« AnteriorContinuar »
its taking Place? Was it bad, as they say 'tis, then certainly 'twas their Duty to have done all in their power to prevent its taking Effect. All Men must confess, the Plan was either good or bad; if 'twas good, Why do they blame it? if 'twas bad, Why have they done Nothing about it? ...
Stephen Hopkins, A True Representation of the Plan formed at Albany, in 1754, for Uniting all the British Northern Colonies (Rhode Island Historical Tracts, No. 9, Providence, 1880), 40-46 passim.
4. Plan of a Federal Union of the
Colonies (1755) )
By BENJAMIN FRANKLIN
(See note above, p. 170.)
The commissioners from a number of the northern colonies, being met at Albany, and considering the difficulties that have always attended the most necessary general measures for the common defence, or for the annoyance of the enemy, when they were to be carried through the several particular Assemblies of all the colonies; some Assemblies being before at variance with their governors or councils, and the several branches of the government not on terms of doing business with each other; others taking the opportunity, when their concurrence is wanted, to push for favorite laws, powers, or points, that they think could not at other times be obtained, and so creating disputes and quarrels; one Assembly waiting to see what another will do, being afraid of doing more than its share, or desirous of doing less, or refusing to do any thing, because its country is not at present so much exposed as others, or because another will reap more immediate advantage; from one or other of which causes, the Assemblies of six out of seven colonies applied to, had granted no assistance to Virginia, when lately invaded by the French, though purposely convened, and the importance of the occasion earnestly urged upon them;considering moreover, that one principal encouragement to the French, in invading and insulting the British American dominions, was their knowledge of our disunited state, and of our weakness arising from such want of union; and that from hence different colonies were, at different times, extremely harassed, and put to great expense both of blood and treasure, who would have remained in peace, if the enemy had had cause to fear the drawing on themselves the resentment and power of the whole ;-the said commissioners, considering also the present encroachments of the French, and the mischievous consequences that may be expected from them, if not opposed with our
force, came to an unanimous resolution; That a union of the colonies is absolutely necessary for their preservation. ...
Jared Sparks, The Works of Benjamin Franklin (Boston), III. 32-33.
5. Military Preparedness (1755)
By DocToR WILLIAM DOUGLASS
A A Scotchman by birth. A physician practicing in Boston. Author of several books.
Taxes consist in the articles of rates, impost, and excife.
Rates comprehend the poll-tax. Every person annually, at or before September 10, to give in a list of his polls and rateable estate: those lifts to be returned to the general court in October: perfons to be four-folded who leave out part of their estate, or who give in no estate ; the lifters may relieve people overcharged, may appeal to a justice and to the select-men of the town. Every male person from fixteen to seventy æt. to be set in the list at 18 1. (governor, deputy governor, assistants, ministers of the gospel, president and tutors of the collegiate school, students there, fchool-masters and infirm perfons are excused) every ox at 41; each steer, cow, or
heifer of three years and upwards at 31; steer or heifer of two years at 40 s; each steer or heifer of one year 20 ș. Each horse or mare of three years old and upwards at 3 1. of two years old 40 s. of one year old 20 s. Every swine one year old and upwards 20 s. Each dwellinghouse with adjoining land 20 s. per acre; plow and mowing land in fome counties 15 s. in others 10 s. in others 7 s. 6 d. per acre; boggy mowing meadow land 5 s. per acre; all upland pasture or mowing 8 s. per acre. "Peculiars to be affefsed by the nearest town. Vefsels at 15 s. per tun. The president of Yale college, and all ministers of the gospel, their estates in the towns where they live are exempted. All allowed attornies at the law, 50 1. their faculty; and others higher in proportion to their business. All traders, &c. to be rated for their faculties at the discretion of the listers.
Rates. In our American colonies, in assessing of rates, real estate is generally valued at seven years income, which is favourable. In GreatBritain lands are sold at twenty to thirty years purchase.
In Connecticut 1 d. rate, produces 4000 1. to 5000 1. currency.
IMPOST. There is a high duty upon the exportation of all timber and lumber to the neighbouring governments. By the act for forming and regulating the
militia. The governor to be captain general, the deputy governor lieutenant general: the military companies of the several townships to be formed into 13 regiments of foot, and to each regiment of foot, one troop of horse of 64 men, officers included. The field officers of each regiment, colonel, lieutenant colonel, and major, to be appointed by the general assembly, and commiffioned by the governor. Once in four years to be called together for regimental exercise. All male persons from 16 to 50 æt. to attend military musters, excepting Indians and negroes, secretary, justices, church officers, members of the collegiate school, allowed physicians and surgeons, representatives, school-masters; attornies at law, a miller to each grist mill, ferry men, constant herdsmen, constant mariners, sheriffs, constables, and impotent persons. All militia lifted soldiers to be provided, besides his accoutrements, with one pound of good powder, four pound of bullets, and twelve flints. In each company of 64 foldiers besides officers, there shall be a capt. a lieut. and four serjeants; where 32 soldiers, there shall be a lieut, ensign, and two ferjeants; where but 24 foldiers there shall be two serjeants. The companies to be trained four times a year, every soldier for not appearance to pay 3 S.
The arms and ammunition of all persons in the government to be viewed on the first Monday