different persuasion and practice in matter of religion such shall be looked upon as a disturber of the peace, and be punished accordingly. But to the end that looseness, irreligion, and atheism may not creep in under pretence of conscience in this province, be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that according to the good example of the primitive Christians, and for the ease of the creation every first day of the week, called the Lord's Day, people shall abstain from their common toil and labor that, whether masters, parents, children, or servants, they may the better dispose themselves to read the scriptures of truth at home, or to frequent such meetings of religious worship abroad as may best suit their respective persuasions."
The second article of the code requires that all officers and persons "commissionated" and in the service of the Commonwealth, and members and deputies in Assembly, and "all that have the right to elect such deputies shall be such as profess and declare they believe in Jesus Christ to be the Son of God and Saviour of the world," etc. This was not perhaps illiberal for Penn's day, but under it not only atheists and infidels, but Arians and Socinians, were denied the right of suffrage. Swearing "by the name of God or Christ or Jesus" was punishable, upon legal conviction, by a fine of five shillings, or five days' hard labor in the House of Correction on bread and water diet. Every other sort of swearing was punishable also with fine or imprisonment, and blasphemy and cursing incurred similar penalties. Obscene words one shilling fine or two hours in the stocks.
Murder was made punishable with death and confiscation of property, to be divided between the sufferer's and the criminal's next of kin. The punishment for manslaughter was to be graduated according to the nature of the offense. For adultery the penalty was public whipping and a year's imprisonment at hard labor; second offense was imprisonment for life, an action for divorce also lying at the option of the aggrieved husband or wife; incest, forfeiture of half one's estate and a year's imprisonment; second offense, the life term; sodomy, whipping, forfeiture of one-third of estate, and six months in prison; life term for second offense; rape, forfeiture one-third to injured party or next friend, whipping, year's imprisonment, and life term for second offense; fornication, three months' labor in House of Correction, and if parties are single, to marry one another after serving their term; if the man be married he forfeits one-third his estate in addition to lying in prison; polygamy, hard labor for life in House of Correction.
"XIV. Drunkenness on legal conviction, fine of five shillings, or five days in work-house on bread and water; second and each subsequent offense, double penalty. And be it exacted further, by the authority aforesaid, that they who do suffer such excess of drinking at their houses shall be liable to the same punishment with the drunkard. Drinking health, as conducive to hard drinking, is subject to fine of five shillings. The penalty for selling rum to Indians is a fine of five pounds. Arson is punished with amercement of double the value destroyed, corporal punishment at discretion of the bench, and a year's imprisonment. House-breaking and larceny demand fourfold satisfaction and three months in work-house; if offender be not able to make restitution, then seven years' imprisonment. All thieves required to make fourfold satisfaction; forcible entry to be treated as a breach of the peace, and satisfaction to be made for it. Rioting is an offense which can be committed by three person, and is punished according to common law and the bench's discretion. Violence to parents, by imprisonment in work-house at parent's pleasure; to magistrates, fine at discretion of court and a month in work-house; assaults by servants on masters, penalty at discretion of the court, so also with assault and battery.
"XXVII. Challenges to duels and acceptance of challenge demand a penalty of five pounds fine and three months in work-house. Rude and riotous sports, prizes, stage-plays, masks, revels, bull-baits, cock fighting, with such like, are treated as breaches of the peace; penalty, ten days in work-house, or fine of twenty shillings. Gambling, etc., fine of five shillings, or five days in the work-house. Spoken or written sedition incurred a fine of not less than twenty shillings; slighting language of or towards the magistracy, penalty, not less than twenty shillings, five or ten days in the work-house.
"XXXII. Slanderers, scandal-mongers, and spreaders of false news are to be treated as peace-breakers; persons clamorous, scolding, or railing with their tongue, when convicted "on full proof," are to go to the House of Correction for three days.
"XXXIV. The statute for the encouragement of marriage is as it was quoted above in the laws adopted in England, but (XXXV.) no person, be it either widower or widow, shall contract marriage, much less marry, under one year after the decease of his wife or her husband.
"XXXVI. If any person shall fall into decay and poverty, and be unable to maintain themselves and children with their honest endeavor, or who shall die and leave poor orphans, upon complaint to the next justice of the peace of the said county, the said justice finding the complaint to be true, shall make provision for them in such way as they shall see convenient till the next county court, and then care shall be taken for their comfortable subsistence.
"XXXVII., etc. To prevent exaction in public-houses strong beer and ale of barley-malt shall be sold for not above two pennies per Winchester quart; molasses beer one penny; a bushel must contain eight gallons, Winchester measure, all weights to be avoirdupois of sixteen ounces to the pound; all ordinaries must be licensed by the Governor, and, to insure reasonable accommodation, travelers must not be charged more than sixpence per head for each meal, including meats and
small-beer; footmen to pay not over two pence per night for beds, horsemen nothing, but the charge for a horse's hay to be sixpence per night.
"XL. The days of the week and the months of the year shall be called as in Scripture, and not by heathen names (as are vulgarly used), as the first, second, and third days of the week, and first, second, and third months of the year, etc., beginning with the day called Sunday, and the month called March.
"Sections XLI. to LXIX. and the end of this code are substantially repeated from the code of laws adopted in England, which have already been analyzed on a preceding page. They relate to the administration of justice, the courts, testamentary law, registration, and the purity of elections. Only a few additions and changes have been made, and these simply for the sake of more perspicuity and clearer interpretation."
After the meeting of the Assembly, Penn set out on December 11th to go to visit Lord Baltitimore, with whom he had an appointment for the 19th. The meeting took place at West River, where Penn was courteously and hospitably entertained. Nothing was accomplished, however, in the way of settling the boundary dispute, beyond a general discussion of the subject. Baltimore contended for what his charter gave him; Penn holding firm upon his purchase, the King's letter, and the phrase of the Calvert charter confining its operations to lands hitherto unoccupied, a position in which Penn and the Virginian Claiborne took common ground. The issue of fact as to whether the Delaware Hundreds were settled or unsettled in 1634, could not be determined then and there, even if the contending parties should agree to rest their case upon that point, as neither would do. The proprietaries finally parted, agreeing to meet again in March, and each went home to write out his own views and his own account of the interview to the Lords of the Committee of Plantations. On his way to Chester, Penn stopped to visit the flourishing settlement of Friends in Anne Arundel and Talbot Counties, Maryland, reaching his destination on the 29th.
The year 1683 was a very busy one for William Penn. A great number of colonists arrived, building was very actively going on, division of land among purchasers was a source of much care and perplexity, the lines and bounds and streets of the new city required to be readjusted, the Council and Assembly had to be newly elected and organized, with much important legislative business before them, and there were besides, the boundary question and interviews with Lord Baltimore, Indian land treaties with their tedious preliminary councils and pow-wows, and in addition to all this an extensive and exacting correspondence. Penn, however, was equal to it all, and maintained his health, spirits, and energy remarkably well. He even found time to make an extensive tour through his territories, visited the Indian tribes in friendship with them, curiously studied their manners and customs, and even picked up a smattering of their tongue. Penn was more and more pleased with his province the more he saw of it, and was elated with the great work he had set in motion, even while he could not conceal from himself that his new province was going to prove difficult for him to govern, and that his liberal expenditures in behalf of its settlement would eventually plunge him deep in pecuniary embarrassments.
The Governor appointed new sheriffs for the several counties, and ordered them to issue writs for a new election of members of the Provincial Council and General Assembly. The "act of settlement," or frame of government provisionally adopted by the first Legislature in its brief session at Upland, or Chester, had arranged for the election of a Council of twelve persons from each county, and a General Assembly to consist of not more than two hundred freemen. The people of the counties, however, thought that this would be too heavy a drain upon a scattered and as yet scanty population, especially at times when labor seemed to be of more value than law-making, and accordingly they simply went outside the charter and elected twelve members from each county, three of whom were designated to serve in the Provincial Council, the rest to act as members of the General Assembly.
The Legislature met for the first time in Philadelphia, the Council and Governor coming together on the 10th of March, 1683, the General Assembly two days later. The members of the Council were: William Markham, Thomas Holme, Lasse Cock, Christopher Taylor, James Harrison, William Biles, John Simcock, William Clayton, Ralph Withers, William Haige, John Moll, Edmund Cantwell, Francis Whitwell, John Richardson, John Hilliard, William Clark, Edward Southrin, and John Roads. The members of the Assembly, from the three lower counties on the Delaware, were: New Castle. John Cann, John Darby, Valentine Hollingsworth, Gasparus Herman, John Dehraef, James Williams, William Guest, Peter Alrichs, Hendrick Williams. Kent. John Briggs, Simon Irons, Thomas Hassold, John Curtis, Robert Bedwell, William Windsmore, John Brinkloe, Daniel Brown, Benoni Bishop. Sussex. Luke Watson, Alexander Draper, William Fletcher, Henry Bowman, Alexander Moleston, John Hill, Robert Bracy, John Kipshaven, Cornelius Verhoof.
At the first meeting of the Council in Philadelphia, March 10, 1683, Penn took the chair and sixteen of the eighteen councilors were present. The sheriffs of the different counties (Edmund Cantwell for New Castle, Peter Baucomb for Kent, and John Vines for Sussex) were called in and made their returns respecting the election. The rules were of the simplest: the Governor ordered those speaking to do so standing, one at a time, and facing the chair, and the members agreed upon a viva voce vote in all except personal matters. When these arose the vote was to be by ballot. The question of the power of electors to change the number of representatives without modifying the charter at once arose, when Penn answered that they might "amend, alter, or add for the Publick good, and that he was ready to settle such Foundations as might be for their happiness and the good of their Posterities, according to ye powers vested in him." Then the Assembly chose a Speaker, and there was an adjournment of Council till the 12th. At the session of Council of that day nothing seems to have been done beyond compelling Dr. Nicholas More, president of the Society of Free Traders, to appear and apologize for having abused Governor, Council, and General Assembly "in company in a publick house,. . . as that they have this day broken the charter, and therefore all that you do will come to nothing & that hundreds in England will curse you for what you have done & their children after them, and that you may hereafter be impeacht for Treason for what you do." Dr. More's apologies were ample, as became such a determined conservative. The next day's session was occupied with improvement of the rules and suggestions as to amending the charter. It was obvious that the freemen of the province were determined this should be done, in spite of Dr. More's suggestion about impeachment. On the 15th, John Richardson was fined for being "disordered in Drink," and reproved. The question of giving Governor and Council authority to prepare all bills was finally settled affirmatively, but apparently only after considerable debate. On the 16th, Dr. More, of the Society of Free Traders, wrote to ask such an interpretation of the law against fornication as applicable to servants as would be "more consistent wth the Mr. & Mrs. Interest." This was the first utterance of a corporation in Pennsylvania, and it was not on the side of humanity or morality, but of the "master and mistress' interests," the society did not care how severely servants were punished for their vices, so that the punishment was not such as to deprive the corporation of their services.
Among the earliest bills prepared for submitting to the General Assembly were the following: A bill for planting flax and hemp, for building a twenty-four by sixteen feet House of Correction in each county, to hinder the selling of servants into other provinces and to prevent runaways, a bill about passes, about burning woods and marshes, to have cattle marked and erect bounds, about fencing, showing that servants and stock gave the settlers more concern than anything else. The country was so large and free that it was difficult to retain people in any sort of bondage, and, where nineteen-twentieths of the land was uninclosed and free to all sorts of stock, it was necessary to fence in improved and cultivated tracts to save the crops from destruction. These bills and other matters were given in charge of the various committees into which the Council now began to divide itself. On the 19th the Speaker and a committee of the Assembly reported the bill of settlement (charter or Constitution), with "divers amendments," which were yielded to by the Governor and Council, and other amendments suggested. The Duke of York's laws and the fees charged in New York and "Delaware" were also considered in this connection; finally, on the 20th, there was a conference between the Governor and the two Houses, "and then the question being asked by the Govr whether they would have the old charter or a new one, they unanimously desired there might be a new one, with the amendmts putt into a Law, wh is past." Other bills introduced at this time looked to regulating county courts, protested bills of exchange, possessions, "sailor's wracks," acts of oblivion, "Scoulds," seizure of goods, limits of courts in criminal cases, marriage by magistrates, executors and administrators, limiting the credit public-houses may give to twenty shillings, protecting landmarks, earmarks, and cattle-brands. Also bills requiring hogs to be ringed, coroners to be appointed in each county, regulating wages of servants without indenture, bail-bonds, and summoning grand juries. There were offered likewise a law of weights, and a bill fixing the punishment for manslaughter, and it was ordered that the seal of Philadelphia County be the anchor, of Bucks County a tree and vine, of Chester a plow, of New Castle a castle, of Kent three ears of Indian corn, and of Sussex a sheaf of wheat. The pay of Councilors was fixed at three shillings, and Assembly men two shillings sixpence per diem, the expenses of government to be met by a landtax. On April 2, 1683, "the Great Charter of this province was this night read, signed, sealed and delivered by ye Govr to ye inhabitants, and received by ye hands of James Harrison and ye Speaker, who were ordered to return ye old one wth ye hearty thanks of ye whole house, which accordingly they did." Then on the 3d, after passing some minor laws, the chief of which was to prohibit the importation of felons, the Assembly adjourned "till such time as the Governor and Provincial Council shall have occasion for them."
The new charter, Constitution, bill of settlement, or frame of government was modeled upon the plan originally proposed by Penn. It retained in the hands of Governor and Council the authority to originate bills, but in other respects it deviated materially from the conditions of the old charter. The Council was to consist of three, and the General Assembly of six members from each county. The members of Council served one, two, and three years respectively. A provision was introduced looking to increase of representation in proportion to the growth of population. The whole legislative body was to be called the General Assembly, and all bills becoming acts were to be called acts of such Assembly, and the Lower House was not to adjourn until it had acted upon the business before it. It was, moreover, distinctly implied in the language of the charter that some of the rights and prerogatives enjoyed by Penn under it were to cease with his life; they were concessions to his character and his labors for the province, and not a final surrender of freemen's rights. In return Penn confirmed all in all their liberties, and pledged himself to insure to all the inhabitants of the province the quiet possession and peaceable enjoyment of their lands and estates.
The Governor and Council were in what may be called continuous session, since the charter required that the Governor or his deputy shall always preside in the Provincial Council, "and that he shall at no time therein perform any act of State whatsoever that shall or may relate unto the justice, trade, treasury, or safety of the province and territories aforesaid, but by and with the advice and consent of the Provincial Council thereof." The Assembly, however, did not meet again until October 24th, when, after a two days' session, devoted to business legislation and providing that country produce could be taken in lieu of currency, it adjourned. The business before the Council during 1683 was mainly of a routine character. The people and officials were too busily occupied in out-door work building, planting, surveying, laying off manors and townships and treating with Indians' to have time to spare for records and debates. Nicholas More, of the Society of Free Traders, was made president of Council.
At the Council held in Philadelphia on the 29th of January, 1683, John Moll represented New Castle County in the Council, Francis Whitwell, Kent, and William Clarke, Sussex. The committee of the Assembly were James Williams, of New Castle County; Benony Bishop, Kent; and Luke Watson, Sussex. The next Assembly met at Lewes on the 2d of March, but only routine business was transacted. Early in the year 1684 a number of the inhabitants of Kent County refused to pay their taxes to Penn, and expressed disloyal sentiments against his government, which gave him much concern. The leaders of the revolt appear to be John Richardson, Thomas Heather and Thomas Wilson, who made complaint against the government in the General Assembly. Francis Whitwell and John Hilliard, who were members of the Council with John Richardson, were also implicated in the rebellion.
To conciliate the disaffected in the three lower counties of the Delaware, the General Assembly met at New Castle on the 10th of March, 1684, at which William Penn was present. The minutes of this session of the Assembly contain a singular record as illustrative of the character and methods of Penn, and what he meant by creating the office of peacemaker or arbitrator, who might stand between the people and the courts and save them the expenses and heart-burnings of litigation. "Andrew Johnson, Pl., Hance (Hans) Petersen, Deft. There being a Difference depending between them, the Govr & Councill advised them to shake hands, and to forgive One another; and Ordered that they should Enter in bonds for fifty pounds apiece for their good abearance; wch accordingly they did. It was also Ordered that the Records of Court concerning that Business should be burnt." This simple, naked record of how the differences between Jan Jansen and Hans Petersen were settled is one of the most impressive examples of practical ethics applied to jurisprudence that was ever known.
William Penn had been long parted from his family, and his affairs in England were not in a good condition. He had done much for his province, which, at this time, had a population of seven thousand. He now thought it good for him to return for a season to England, especially as there was the place in which he might more safely hope to effect a settlement of the vexatious boundary disputes with Lord Baltimore, whose agents had invaded the lower counties, built a fort within five miles of New Castle, and were collecting taxes and rents and dispossessing tenants in that section. Calvert himself had gone to England in March, and Penn wrote to the Duke of York that he meant to follow him as fast as he could. Accordingly, he prepared to leave the province, reorganizing the church discipline of his co-religionaries, and looking after the fiscal system of his civil government in a practical and able way. The ketch "Endeavor," just arrived from England with letters and dispatches, was got ready to carry the Governor back again. He commissioned the Provincial Council to act in his stead while he was away, intrusting the great seal to Thomas Lloyd, the president. Nicholas More, William Welch, William Wood, Robert Turner, and John Eckly were made provincial judges for two years; Markham was secretary of Council, and James Harrison was steward of the house and manor of Pennsbury. He embarked at and sailed from Philadelphia August 12, 1684, sending from on board the vessel ere she sailed a final letter of parting to Lloyd, Claypoole, Simcock, Christopher Taylor, and James Harrison, in which he expresses the deepest affection for those faithful friends, and sends them his prayers and blessings. They had many responsibilities upon their shoulders, and he hoped they would do their duty. The letter concluded with a fervent prayer for Philadelphia, "the virgin settlement of the province, named before thou wert born." Penn arrived in England on the 3d of October, and did not again see his virgin city and his beloved province until 1699.
The proceedings of Council and Assembly between 1684 and 1699, while they might fill several pages in a volume of annals, may be summed up in a few paragraphs in a history such as this.(8*) The transactions were, as a rule, not very important, and the major part of the record, outside of the regular routine of appointments, etc., is taken up with the quarrels of public officers among themselves and the complaints of the people against Penn and the government generally. A French ship with irregular papers was seized, condemned, and sold by order of Council under the English navigation laws. There must have been a great many vessels on the coast and in the bays at this time which could not give a good account of themselves, and complaints of piracy are loud and frequent, the colonial governments being sometimes accused of undue leniency in their dealings with the freebooters. Governor Fletcher, of New York, who was also Governor of Pennsylvania during the suspension of Penn's authority in May, 1693, was on friendly terms with Kidd and others, and Nicholls, one of his Council, was commonly charged with being agent of the sea-rovers. Governor Markham's alleged son-in-law, James Brown, was denied his seat in the Assembly and put in prison for sailing in a pirate's vessel. The people of Lewes openly dealt with Kidd, exchanging their provisions for his fine goods. Teach, called Blackbeard, was often about the Delaware, and it was charged that he and the Governor of North Carolina and other officials of that State were altogether too intimate.
Penn's noticeable tact and skill as a peacemaker and composer of personal difficulties were sadly missed after his departure for England. The Assembly and Council got into a serious squabble in consequence of a difference about the prerogatives and dignity of the two bodies. Chief Justice Nicholas More, though an able and probably upright man, was dictatorial and arbitrary, as well as quarrelsome. He was not a Quaker, but he used very plain language sometimes, and was free-spoken. Him the Assembly formally impeached before Council on June 15, 1685, upon the ground of various malpractices and misdemeanors, chiefly technical, or growing out of his blunt manners.
Penn at this time, besides his grave concerns at court, was busy looking after the home interests of his province on one side and its external interests on the other, now shipping wine, beer, seeds, and trees to Pennsylvania, anon publishing in London accounts and descriptions of the province and excerpts of letters received from its happy settlers. The proprietary was never fatigued even by the most minute details in any matter in which he desired to succeed, and his letters show that he anticipated and thought about every thing. His supervision was needed, for Council, Assembly, and Governor seem to have been equally incompetent to do anything besides quarrel and disagree in regard to privilege. In fact, underneath these trivial bickerings a great struggle was going on between the representatives of the freemen of the province and the sponsors for Penn's personal interests and his proprietary prerogative. This contest lasted long, and Penn's friends in the end, without serving his political interests materially, contrived to deal his personal interests a cruel blow, by exciting the people of the province to hostile feelings against him, and provoking them to withhold rents and purchases, and reduce his income in every possible way. Penn himself wrote to Lloyd, in 1686, that the ill fame the province had gained on account of its bickerings had lost it fifteen thousand immigrants, who would have gone thither had its affairs appeared more settled, but as it was they went to North Carolina instead.
In February, 1687, Penn took the executive power away from the Council and intrusted it to a commission of five persons, Thomas Lloyd, Nicholas More, James Claypoole, Robert Turner, and John Eckly, any three to have power to act. He sent over many instructions to his board, among others to compel the Council to their charter attendance or dissolve them without further ado and choose others, "for I will no more endure their most slothful and dishonorable attendance." The commissioners were enjoined to keep up the dignity of their station, in Council and out, and not to permit any disorders either in Council or Assembly, and not to allow any parleys or conferences between the two Houses, but curiously inspect the proceedings of both. They were further in Penn's name to disavow all laws passed since his absence, and to call a new Assembly to repass, modify, and alter the laws. When this commission was received, in February, 1688, both More and Claypoole were dead. Their places were supplied by Arthur Cook and John Simcock, and the new elections ordered gave Samuel Richardson the appointment of member of Council for three years, while Thomas Hooten, Thomas Fitzwalter, Lasse Cock, James Fox, Griffith Owen, and William Southerby were chosen members of Assembly. The contests for privilege between Council and Assembly were at once renewed; the Assembly swore its members to divulge no proceedings, and practically made its sessions secret; the Council asserted its ancient prerogatives; in short, the quarrel was interminable except by what would be practically revolution, for on one side was a written charter and a system of iron-bound laws, on the other the popular determination, growing stronger every day, to secure for the freemen of the province and their representatives a larger share in the major concerns of government and legislation. The commission, in fact, would not work upon trial, and before the year was out Penn sent over a Governor for the province, an old officer under the Commonwealth and Cromwell, and son-in-law of that Gen. Lambert who at one time was Monk's rival, by name John Blackwell.
Governor Blackwell had a troublesome career in office. For a peaceable, non-resistant people, the Pennsylvania settlers had as many domestic difficulties on their hands as ever any happy family had. As soon as Blackwell was inducted he was brought in collision with Thomas Lloyd, who would not give up the great seal of the province, and declined to affix it to any commissions or documents of which he did not approve. As the misunderstanding grew deeper, the old issue of prerogative came up again, and it was declared that Blackwell was not Governor, for the reason that, under the charter, Penn could not create a Governor, but only appoint a Deputy-Governor. An effort was made to expel from the Council a member who had insisted upon this view of the case; it failed, the Governor dissolved the Council, and at the next session the people re-elected John Richardson, the offending member, whom, however, Blackwell refused to permit to take his seat. From this the quarrel went on until we find Lloyd and Blackwell removing and reappointing officers, and the public officers declining to submit their records to the Council and the courts. Lloyd was elected member of Council from Bucks County, and Blackwell refused to let him take his seat, which brought on a violent controversy. The general discussion of privilege and prerogative in connection with these differences led Bradford, the printer, to print for general use an edition of the "Form of Government and the Great Law," so that everybody might see for himself the right and the wrong of the matters in dispute. The expense of the publication, it is said, was borne by Joseph Growdon, a member of Council. It was considered a dangerous and incendiary act, and Bradford was summoned before the Council and closely interrogated, but he would not admit that he had printed the document, though he was the only person in the province who could have done it. There was a Council quarrel over this thing too, some men quoting Penn as favoring publicity for the acts of Assembly, another proclaiming his dread of the press, because the charter, in fact, made him a sort of independent prince. The result was the Council broke up in confusion, and for some time could not get a quorum together. The Assembly, meeting May 10th, was suddenly adjourned for the same reason, the popular party having discovered that by a negative, non-resistance policy of this sort the Governor's plans and purposes were paralyzed. There were no meetings of either Council or Assembly from the latter part of May till the last of August. Then Blackwell sprung upon the Council a great rumor of terrible things in store for the province; the Indians and Papists had leagued together; the Northern Indians were coming down the Susquehanna, and the lower counties were already mustering to resist the invasion of an army of nine thousand men on their way from Maryland to destroy Philadelphia. Blackwell wanted instant authority to levy a force for defense, but the Quakers took things rather more quietly. They did not want an army and they did not believe the rumors. Clarke said if any such scheme of invasion had ever been entertained it was now dead. Peter Alrichs said there was nothing to be scared about. John Simcock did not see "but what we are as safe, keeping peaceable, as those who have made all this strife." Griffith Jones said there was no cause of danger if they kept quiet. In fact, the Council not only objected to a levy, but they laughed at Blackwell's apprehensions. Markham said that all such talk had no effect but to scare the women and children. The Governor found he could do nothing, and adjourned the Council.
Next came news that James II. was dethroned and William of Orange made king of England. The Council was called together, and the honest Quakers, not feeling sure which king they were under, determined neither to celebrate nor wear mourning, but to wait events, the Council amusing themselves in the mean time by keeping up their old feuds. Shrewsbury's letter announcing the new king's intention to make immediate war on the French king was laid before Council Oct. 1, 1689, and was accompanied with the usual warning about defensive measures and the need for commercial vessels to sail in company and under the protection of convoys. William and Mary were at once formally proclaimed in the province, and a fresh discussion arose in regard to the proper defensive measures and the necessity for an armed militia. The Quakers were utterly opposed to any sort of military preparations. If they armed themselves, it was urged, the Indians would at once rise. "As we are," said sensible Simcock, "we are in no danger but from bears and wolves. We are well and in peace and quiet. Let us keep ourselves so. I know naught but a peaceable spirit and that will do well." Griffith Jones, moreover, showed how much the thing would cost and how it would increase taxation. Finally, after long discussions, the Quakers withdrew from active opposition, and the preparations for defense were left to the discretion of the Governor. William Penn himself was now in deep difficulties and partly a fugitive in hiding. He was afraid to act openly any longer as the Governor of the province. Accordingly he made another change, and when Governor Blackwell called the Council together on Jan. 1, 1690, it was to inform them that he had been relieved of his office. He seemed glad to be free.
The Council, acting upon Penn's instructions and commission on January 2, 1690, elected Thomas Lloyd president and de facto Deputy-Governor. The lower Delaware counties were envious of the growth of Philadelphia, Bucks, and Chester. The traditions and manners of the different sections had little similarity. Finally the bad feeling grew so strong as to lead to secession, which is more fully treated in a succeeding chapter. The Delaware counties (or "territories," as they were called) held a separate Council, elected their own judges, and finally compelled Penn, in 1691, much against his will, to divide the government, which he did by continuing Lloyd as Deputy-Governor of the province, and appointing Markham Deputy-Governor of the territories. George Keith also had at this time begun to agitate in behalf of his schism.
The French and Indian hostilities on the frontier, the apathy and non-resistance of the Quakers, and the ambiguous position of Penn, lurking in concealment, with an indictment hanging over his head, were made the pretexts for taking the government of Penn's province away from him. His intimate relations with the dethroned king, and the fact that his province, as well as the Delaware Hundreds, had been James' private property, and were still governed to some extent by "the Duke of York's laws," probably had much to do with prompting this extreme measure. Governor Benjamin Fletcher, of New York, was made "Captain-General" of Pennsylvania on October 24, 1692, by royal patent. He came to Philadelphia April 26, 1693, had his letters patent read in the market-place, and offered the test oaths to the members of the Council. Thomas Lloyd refused to take them, but Markham, Andrew Robeson, William Turner, William Salway, and Lasse Cock all subscribed. Fletcher made Markham his Lieutenant-Governor, to preside over Council in the captain-general's absence in New York. He reunited the Delaware Hundreds to the province, but did not succeed in harmonizing affairs in his new government. The Council and he fell out about the election of representatives to the Assembly. When the Legislature met, Fletcher demanded men and money to aid New York in carrying on the war with the French and Indians. The Assembly refused to comply unless the vote of supplies was preceded by a redress of grievances. Fletcher tried to reason with them. "I would have you consider," he said in his speech to the Assembly, "the walls about your gardens and orchards, your doors and locks of your houses, mastiff dogs and such other things as you make use of to defend your goods and property against thieves and robbers, are the same courses that their majesties take for their forts, garrisons, and soldiers, etc., to secure their kingdom and provinces, and you as well as the rest of their subjects." But the Quakers were not to be convinced by any such arguments. Fletcher had reduced the number of Assemblymen, and when the Legislature met on May 16th, the first thing before the Assembly was a proposition to raise money by taxation, the first tax levied in Pennsylvania and Delaware, and an act was passed levying a penny a pound on property for the support of the government. The sum thus raised amounted to seven hundred and sixty pounds, sixteen shillings. Thus far Fletcher succeeded, only to fail, however, when he attempted to secure the passage of a law providing for organizing the militia. The Assembly did pass an act providing for the education of children, and also one for the establishment of a post-office. A good deal of practical local legislation was done also, probably under Markham's influence, for he was an active, energetic man, and knew the town, the people, and their wants better than any other person could do.
In the winter of 1693, Penn was acquitted by the king of all charges against him and restored to favor, his government being confirmed to him anew by letters patent granted in August, 1694. Penn would probably have returned to his province immediately after his exoneration, but his wife was ill, and died in February, 1694. This great affliction and the disordered state of his finances detained him in England several years longer. After his government was restored to him, his old friend and deputy, Thomas Lloyd, having died, Penn once more appointed his cousin, William Markham, to be Deputy-Governor, with John Goodson and Samuel Carpenter for assistants. These commissions reached Markham on March 25, 1695.
In the mean time Governor Fletcher, with his deputy (this same Markham), had been encountering the old difficulties with Council and Assembly during 1694-95. The dread of French and Indians still prevailed, but it was not sufficient to induce the Quakers of the province to favor a military regime. Indeed, Tammany and his bands of Delawares had given the best proof of their pacific intentions by coming into Philadelphia and entreating the Governor and Council to interfere to prevent the Five Nations from forcing them into the fight with the French and Hurons. They did not want to have anything to do with the war, but to live as they had been living in concord and quiet with their neighbors the Friends. There is no evidence that the league of amity, implied or written, had ever been seriously broken. The Indians would sometimes be drunk and disorderly, and sometimes would steal a pig or a calf, but that was all. As Tammany said in this conference with Fletcher and Markham, "We and the Christians of this river have always had a free roadway to one another, and though sometimes a tree has fallen across the road, yet we have still removed it again and kept the path clear, and we design to continue the old friendship that has been between us and you." Fletcher promised to protect the Delawares from the Senecas and Onondagas, and told them it was to their interest to remain quiet and at peace. When the Legislature met (May 22, 1694), Fletcher, who had just returned from Albany, tried his best to get a vote of men and money, or either, for defensive purposes. He even suggested that they could quiet their scruples by raising money simply to feed the hungry and clothe the naked, but this roundabout way did not commend itself to Quaker simplicity and straightforwardness. A tax of a penny per pound was laid to compensate Thomas Lloyd and William Markham for their past services, the surplus to constitute a fund to be disbursed by Governor and Council, but an account of the way it went was to be submitted to the next General Assembly. Further than this the Assembly would not go. Fletcher wanted the money to be presented to the king, to be appropriated as he chose for the aid of New York and the defense of Albany. He objected likewise to the Assembly naming tax collectors in the act, but the Assembly asserted its undoubted right to control the disposition of money raised by taxation, and thereupon the Governor dissolved it.
In June, 1695, after Markham was well settled in his place as Penn's Deputy-Governor, there were again wild rumors of French designs upon the colonies and of squadrons already at sea to assail them, and this was so far credited that a watch and lookout station was maintained for several months at Cape Henlopen. In the latter part of this same month Markham informed the Council that Governor Fletcher had made a requisition upon him for ninety-one men and officers, or the funds for maintaining that number for the defense of New York. This matter was pressed by Fletcher, but the Council decided that it was too weighty a business to be transacted without consulting the General Assembly, which would not meet before the second week of September. Markham suggested an earlier day for meeting, but the Council thought the securing of the crops a more important business than any proposition that the ex-captain-general had to lay before them. When the Assembly did meet, in September, it at once revealed the cause of the continual discontents which had vexed the province, and gave Deputy-Governor Markham the opportunity to prove that he was an honest man. It voted a tax of a penny per pound and six shillings per capita (from which probably £1500 would have been realized), proposing out of the receipts from the levy to pay Markham £300, contribute £250 towards the maintenance of government, and assign the surplusage to the payment of debts of the government. But the members accompanied this bill with another, a new act of settlement, in which the Assembly secured to itself the privileges which they had sought to obtain from Penn in vain. It was, as has justly been remarked, a species of "logrolling." It had long been practiced with success by Parliament upon the impecunious monarchs of England, and in these modern times has been reduced to a science by nearly all legislative bodies. Markham, however, refused the bait. He declined to give his assent to both bills; the Assembly refused to divorce them, and the Deputy-Governor, in imitation of Fletcher's summary method, at once dissolved them in the very teeth of the charter he was refusing to supersede.
After Markham's first failure to walk in Fletcher's footsteps, he appears to have dispensed with both Council and Assembly for an entire year, governing the province as suited himself, with the aid of some few letters from Penn, made more infrequent by the war with France. On the 25th of September, 1696, however, he summoned a new Council, Philadelphia being represented in it by Edward Shippen, Anthony Morris, David Lloyd, and Patrick Robinson, the latter being secretary. The home government, through a letter from Queen Mary (the king being on the continent), it appeared, complained of the province for violating the laws regulating trade and plantations (probably in dealing with the West Indies). The Council advised the Governor to send out writs of election and convene a new Assembly on the 26th of October. He complied, and as soon as the Assembly met a contest began with the Governor. Markham urged that the queen's letter should be attended to, asking for supplies for defense, and also called their attention to William Penn's pledge that, when he regained his government, the interests of England should not be neglected. The Assembly replied with a remonstrance against the Governor's speech and a petition for the restoration of the provincial charter as it was before the government was committed to Governor Fletcher's trust. That Governor was still asking for money and relief, and Markham entreated that a tax might be levied, and, if conscience needed to be quieted in the matter, the money could be appropriated for the purchase of food and raiment for those nations of Indians that had lately suffered so much by the French. This proposition became the basis of a compromise, the Assembly agreeing to vote a tax of one penny per pound, provided the Governor convened a new Assembly, with a full number of representatives according to the old charter, to meet March 10, 1697, to serve in Provincial Council and Assembly, according to charter, until the lord proprietary's pleasure could be known about the matter; if he disapproved, the act was to be void. Markham yielded, his Council drew up the supply bill and a new charter or frame of government, and both bills became laws.
Markham's new Constitution, adopted November 7, 1696, was couched upon the proposition that "the former frame of government, modeled by act of settlement and charter of liberties, is not deemed in all respects suitably accommodated to our present circumstances." The Council was to consist of two representatives from each county, the Assembly of four; elections to take place on the 10th of March each year, and the General Assembly to meet on the 10th of May each year. The Markham charter goes into details in regard to the oaths or affirmations of officials of all classes, jurors, witnesses, etc.; it sets the pay of Councilmen and members of Assembly, and is on the whole a clear and more satisfactory frame of government than the one which it superseded, while not varying in many substantive features from that instrument. The Assembly secured at least one-half what the framers of the province had so long been fighting for, to wit: That the representatives of the freemen, when met in Assembly, shall have power to prepare and propose to the Governor and Council all such bills as they or the major part of them shall at any time see needful to be passed into law within the said province and territories." This was a great victory for the popular cause. Another equally important point gained was a clause declaring the General Assembly indissoluble for the time for which its members were elected, and giving it power to sit upon its own adjournments and committees, and to continue its sessions in order to propose and prepare bills, redress grievances, and impeach criminals.
There is not much more to say about the history of this period. The Colonial Records furnish a barren tale of new roads petitioned for and laid out; fires, and precautions taken against them and preparations to meet them; tax-bills, etc. William Penn sailed from Cowes on September 9, 1699, for his province. He had arranged his English affairs; he brought his second wife and his daughter and infants with him; probably he expected this time at least to remain in the province for good and all. He reached Philadelphia December 1st, and took lodgings with Robert Wade. The city of his love was quiet, sad, gloomy. It was just beginning to react after having been frightfully ravaged by an epidemic of yellow fever, attended with great mortality, and the people who survived were sober and quiet enough to suit the tastes of the most exacting Quaker.
The first Council attended by Penn met on December 21, 1699, and the issue between the Admiralty Court and the provincial government was given immediate prominence. Col. Quarry was invited to attend the next day's Council meeting, and it was resolved that a proclamation should be forthwith published discouraging piracy and illegal trade. Quarry's charge against Penn's government was that the justices of Philadelphia Court had issued a writ of replevin, and sent the sheriff (Claypoole) to seize goods which were in the custody of the marshal of the Admiralty Court, at New Castle, having been legally seized in the name of the crown; that the justices had been offensive and insolent to Judge Quarry, challenging his commission and claiming that their jurisdiction was co-extensive with his and their authority to unloose fully as great as his to bind; that the sheriff made a pretence of keeping certain pirates in custody, while in fact they were at large every day. This led to a long conference, and it had the result that the Assembly to be called would come prepared to agitate the question of constitutional amendment, as well as that of piracy and illicit trade. It was decided to call the old Assembly to meet on January 25th, a new election being ordered in New Castle County, which had neglected to choose representatives for the last Assembly. At the time named the Assembly came together.
The sheriff of New Castle County returned, in answer to the Governor's writ, that Richard Halliwell and Robert French were elected members of the Council, and John Healy, Adam Peterson, William Guest, and William Houston members of Assembly. The writ for this election is interesting from its unusual form:
"To R. Halliwell, Jn. Donaldson, and Robt French, of Newcastle: Inclosed I send you a writ for ye County of Newcastle, to return their Representative for a Council and Assembly, that I am forced to call with all possible speed. Piracies and Illegal trade have a made such a noise in Engld, and ye jealousies of their being so much encouraged in these Amcan parts, such an impression on the minds of sevll great ones, that I think myself obliged to give them earlier Demonstrations of our Zeal agst all such Practices than an expectation of ye next Assembly (wch comes not on till the Spring), or a full consideration of the Constitution and present frame of Governmt will admit of. The business of this I now call will be very short, and soon over, & ye new Assembly meets soon after, in which I hope to take such effectual measures for the future & better settlemt of this Governmt as will give full satisfaction to all.
"Philada, 12 mo, 1699-1700."
Some of the New Castle people complained that they did not have any sufficient notice of this election. Penn said the sheriff should be punished for his neglect, but in the mean time there would be no business before the present session except what was named in the writ, in which he hoped all would concur, without making the New Castle case a precedent for the future. Committees of Council and Assembly were appointed to consider the subject of the two proposed bills, which, after several conferences and some debate, were passed. The Assembly did not like the clause forbidding trade with Madagascar and Natal; these places, it was explained, had become retreats and retiring-places of the pirates, and trade with them was accordingly forbidden for three years. Penn then dissolved the Assembly, after informing them that he intended to call the next General Assembly according to charter at the usual annual session. Penn had not signified to the Assembly whether or not he approved of the charter granted by Markham in 1696. Nor did he ever formally approve it, for the charter finally granted by Penn in 1701 appeared as if it were an amendment to or substitute for the charter of 1683. Penn apparently was not on very good terms with Markham at this time, or else the latter's ill health (he died in 1704 after a long illness) no longer suffered him to take an active part in government affairs.(9*)
Penn showed himself determined at this time to break up the piracy in the Delaware. He even went a little into the detective and private inquiry business himself. He wrote to Luke Watson: "Thy Son's Wife has made Affidavit to-day before me of what she saw & knows of Geo. Thomson having East India goods by him about ye time Kidd's Ship came to yor Capes: Thy Son doubtless knows much more of the business; I desire therefore thee would cause him to make affidavit before thee of what he knows either of Georges Goods or any of ye rest." To the magistrates at New Castle he wrote that he had information that pirates or persons suspected of piracy had "lately landed below, on this and the other side the River, & that some hover about New Castle, full of Gold. These are to desire you to use your utmost Endeavor and Diligence in discovering and apprhending all such p sons as you may know or hear of that may be so suspected, according to my Proclamation." A similar letter was sent to Nehemiah ffield and Jonathan Bailey.
Birch, collector of customs at New Castle, wrote to Penn under date of May 28, 1700, complaining of vessels having gone down from and come up to Philadelphia without reporting to him. Penn answered he was sorry that masters were so lacking in respect. There was a bill now before the Assembly to make the offense penal. But he thinks a customs collector ought to have a boat, if he wanted to secure the enforcement of the laws, which were all on his side. "Thou canst not expect that any at Philadelphia, 40 miles distant from you, can putt Laws in execution at N. Castle, without any care or vigilance of officers there, if so there needed none in the place, especially since no place in the River or Bay yields ye prospect yt is at New Castle of seeing 20 miles one way and a dozen the other, any vessel coming either up or down." Penn confesses he thinks the particular care he had taken of the interests of the king and his immediate officers deserved a better return "than such testy expressions as thou flings out in thy Letters both to myself and of one to ye members of Council." Birch is reminded that he has forgotten the respect due to the proprietary's station and conduct, and that he should not make Penn a sufferer on account of his pique against the collector at Philadelphia, a matter with which he neither had nor wanted anything to do. "Let your Masters at home decide it; what comes fairly before me I shall acquitt myself of, with Honr & Justice to ye best of my understanding wthout regard to fear or favour, for those sordid passions shall never move ye Proprietr & Govr of Pensilvania." But Penn was not done with Mr. Birch yet. In a postscript he says he hears that the collector talks of writing home, and making he knows not what complaints "I hope thou wilt be cautious in that point lest I should write too, which, when I doe, may prove loud enough to make thee sensible of it at a distance. If thou understands not this, it shall be explained to thee at our next meeting, when I am more at Leisure." This letter, full of conscious power, was palpably meant for Quarry quite as much as Birch. Penn sent the whole correspondence to the Lords of Trade, and when Birch died shortly afterwards, Penn himself appointed his successor protem., in order, as he said, to protect His Majesty's interests, in other words, implying that those interests were not served by either Birch or Quarry.
At the session of the Assembly and Council, in October, 1700, at New Castle, there was a general revision of laws, and a tax bill was passed to raise two thousand pounds. One hundred and four acts were passed at this session of the General Assembly, the most of them being modifications of existing laws, or acts of local character and minor importance. The purchase of land from Indians without consent of the proprietary was forbidden; better provision was made for the poor. Dueling and challenging to combat visited with three months' imprisonment; bound servants forbidden to be sold without their consent and that of two magistrates, and at the expiration of their term of service were to have clothes and implements given them. An act relating to roads gave the regulation of county roads to county justices, and the king's highway and public roads to the Governor and Council; inclosures were to be regulated, corn-field fences to be made pig-tight and five feet high, of rails or logs; when such fences were not provided, the delinquent to be liable to all damages from stock. The counties were to provide railed bridges over streams at their own expense, and to appoint overseers of highways and viewers of fences. A health bill was also passed, providing quarantine for vessels with disease aboard.
A new Assembly was called to meet on the 15th of September, 1701. The proprietary told them he would have been glad to defer the session to the usual time, but he was summoned away to England by news seriously threatening his and their interests. A combined effort was making in Parliament to obtain an act for annexing the several proprietary governments to the crown. A bill for that purpose had passed a second reading in the House of Lords, and it was absolutely necessary for Penn to be on the spot to prevent the success of these schemes. When the Assembly met, Penn told them he contemplated the voyage with great reluctance, "having promised myself the Quietness of a wilderness," but, finding he could best serve them on the other side of the water, "neither the rudeness of the season nor the tender circumstances of my family can overrule my intention to undertake it." At the first regular session of the Assembly since his return (April, 1700) Penn had addressed them on the subject of reforming the charter and laws. Some laws were obsolete, he said, some hurtful, some imperfect and needing improvement, new ones to be made also.
All this, however, was simply preliminary. The Assembly made a remonstrance and petitions of the people of Philadelphia which had been presented to Governor Markham in April, 1697, and again brought before Penn, were made the occasion for an address to the proprietary.(10*) This address was in twenty-one articles, embracing the substance of what the Assembly conceived should be entertained in any new charter. It was made up of specific demands for political privileges and territorial concessions, and, as Gordon observes, was "the germ of a long and bitter controversy." The political privileges demanded were that in case the proprietary left the province, due care should be taken to have him represented by persons of integrity and considerable known estate, with full power to deal with lands and titles, that an ample protective charter should be granted, that all property questions should be settled in the courts, and no longer allowed to go before Governor and Council, and that the justices should license and regulate ordinaries and drinking-houses. The rest of the articles were in reference to the land question, and the freedom of the demands provoked the Governor, who said, on hearing the articles read, that if he had freely expressed his inclination to indulge them, "they were altogether as free in their cravings," and there were several of the articles which could not concern them "as a House of Representatives convened on affairs of Gov'mt." In fact, the Assembly demanded (1) that the proprietary should cease to exercise the right of reviewing and altering the land contracts made in his name by the Deputy-Governor, and that the latter should have power to remedy all shortages and over-measures; (2) that the charter should secure all titles and clear all Indian purchases; (3) that there should be no more delay in confirming lands and granting patents, and the ten in the hundred should be allowed as agreed upon; (4) no surveyor, secretary, or other person to take any extra fees beyond the law's allowance; (5) the ancient land records, made before Penn's coming, should be "lodged in such hands as ye Assembly shall judge to be most safe;" (6) a patent office should be created, like that of Jamaica; (7) that the original terms for laying out Philadelphia were clogged with rents and reservations contrary to the design of the first grant, and these should be eased; (8) "that the Land lying back of that part of the town already built remain for common, and that no leases be Granted, for the future, to make Inclosures to the damage of the Publick, until such time as the respective owners shall be ready to build or Improve thereon, and that the Islands and fflats near the Town be left to the Inhabitants of this town to get their winter ffodder;" (9) that the streets of the town should be regulated and bounded, the ends on Delaware and Schuylkill to be unlimited and left free, and free public landing-places be confirmed at the Blue Anchor Tavern and the Penny Pot-House; (10) the deeds of enfeoffment from the Duke of York for the lower counties should be recorded in their courts, and all lands not disposed of then be letted at the old rate of a bushel of wheat the hundred acres; (11) New Castle should receive the one thousand acres of common land promised to it, and bank-lots these to be confirmed to owners of front lots at low-water mark, at the rent of a bushel of wheat per lot; (12) all the hay marshes should be laid out for commons, except such as were already granted; (13) that all patents hereafter to be granted to the territories should be on the same conditions as the warrants or grants were obtained, and that people should have liberty to buy up their quit-rents, as formerly promised.
Penn informed the Assembly that their address was solely on property, and chiefly in relation to private contracts between him and individuals, whereas he had recommended them to consider their privileges, the bulwark of property. He would never suffer any Assembly to intermeddle in his property. The Assembly retorted that they were of opinion they had privileges sufficient as Englishmen, and would leave the rest to Providence. As to the king's letter demanding a subsidy, the country was too much straitened of late by the necessary payment of their debts and taxes; other colonies did not seem to have done anything, and they must, therefore, beg to be excused.
Penn now made answer to the address, article by article; he would appoint such deputies as he had confidence in, and he hoped they would be of honest character, unexceptionable, and capable of doing what was right by proprietary and province; he was willing to grant a new charter, and to dispense with delays in granting patents; fees he was willing should be regulated by law, but hoped he would not be expected to pay them; the custody of the records was as much his business as the Assembly's; if the Jamaica patent law would improve things he was willing to have it adopted; the claim for town lots was erroneous; the reservations in the city were his own, not the property of the inhabitants; improvements of bed of streets conceded; license proposition conceded; the deeds for Delaware counties were recorded by Ephraim Herman; the other propositions, in substance, so far as they were important, were negatived or referred for revision.
In the course of the discussions the representatives of the lower counties took offense and withdrew from the Assembly; they objected to having the Assembly confirm and re-enact the laws passed at New Castle, since they regarded these as already permanent and established. This was only preliminary to the final separation of the Delaware counties from Pennsylvania. Finally the Assembly was dissolved on Oct. 28, 1701, the Governor having signed an act to establish courts of judicature for the punishment of petty larceny; for minor attachments; for preventing clandestine marriages; for preventing fires in towns; for preventing swine from running at large; for the destruction of blackbirds and crows, and against selling rum to the Indians. Penn also signed the Charter of Privileges, "with a Warrant to Affix the Great Seal to it, wch was delivered with it to Thomas Story, Keeper of the said Seal, and master of the Rolls, to be Sealed and Recorded."
The Charter of Privileges, after a specific preamble, begins by confirming freedom of conscience and liberty of religious profession and worship in ample terms, as had been done in the earlier form of government; it provided for an Assembly of four members from each county, to be elected by the freemen each year on October 1st, and meet in General Assembly October 14th, at Philadelphia. The Assembly to choose its own Speaker and officers, judge the qualification and election of its own members, sit upon its own adjournments, appoint committees, prepare bills in or to pass into laws, impeach criminals and redress grievances, "and shall have all other powers and privileges of an Assembly, according to the rights of the freeborn subjects of England, and as is usual in any of the King's Plantations in America." The freemen of each county, on the election day for Assemblymen, were to select two persons for sheriff and two for coroner, the Governor to commission a sheriff and a coroner, each to serve for three years, from the persons so chosen for him to select from. If the voters neglected to nominate candidates for these offices, the county justices should remedy the defect. "Fourthly, that the Laws of this Govrmt shall be in this stile, vizt. (By the Governour with the Consent and Approbation of the freemen in General Assembly mett) and shall be, after Confirmation by the Governour, forthwith Recorded in the Rolls office, and kept at Philadia, unless the Govr. and Assembly shall agree to appoint another place." "Fifthly, all criminals to have the same privilege of witness and counsel as their accusers; complaints as to property not to be heard anywhere but in courts of justice, unless upon appeal lawfully provided for; no licenses for ordinaries, &c., to be granted but upon recommendation of the County Justices, who also can suppress such houses for disorder and misconduct; suicide was not to work escheat of property nor affect its regular descent to legal heirs; no forfeiture of estates to proprietary in consequence of accidents." The charter was not to be amended or altered in any way but by consent of the Governor and six-sevenths of the Assembly, and the first article, guaranteeing liberty of conscience, "shall be kept and remain without any alteration, Inviolably forever." The Assembly, by this charter, at last secured what it had been contending for ever since the first session at Upland, the parliamentary privilege of originating bills, which must be inherent in every properly constituted legislative body. Penn, in fact, conceded everything but the margin of acres for shortage, the town lots, and the quitrents. To expedite the conveyance of patents, titles, and land-grants he created a commission of property, consisting of Edward Shippen, Griffith Owen, Thomas Story, and James Logan, with power to grant lots and lands and make titles. The new charter did away with an elective Council, and the legislative power was vested exclusively in the Assembly. But Penn commissioned a Council under his own seal to consult and assist him or his deputy or lieutenant in all the public affairs of the province. The Council thus commissioned were to hold their places at the Governor's pleasure, the Deputy-Governor to have the power to appoint men where there was a vacancy, to nominate a president of Council, and even to increase the number of members. The Council as nominated by Penn consisted of Edward Shippen, John Guest, Samuel Carpenter, William Clarke, Thomas Story, Griffith Owen, Phineas Pemberton, Samuel Finney, Caleb Pusey, and John Blunston, any four of them to be a quorum.
On or about November 1, 1701, William Penn, with his wife Hannah, his daughter Letitia, and his infant son John, embarked on board the ship "Dalmahoy" for England. Penn commissioned Andrew Hamilton, formerly Governor of East and West New Jersey, to be his Lieutenant-Governor; and he made James Logan provincial secretary and clerk of Council. While the ship dropped down the river the proprietary wrote his letter of instructions to Logan, from which extracts have been given above. And so Penn passed away from the province he had created, never to return to it again. He died on the 30th of July, 1718 (O.S.), in the seventy-fourth year of his age. The funeral took place August 5th, in the burial-ground at Jordan's Quaker meeting-house, in Buckinghamshire, where his first wife and several of his family were already interred.
After Penn's departure from the Delaware the proceedings of the Governor, Council, and Assembly of the province became monotonous and dreary. A constant struggle was going on, but it had no variations. The same issues were being all the time fought out, over the same familiar ground and by the same parties. The interests of the crown, the interests of the proprietary, the interests of the people, did not harmonize; there was a continual and incessant clash, and yet nothing was settled. The Governors were of inferior metal, the people vexed and complaining, the Penns wanted money, the crown wanted supplies and money, was jealous and solicitous about prerogative, everything seemed to be at odds and outs, yet the colony grew and prospered amazingly. The various and conflicting interests did not disturb a people who were peacefully reaping the fruits of their labors on a kindly soil in a gentle climate, almost untaxed and almost ungoverned, and immigration flowed in like a steady mountain tide.
On July 10, 1701, in advance of official instructions, Lieutenant-Governor Andrew Hamilton and Council ordered Anne of Denmark to be proclaimed Queen of Great Britain, principally because war had been declared with France and Spain, and the use of the sovereign's name was necessary in calling out the militia for defense. This determination to involve the colony in military measures at once provoked the passive resistance of the Quakers. When the time came (November 14, 1701) for the Assembly to meet, the lower counties on the Delaware were not represented. An adjournment was had, elections held, and new representatives chosen, but they likewise refused to go to Philadelphia, and so the Quakers of that county, Bucks and Chester had things all their own way.
Hamilton died April 20, 1703, and was succeeded, on February 2, 1704, by John Evans, Penn's new Governor. He failed in procuring the return of the representatives of the lower counties to the Assembly, alienating them more completely still, and irritating the represented counties by his methods of procedure.
* We have examined with care the evidence both for and against the assumption that Bradford came over in the ship with Penn, and our judgment is that it is by no means proven, but, on the contrary, that the preponderance is against the assumption. The evidence is conflicting.
** Their daughter Mary, who married Isaac Knight, of Abingdon, is stated to have been "one of the first children born of English parents in Pennsylvania." She was born on the 28th of October, 1682, the day of Penn's landing at New Castle.
*** Ephraim and Caspar Herman, who prominently figure in the history of Delaware, were both sons of Augustin Herman, a Bohenian adventurer of great accomplishments; a soldier, scholar, surveyor, sailor, and diplomatist, who, after serving in Stuyveysant's Council in New Amsterdam, and conducting an embassy from him to Lord Baltimore, incurred the haughty director's displeasure, and was cast into prison. He escaped, went into Maryland, surveyed and made a map of the Chesapeake Bay and the province, and was paid with the gift of a territory in Kent and Cecil Counties, which he called Bohemia Manor. It was intersected by a river of the same name. A part of this tract was sold by Herman to a congregation of Labadists, who settled upon it. Ephraim Herman, who was born in 1654, lived chiefly among the Swedes in New Amstel and Upland. He was clerk of the court here in 1676. In 1679 he married Elizabeth von Rodenburg a daughter of the Governor of Curacoa, and took her to Uplands, where he shortly afterwards deserted her to join the Labadists. He returned to her, however, after while, and was in Upland on the day of Penn's arrival.
(4*) The inhabitants of New Castle also made a pledge of obedience to Penn on October 28, 1682, and "solemnly promise to yield to him all just obedience, and to live quietly and peaceably under his government." It was signed by Arnoldus de la Grange, J. de Haes, H.V.D. Brieth, Wm. Simphill, John Holmes, Hendrick Lemmons, Joseph Moore, James Parmes, Jonas Arskine, Giles Barrotts, Pieter Classen, Samuel Land.
(5*) The original commission is preserved at Harrisburg, in the Land Office, from which we have copied the following:
"William Penn, Esq., proprietor and governor of Pennsylvania, New Castle, St. Jones, Whorekills, alias Deal, with their proper liberties: I do, in the king's name, hereby constitute and authorize you, John Moll, Peter Alricks, Johannes de Haes, William Simple, Arnoldus de la Grange, and John Cann, to be justices of the peace, and a court of judicature, for the town of New Castle, upon Delaware, and twelve miles north and west of the same, to the north side of Duck Creek, whereof any four of you shall make a quorum, to act in the said employment and trust, for the preservation of the peace and justice of the province, according to law, hereby willing and charging all persons within the said limits to take notice hereof, and accordingly to yield you all due and just obedience in the discharge of the said trust. And this commission to be in force for the space of one whole year, or until further ordered. Given under my hand and seal, in New Castle, this 28th day of October, 1682.
"For my loving friends, John Moll, Peter Alricks, Johannes de Haes, William Simple, Arnoldus de la Grange, and John Cann, whose acceptance and obligation, signed by themselves, is also preserved as follows:
"We, whose names are here subscribed, being by William Penn, Esq., proprietor and governor of the province of Pennsylvania and New Castle, &c., appointed justices of peace for the town of New Castle, upon Delaware, and twelve miles north and west of the same, to the north side of Duck Creek, do hereby, in the presence of God, declare and solemnly promise that we will, by the help of God be just and true, and faithfully discharge our trust, in obedience to the same commission, and act therein according to the best of our understandings. Witness our hands and seals. Given at Delaware, the 28th October, 1682." (Signed by all of them.)
(6*) In his speech in open court directed to the inhabitants in general, he requested them to bring in at the next court to be held in New Castle, "all their patents, surveys, grants, and claims, which they had to their lands, livings, tenements, and possessions, promising to ascertain, adjust, and confirm not only those as had a sufficient title and right, but also those as yet wanted a certain right to the same, so far forth as equity, justice, and reason could require." He also recommended them to take inspection, view and look over their town plots, to see what vacant room may be found therein for the accommodating and seating of newcomers, traders, and handicraftsmen therein. The proprietary was evidently afraid of being crowded at Philadelphia, where as yet but very little building had been done.
(7*) There is a discrepancy here which it is difficult to make clear. The text follows Hazard: but Mr. Linn, in his work giving the "Duke of York's laws," shows that the "Great Law" as adopted contained only sixty-one sections, and Mr. Hazard's classification is pronounced to be "evidently erroneous." In fact, it is said in Council Proceedings of 1689, that a serious lack of agreement was discovered between the Council copy of laws and the enrolled parchment copies in the hands of the Master of the Rolls. Mr. Linn also claims that Mr. Hazard is in error in regard to the date of the passage of the "Act of Settlement," which was adopted not in 1682, but on March 19, 1683.
(8*) On February 1, 1685, Peter Alrichs was appointed ranger of New Castle County. On the 13th of March, 1686, the freemen of New Castle petitioned the Assembly to keep a fair in the town twice a year. On the 21st of September 1690, fairs were ordered to be held on the 3d and 4th of May in New Castle County, and on 3d and 4th of September in each year.
(9*) Watson, in his "Annals of Philadelphia," says that Markham was but twenty-one years of age when he came out to Pennsylvania, but this must be a mistake, as it would make him only forty-five when he died. At that time he was spoken of as the "old gentleman," and he had two grandchildren. Besides, he died of retrocedent gout, seldom fatal at such an early age. His knowledge of affairs and the confidential positions given him would imply a much older man. He left a widow, a daughter, a son-in-law, two grandchildren, and a "daughter-in-law," at his death. It is probable that Markham's retirement was on account of suspicious circumstances connecting him with the pirates, who, since the French Admiral Pointis had driven them away fom the Caribbean Sea, were become active in Northern waters. Kidd harbored about New York, Avery and Blackbeard about the Delaware; some of Avery's men were in prison in Philadelphia, and Colonel Quarry complained more than once that their confinement was a farce, as they could go when and where they chose. It is certain that Markham suffered some of these men (who had their pockets full of gold) to be treated very leniently. One of Avery's men, Birmingham by name, had intrusted his money to Markham's keeping, and he was allowed by Sheriff Claypoole to walk the streets in summer in custody of a deputy, and in winter to have his own fire. Another person suspected of connection with Avery was James Brown, member of the Assembly from Kent in 1698, and then expelled on account of his relations to the pirates. Penn had him arrested in 1699 for having come over with Avery. He was sent to Boston to be tried by the Earl of Bellamont, Governor of New York. This man is usually suspected of having been Markham's son-in-law, the husband of his daughter, "Mrs. Ann Brown." Penn's letter to Markham, dated 26th January, 1699-1700, is generally supposed to refer to him. It is as follows: "Cosin Markham, When I was with thee to-day thou offered to be bound for thy son-in-law should he bring thee into trouble, it is all the Portion I believe he has with thy daughter. What thou hast I may venture to say thou hast gott by this Governmt. I think it strange yrfore thou shouldst make a Difficulty in binding thy Executive with thyself for his appearance. Should another be bound, no man will take thy Bond for thy own Life, only for a counter security. Thou knowest it is Contrary to the form of all Obligations, & I cannot but take it hard thou should be so unwilling to venture so much for thy own Credit as well as that of the Governmt and for the Husband of thy only Child from those I am not concerned with. I expect a more express answer than thou hast yet given and remain thy affectinate Kinsman, W.P." (Penn's Archives, i. 126.)
Gordon says the pirates were largely reinforced after the peace of Ryswyk, and they made harbor on the Delaware, because they could easily impose on the unarmed, pacific Quakers. They sacked the town of Lewes, and captured many vessels off the Delaware capes. There is nothing improbable in the supposition that Markham was retired on account of the ineffective means employed by him for the suppression of these public plunderers.
(10*) It was a protest against the right of the Assembly and Council, as then constituted, to pass laws and raise taxes. It was signed by Arthur Cook and one hundred and thirteen leading citizens of the place. Penn referred it to Robert Turner, Griffith Jones, Francis Rawle and Joseph Wilcox.
SOURCE: Page(s) 81-99, History of Delaware, 1609-1888, Volume
One by Scharf, Thomas J., Philadelphia; L.J. Richards & Co.,