RepositoryLambeth Palace Library
LevelFile
Alt Ref NoFP XI
TitleVOLUME XI: General Correspondence
Date1626-1723
DescriptionVIRGINIA
1-2. Art. 2 of instructions to Governor Sir George Yardly [Yeardley], Apr. 19, 1626. He is instructed to see that God be 'duly, and daily, served', but there is no specific reference to the Church.
3-4. Two articles from instructions to Governor Sir William Berkeley, 1650. Art. 1 requires him to see that God be 'duly, and daily, served, accord'g to the Form of Religion as established in the Church of England'. He is also to see that every settled minister is provided with a parsonage and glebe. Art. 10 grants him power to probate wills and issue letters of administration. A note in the same hand as this copy says that the same instructions were given to Sir Francis Wyatt in 1638.
5-6. Copy (apparently made later) of act of Assembly, Mar. 23, 1662. No minister to be admitted to officiate in the colony unless he produces letters of orders from a bishop in England. When he qualifies, the governor is requested to induct him into such parish as shall make presentation of him. Unqualified ministers to be silenced and, if recalcitrant, to be expelled under the terms of an act of Mar. 2, 1642. Twelve men in each parish to be chosen as a vestry. Vestry and minister to elect wardens and to fill vacancies in the vestry as they occur. Extracts from instructions to an unnamed governor, undated. Art. 1 gives him power to collate to vacant benefices. Art. 93 directs him not to prefer a minister without a certificate from the Bishop of London and authorizes him to remove by 'the proper and usual means' any incumbent who causes scandal. Note and queries in the same hand as the copy suggest that the instructions claim the right to collate to all parishes as a royal prerogative, regardless of the act. This would suggest that the copy was made during the time of Governor Spotswood.
7-10. John Banister to Robert Morison, The Falls, Apr. 6, 1679. Describes raids by northern Indians on the frontier. Much damage to crops and property but only lives lost were of the commanders of some not very effective efforts at counter-attack. Gives fairly detailed description of crops and wild life, and of the fur trade. Recommends introduction of flax. Refers to past efforts of Governor Berkeley to introduce silk. Notes two varieties of tobacco: Sweet scented, sold to England and the continent, and dark, sold to 'Irish & West Countrymen' or traded to Barbadoes for rum and sugar.
11-12. Two articles from instructions to Governor Thomas Lord Culpeper, Sept. 6, 1679. Art. 15 requires the use of the Book of Common Prayer in public services and directs him to see that churches are kept in repair and more built and ministers provided with house and glebe. Art. 16 requires ministers to have a certificate from the Bishop of London.
13-20. Catalogue, dated May 30, 1695, of books in the library of Colonel Francis Nicholson which are to go to the College of William and Mary on his death.
[21 is not bound in volume but stored loose in a box]
22-23. Nicholas Moreau to Archbishop Tenison, Apr. 12, 1697. He is leaving his parish at the end of a year, because of inadequate remuneration. Is writing more fully about ecclesiastical affairs to the Bishop of Lichfield (24-25). Speaks of learning remedies for the ague and other ills from the Indians.
24-25. Nicholas Moreau to the Bishop of Lichfield (William Lloyd), Apr. 12, 1697. Speaks unfavourably of Blair and most of the rest of the Virginia clergy, but makes no specific charges except that too many of them are Scotch. Urges appointment of a bishop. He recommends Indian remedies and is sending the bishop some snake root oil. A postscript indicates that he may remain if his wife comes over with the next fleet.
26-27. Stephen Fouäce, Rector, Francis Nicholson, Blair, and others associated with the College of William and Mary to Archbishop Tenison, Apr. 16, 1697. Ask his support for the college.
28-29. Stephen Fouäce to Archbishop Tenison, Apr. 22, 1697. Blair, who bears this letter, will give the archbishop details of the college's difficulty, but they all spring from Governor Andros. Fouäce has secured Moreau's appointment to a good parish where he can use his knowledge of medicine.
30-31. Governor Andros to Archbishop Tenison, Apr. 28, 1697. Says that he has never neglected his duty to the Church or college. Cites a recent act of the assembly increasing clerical salaries by 1,000 lb. of tobacco a year.
32-33. Francis Nicholson to Archbishop Tenison, Apr. 30, 1697. Accuses Andros of corruption, as well as of abuse of college and clergy.
34-51. A memorial by Blair, 1697, accusing Andros of hostility to clergy and college. Some of the incidents cited in proof are rather trivial. Others seem to turn on differing interpretations of colonial laws or royal instructions. Includes an attack on Colonel Daniel Park.
52-53. A critique of Andros's conduct of non-ecclesiastical affairs, particularly in regard to courts, council, and assembly. Apparently in Blair's hand. Undated, but probably meant to accompany (34-51).
54-79. Report of a conference at Lambeth, Dec. 27, 1697. Present: Archbishop Tenison, Bishop Compton, Blair, John Povey (from the colonial office), (William) Byrd, representing Andros, and --- Marshall and --- Harrison, two leading colonists who were more or less neutral. They first disposed of two charges against Blair. First, that he packed the colonial ministry with Scotchmen, who trouble the council with complaints about their salaries. Blair pointed out that the petition concerning salaries was signed by all the clergy, English as well as Scotch. Povey mentioned three errant ministers who he thought were Scotch: Greg, held to be guilty of sodomy, Doyley, who had complained of his parish in some way unspecified, and Monroe. Blair said that Greg and Doyley were English and that there were no complaints against Monroe. Byrd mentioned --- Gordon, who was a drunkard. Blair admitted that he was Scotch, but denied bringing him in, and said he had sought to remove him but could not get clear evidence. Bishop Compton said that, if anyone was responsible for the presence of the Scotch clergy, he was. Byrd and Povey then hastily withdrew their criticisms. Blair admitted appointing a Scotch schoolmaster, Inglis, because he could not get an English one. Byrd agreed that Inglis was satisfactory. Secondly, Blair was accused of misappropriating college funds by drawing his salary as president before building was completed. Byrd maintained that the charter reserved all funds for building until it was finished. Blair, who Catalogueded the charter, denied this interpretation. Blair then made his charges against Andros, whom he accused of discouraging contributions to the college; not supporting an act to facilitate collections; devaluating land granted to the college, by opening adjoining land to settlement; not enforcing collection of the export duty of a penny a pound of tobacco imposed for the benefit of the college; encouraging his followers to stay away from meetings of the governors of the college, so that it was difficult to make a quorum; and persecuting Blair personally. Reference to an attempt to turn Blair out of his parish led to a discussion of the uncertainty of ministerial tenure. Byrd said that this was not the governor's fault, as the vestries failed to present. Blair maintained that, if presentation lapsed, the governor, as ordinary, had the power to collate, and the archbishop supported this view. There was discussion of the governor's failure to approve a bill increasing the salaries of the clergy, though he later secured the passage of another such bill. There was debate whether the governor's offer of bricks for the college chapel was refused or withdrawn and whether or not Blair had been expelled a second time from the council after being restored by royal order.
80-81. Archbishop Tenison to Bishop Compton, May 21, 1698. Unable to attend the council meeting because of gout, he expresses his opinion that things are very unsatisfactory in Virginia and suggests Nicholson as a suitable person for governor.
82. Minute of a meeting of the colonial council, James City, Jan. 30, 1698(9). Council, presided over by Nicholson, had a dispute with ex- Governor Andros over the transfer of records. It was alleged that James Sherlock, the former clerk of the council, had never been properly sworn.
83-86. Minutes of council meetings from Dec. 10, 1698, to Apr. 28, 1699. Concerned with the replacement of Sherlock by Benjamin Harrison as clerk and with a search for missing records. Notation on wrapper indicates that this transcript was supplied by Nicholson.
87-88. Governor Nicholson to ---, James City, June 28, 1699. Concerned with financial arrangements at beginning of his governorship. He accuses Andros of various acts of misappropriation, though these charges seem to be based on differing interpretations of the governor's instructions.
89-94. Copies in Nicholson's hand, and endorsed by him, of letters exchanged between him and William Byrd, Oct. 3, 1697, to Oct. 12, 1699. Chiefly concerned with Byrd's efforts to transfer his allegiance gracefully from Andros to Nicholson on the latter's succession. Indicate that Byrd had been named colonial agent.
95-100. Copies in Nicholson's hand, and endorsed by him, of letters from William Popple, Whitehall, June 5, 1699, and John Povey, Whitehall, June 17, 1699, and Oct. 13, 1699. Popple acknowledges an acknowledgement of some favour and encloses a letter from the Earl of Bridgwater. Povey seeks to persuade Nicholson that neither he nor --- Blaithwait ever opposed him, but the second letter shows that he has been superseded as agent by Byrd.
101-2. James Blair to Archbishop Tenison, Williamsburgh, Feb. 12, 1699/1700. Reports that contributions to the college are coming in again. Assembly is engaged in a revision of the laws. Blair, asked for advice, made some recommendations concerning the support of the clergy and the education of Indian children. These, though said to be enclosed, are not in present collection.
103-4. Court at Kensington, Mar. 7, 1699/1700. On recommendation of a committee appointed to inquire into the proposal, the King in Council authorized the settlement of Marquis de la Muce and other French refugees in Norfolk County, Virginia. Copy attested by John Povey.
105-6. Address of Governor Nicholson to the clergy, assembled for a commissarial visitation, James City, Apr. 10, 1700. Their reply, Apr. 11. He instructs them to show their licences to Commissary Blair, expresses respect for their office, and urges them to exemplary living. They, in reply, express their respect for him and their good and zealous intentions.
107-8. Duplicate of (105-6).
109-10. Special instruction from Lords Justices to all governors, July 25, 1699. As illegal trade flourishes in spite of previous instructions and the enforcement of the Acts of Trade and Navigation meets with obstruction, especially in proprietary and charter colonies, governors are again instructed to make special efforts for the enforcement of these acts. Certificates dated Apr. 6 and Apr. 20, 1700, from royal officers and colonial justices attest that they have met with no obstruction under Nicholson, but have received firm support from him. (All documents are copies.)
111-12. B. Harrison to Governor Nicholson, May 23, 1700. Resigning his post as clerk of the council because he has been appointed to assist in revising the laws and because the clerk's salary does not meet the expenses of his office.
113-16. Governor Nicholson to Archbishop Tenison, Jamestown, May 27, 1700. Governor Blakiston and Commissary Bray have both recently been with him. They are all surprised and disturbed by the disallowance of the latest Maryland establishment act. It is planned that the president (Blair) should reside at William and Mary beginning in the fall. The college is seeking a professor of mathematics and philosophy, for which the archbishop's recommendation is sought. Nicholson encloses (85-86 and 89-100) as well as copies of letters and documents relating to Maryland and other colonies.
117-18. James Blair to Archbishop Tenison, May 29, 1700. Governors of William and Mary have named the archbishop as chancellor, a post which has to be filled every four years. Bishop Compton previously held it. Blair asks for a gift of books for the college. The authorities are treating with the Indians in an effort to secure some boys to be educated under the Boyle legacy. Colony prospers, but is afflicted with pirates. The governor lately captured one, Captain Lewis, who is being sent home for trial, as the governor had to grant him that much quarter to keep him from blowing up his ship and destroying his captives when he was cornered.
119-20. Nicholas Moreau to Archbishop Tenison, May 29, 1700. Begs permission to return to England because of ill health and because his wife is unwilling to come to this 'ill famed place'.
121-2. Governor Nicholson to Archbishop Tenison, July 23, 1700. Fears opposition to the new establishment in Maryland. Says that Governor Blakiston openly states that he dislikes this country and only came here to make his fortune. Comments on omission of Bishop of London from newly formed Council of Trade and Plantations.
123-4. James Blair to Archbishop Tenison, William and Mary College, July 13, 1702. Sent by Stephen Fouäce, who is returning. Blair has now broken with Nicholson, and the letter is an attack on him for arbitrariness and violence. A special row was occasioned by Blair's sermon on the death of William III.
125-6. Peregrine Cony on behalf of Governor Nicholson to Archbishop Tenison, Kikotan, July 22, 1702. Nicholson is too ill to write. He encloses some documents bearing on Virginia affairs, including Blair's sermon, which are not in the present collection. Nicholson objected to Blair's sermon, which was preached before him, because it contained reflections on James II and on Nicholson.
127-8. Governor Nicholson to Archbishop Tenison, on board H.M.S. Southampton, July 28, 1702. Says that his dispute with Blair will not keep him from continuing to do his best for the clergy and college.
129-32. Statement, attributed in notation to Stephen Fouäce, and apparently in his hand, but unsigned. Presented to Archbishop Tenison, Oct. 28, 1702. Seeks to justify his and Blair's reversal of judgement in respect to Nicholson by citing several specific instances of alleged arbitrariness and violence of temper by the governor.
133-58. Instructions to Governor Nicholson on his receiving his commission from Queen Anne, Dec. 12, 1702. Includes directions for most recurrent problems of colonial administration in a form that was already becoming standardized. Lists council members by name. Ecclesiastical clauses, besides calling for toleration for all Protestants, repeat former requirements that services be according to the rites of the Church of England, that churches be kept in repair, that ministers have a competent maintenance and a house and glebe, and be members of their vestries. Ministers and schoolmasters must be licensed by the Bishop of London, whose jurisdiction is to be supported in all matters except collating to benefices, issuing marriage licences, and probating wills, which are reserved to the governor.
159-60. Copies of addresses of Governor Nicholson to the assembly, Mar. 20-30, 1703. Chiefly concerned with proclamation of a day of thanksgiving for success of English arms and with obtaining an appropriation to aid in the defence of New York.
161-2. Governor Nicholson to the House of Burgesses, Mar. 29, 1703. It has been reported in England that the house's earlier refusal to give aid to New York was because the governor advocated it. Asks for a resolution on this matter. Resolution, adopted Mar. 30, 1703, says that the refusal was for other reasons than the governor's advocacy. Acknowledgement of this resolution by Nicholson, Mar. 31, 1703.
163-4. Governor Nicholson to the House of Burgesses, Apr. 6, 1703. Glad that they have started the revision of the laws. Recommends an adjustment of parish lines. Burgesses to the governor, Apr. 8, 1703. They have concurred in the general thanksgiving, but refuse to aid the defence of New York on the ground that it will not benefit Virginia. Action deferred on a proposal of the governor's that a servant be given a gun when he receives his freedom. Petition for election of a burgess from James City rejected.
165-6. Action of the Council on the Queen's call for aid to New York, at meetings from Mar. 30 to Apr. 9, 1703. They refused to put any pressure on the burgesses to secure the passage of an appropriation and gave it as their opinion that it would be unwise to send any militiamen to New York.
167-8. Address of the council to Queen Anne, Apr. 10, 1703. Attempt to excuse irregularities in an earlier address to William III on occasion of a previous refusal of aid, but, though apologetic, they are still refusing.
169. Opinion of attorney-general Edward Northey, July 29, 1703. Holds that English laws concerning presentation apply in Virginia and that the governor has the power to collate if presentation is not made within six months of vacancy.
170-1. Clergy of Virginia to Bishop Compton, Aug. 25, 1703, with some signatures added Sept. 22. Defend Nicholson against Blair. Refer to Blair's 'sudden departure'. Incomplete commendatory address to Nicholson on same sheet. Continuing sheet evidently missing.
172-3. Memoranda, showing evidence of hasty Catalogueding, addressed by six of the clergy to --- Sloughter on the occasion of his going to England. Dated 1703 in notation and evidently related to the foregoing address (170-1) for it specifies points to be made in case against Blair. Asserts that all the English clergy and most of the Scotch are on their side.
174-5. Copy of Northey's opinion (169) with order from council, Williamsburgh, Mar. 3, 1703, directing that copies be sent to the churchwardens of the several parishes with instructions that it be read to the vestries and entered on the minutes.
176-9. Act against blasphemy, passed by general assembly begun Oct. 23, 1705. Besides providing penalties for profane swearing, it prohibits denial of the being of God, the Trinity, the truth of the Christian religion or the divine authority of scripture. Fines provided for absence from service in the parish church for more than a month (except Protestant dissenters).
180-1. Note of action of council in regard to the above act, 1705. They allowed some departures from the strict instructions of the Lords Commissioners of Trade and Plantations on which the act was based so as to ease its passage through the assembly. One of these was raising the age for the penalty for absence from church from sixteen to twenty-one years. Another was not exempting the clergy from the penalties of the act.
182-3. Mongo Ingles to Governor Nicholson, Queens Creek, Sept. 20, 1707. Suggests a fresh inquiry into the fire that destroyed the building of William and Mary. He says that the inquiry conducted by Blair suppressed evidence that the fire started at the south instead of the north end of the building. He seems to believe that this implicates the Blair party in some way.
184-5. Catalogue of parish library at Manicatown, with receipt for the same signed by John Cairon in the presence of Henry Newman and Peter Roe, Oct. 14, 1710.
186-7. Extract from a speech of Governor Spotswood to the assembly, Nov. 1711. He has persuaded the chiefs of the neighbouring tribes to send some of their youth for education at William and Mary.
188-91. Representation of the council of Virginia to the Lords Commissioners of Trade and Plantation, Sept. 11, 1713. Represent the colony as being virtually ruined by the decline in the tobacco trade, which they attribute to the high duties and to the practice of collecting these from the importer rather than from the retailer or consumer.
192-5. Treaty between Governor Alexander Spotswood and that portion of the Tuscrora Nation formerly based in North Carolina which had withdrawn into Virginia as the result of a war with North Carolina. Feb. 27, 1713(14). They agree to become tributaries and accept the rule of the governor and to admit teachers to instruct their children in English and Christianity in return for which the governor agrees to admit them to a reserved area within the colony, to grant them his protection and to seek to make peace with the Seneca Indians on their behalf.
196-9. Published catalogue gives this as a duplicate of 192-5, but correction to catalogue from Professor Kimball (1971) states that is is not a duplicate and gives: "Treaty between Governor Alexander Spotswood and the Tottero, Ocionuchee, Saponie and Stukanox Indians, Feb. 27, 1713/14. They agree to continue to be tributaries, and to admit teachers and ministers to instruct their children in English and Christianity, and to remove to new lands. Renews offer to send their children to be educated at College of William and Mary".
200-3. Published catalogue gives this as a duplicate of 192-5, but correction to catalogue from Professor Kimball (1971) states that is is not a duplicate and gives: "Treaty between Governor Alexander Spotswood and the Nottoway Indians, Feb. 27, 1713/14. They agree to continue to be tributaries, to admit teachers and ministers to instruct their children in English and Christianity, and to remove to new lands. Renews offer of sending their children to be educated at College of William and Mary."
204-5. Lords Commissioners of Trade and Plantation to --- , Whitehall, Apr. 16, 1714. Transmitting (188-91) with a similar representation from Maryland for Her Majesty's consideration.
206-7. Extract from speech of Governor Spotswood to the General Assembly, Nov. 17, 1714. He is sending the tributary Indians, guarded by a few white men, to the reservation assigned to them in the treaty (192-5).
Extract from address of the House of Burgesses to the governor, Nov. 25, 1714, congratulating him on the treaty.
208-12. Act passed by assembly in session from Oct. 22, 1712, to Nov. 16, 1714, to regulate the Indian trade. Restricts trade with tributary Indians to Fort Christanna, lately erected in their territory. Forbids any Indians to come within 300 yards of a white man's 'mansion' without a passport, and provides for the formation of a corporation under Governor Spotswood to monopolize the fur trade.
213-20. A copy of (208-12).
221-2. James Blair to Bishop Robinson, Williamsburg, Nov. 18, 1714. Acknowledges his appointment as commissary and another letter brought by John Robinson. Says that as the colonists showed a great aversion to ecclesiastical courts, Bishop Compton advised him to restrain his jurisdiction to the regulation of the clergy. He does that by admonition and, in a few cases, a visitation of the parish and trial of the clergyman, either acquitting or suspending him. The death of Queen Anne was commemorated with funeral services in all the churches, by order of the government, and the succession of George I proclaimed 'with all decent joy'. Blair does not know of any disaffected person in the colony. Praises Governor Spotswood. Colonists hope that tobacco trade will be revived by recent act of Parliament for its encouragement and by a colonial law designed to improve the staple.
223-6. Governor Spotswood to Bishop Robinson, Jan. 27, 1714(15). Describes his efforts to settle the Indians around Fort Christanna and his plans to combine their conversion with the promotion of the fur trade by his company. Some of the Indian children at William and Mary have already learned to read and recite the catechism. Some of them desire baptism, but the clergy are divided on propriety of it. Some hold, that not having Christian parents, they should not be baptized until they are old enough to give an account of their faith for themselves. He asks the bishop for a ruling. Suggests that John Robinson, a relative of the bishop's, be added to the council.
227-8. Charles Griffin to Bishop Robinson, Christanna, Jan. 10, 1716. Employed by Governor Spottswood to instruct the Indian children in a school erected by the company, he reports a friendly reception by the Indians and success in his work. The governor, Reverend John Cargill, and others of his party, were much impressed on a recent visit.
229-30. Philip Ludwell, rector of William and Mary, to Bishop Robinson, July 10, 1716. Asks him to recommend someone to be professor of philosophy and mathematics. Post pays £80 plus student fees. The amount of these is given and then crossed out. John Fontain [Fountaine], a clergyman who has a private academy in Dublin, has been recommended and has been referred to the bishop on whose recommendation they will depend.
231-4. James Blair to Bishop Robinson, Williamsburg, May 14, 1717. Seven clergymen recently recommended by the bishop, John Brunskill, Benjamin Pownall, Thomas Philips, Samuel Barnard, Thomas Hughs, Peter Fountaine [Fontaine], and Hugh Jones have all been placed. Last named is professor of mathematics and philosophy in William and Mary. Arthur Blackamore, who recently headed the grammar school of the college, was drunk so often that the governors determined to dismiss him. He sought a six months' reprieve and a testimonial to the bishop so that he could be ordained. This was agreed to on condition that he kept sober during the period. He almost made it, but relapsed at the end. In ignorance of this fact most of the governors signed the testimonial and it was given the seal of the college. He was succeeded as schoolmaster by Mongo Inglis.
235-6. Governor Spotswood to Bishop Robinson, June 13, 1717. Acknowledges letter by Thomas Lee. (Giles) Rainsford, unwilling to return to his former parish, has taken one on the Rappahannock. --- Seagood has just arrived. There was some delay in placing Hugh Jones in the college due to disagreement among the governors. Spotswood implies that Ludwell leads the opposition. Thanks to the bishop's efforts in supplying clergy, there are only three vacancies in the regular parishes. There is also a vacancy in Manican Town, where Cairon died two years ago. This is a French-speaking parish, unable to pay the regular salary for a minister. Spottswood acknowledges election as member of Society for the Propagation of the Gospel --- Bagg, a deacon, is coming home for priest's orders.
237-8. Inhabitants of Monocantown to Bishop Robinson, Mar. 25, 1718. (In French.) Ask him to send a minister who can officiate in French and English.
239-40. Catalogueds of three letters by Bishop Robinson, all dated Aug. 6, 1718. Letter to the clergy of Virginia says that he hopes that they are all well behaved, but has had some reports to the contrary, and that he has asked the governor to make sure that they are all licensed by his predecessor or himself. Letter to Blair to enclose this letter. Letter to Governor Spotswood to enclose both of the preceding letters.
241-4. Governor Spotswood to vestry of St. Anne's Parish, Sept. 3, 1718. (Copy, unsigned, but identified in notation.) The parish rejected Bagg, appointed by the governor as their minister, and presented Rainsford. Having been advised by the council that the power of presentation was reserved to the governor by his instructions he refuses to induct Rainsford and tries to persuade them to accept Bagg, who had officiated among them when a deacon.
245. Opinion of Robert Raymond, Lincolns Inn, Nov. 17, 1718. He holds that the right of presentation is lodged in the vestries both by the act of assembly and by the normal rules of canon law, since the parishes build and endow their own churches. The governor claims the right to appoint ministers because his commission gives him power to collate. Raymond doubts that a commission can take away an existing right, especially when the wording may be interpreted consistently with that right, as in this case, for the power conferred to collate may be held to hold only in the case of lapsed presentation.
246-68. Journal of a convention of the clergy held at Williamsburgh in April, 1719. Copies of letters from Bishop Robinson to Commissary Blair and the clergy (239-40) entered on the minutes. A letter from the governor expressed the opinion that the commissary was the one most guilty of irregularities in opposing the governor's right to collate and in allowing his clerk (a layman) to read services. A copy of the governor's letter to St. Anne's vestry was spread upon the minutes (241-4). Blair was asked to print his sermon. He replied that he had never appeared in print, but would make a fair copy and send it to the bishop. An address to the governor, expressing their respect and their appreciation of his zeal in their behalf, was adopted. The clergy reported that they knew of none who was without the bishop's licence, but about half of them doubted that Blair was episcopally ordained. They agreed that there were irregularities in the services, some of which were rendered inevitable by conditions. They knew of no moral irregularities among themselves. In their letter to the bishop they state that the size of their parishes prevents their having more than one service a Sunday and necessitates the performances of burials, baptisms, and churchings at home, sometimes with laymen officiating. The only holy days observed are Christmas and Good Friday. Their lack of title weakens their efforts to enforce canonical regularity and enables the vestries to cut their salaries. Governor Spottswood is doing his best for them in this matter, but is opposed by Blair. Journal attested by Blair, Hugh Jones, and John Bagg.
269-84. Duplicate of (246-68).
285-6. Hugh Jones to Bishop Robinson, May 30, 1719. Encloses (246-68) and (287), which he says is the best that Blair could produce in the way of ordination certificate. Vestry of James City have hired Jones to officiate two Sundays in three, letting the clerk officiate the third. Vestry of Hanover Parish have built a chapel and levied a salary for a 'Lay-man of Enthusiastical Principles' though they have a regular minister.
287. Certificate referred to in (285-6). Signed by Jo: Edinburgh, it states that 'James Blair Presbyter' officiated as rector of Cranston in the diocese of Edinburgh several years before 1683 and behaved 'loyallie, peaceably and canonicallie'. No reference to ordination.
288-9. --- Dell to Reverend Mr. Berriman, Oct. 28 (1721). Reports arrival, after a long voyage and near wreck in a ship commanded by Captain Jno. Hodgson. He has been recommended to Northampton Parish. Letter unsigned. Writer and year identified in notation.
290-1. Lawrence De Butte to --- Berryman, Nov. 5, 1721. Reports his arrival in Virginia, thus relieving Berryman of the bond signed in his behalf when he received the royal bounty. He has gone to Washington Parish. Refers to Dell's appointment to Northampton, which he says has the best glebe in the colony.
292-3. Governor Spottswood to Bishop Robinson, Dec. 1, 1721. Acknowledges letters recommending Dell, DeButt, and others. --- Bailey, with a license from Bishop Compton for Maryland but without any recommendation for Virginia, has thrust himself into two parishes without the governor's collation. In one case, he opposed the governor's appointee, James Falconer. The governor implies that the collation dispute is under adjudication and that he has formed a truce with Blair. Unwilling to break it, he refers the bishop to Hugh Jones, now in England, for an account of Blair's activities.
294-5. Lawrence DeButte to --- Berriman, July 1, 1722. He is still a little annoyed at Dell's having a better glebe than he does. His parish is not in the best tobacco area, but there are so many vacancies around that he earns quite a bit by extra preaching. He has persuaded some masters to have their slaves baptized. Parishioners want him to consecrate their nearly completed brick church, as is often done by clergymen here, but he tells them that that power is reserved to a bishop.
296-7. Vestry of Martins Brandon Parish to Reverend Joshua Richardson, July 14, 1722. Ask him to obtain a minister for them and persuade the bishop to license him. They would prefer an Englishman.
298-9. Jos. Ball to Bishop Robinson, Jan. 16, 1723. George Murdoch, forty-five, lacking academic education but a 'pretty good Grammarian' with a reading knowledge of New Testament Greek, desires to enter holy orders but cannot afford the trip to England just to be rejected. The bishop's direction is requested. Notation: 'No answer.'
300-1. Act passed in General Assembly between Dec. 5, 1722, and May 9, 1723. Divides the parish of Wilmington, which is split by the Chicohominy River, into two parts, to be attached to James City and Blissland parishes.
302. Another copy of the same act.
303-4. Another copy of the same act.
305-8. Memorial of Alexander Forbes, presented to the General Assembly, May 9, 1723, the day it was prorogued (cf. 300-1). Originally intended to be signed by several of the clergy, but as they were unable to meet, Forbes presents it on his own behalf. To check fornication and other sins, he recommends that the minister, wardens, and vestry of any parish be empowered to present offenders. Persons who go into Carolina to unite in polygamous, incestuous, or otherwise irregular marriages, and return to Virginia, should be 'made obnoxious'. 'Vagabond couples' cohabiting under the pretext of marriage should be required to produce their marriage certificates. A system for examining and licensing private schoolmasters should be set up. The bounds of many large parishes south of the James River should be restricted. Those left out of the parishes should choose a layman to read services and be provided with the sacraments by neighbouring clergy. There should be better arrangements for the payment of ministers' salaries. The chief complaints are that the tobacco is collected too late for shipment and in hogsheads that are too light.
309. James Blair to (Alexander Forbes?), Williamsburgh, June 10, 1723. Asks for return of a book. He has admonished Bayly, but fears that he will have to take further proceedings. It is, however, difficult to obtain proof. Offence not named. He also has bad reports of Worthen. Because of shortage of ministers, he is inclined to be lenient, but the behaviour of some is so flagrant that it would be better to be without ministers than to have such. 'My brother Monro' is dying of consumption.
310-11. John Garzia to (Bishop Robinson, probably, in ignorance of his death. Cf. 312-13), July 7, 1723. A testimonial to James McGill, formerly tutor to the children of Colonel John Taylor, who is seeking orders.
312-13. James Blair to (Bishop Gibson, not named, but identified in 316-17), Williamsburgh, July 9, 1723. News of Bishop Robinson's death has just reached Virginia, but not the name of his successor. Blair asks Gibson to intercede with the new Bishop of London for his continuance as commissary. If Gibson is named, it will be a great honour to serve under him. Blair hopes that Doctor Bray has delivered the concluding books of his discourses on the Sermon on the Mount.
314-15. Emmanuel Jones to Bishop Gibson, Petsworth Parish, July 20, 1723. Congratulating him on his translation. Begs 'no boon but your Blessing'.
316-17. James Blair to Bishop Gibson, Williamsburgh, July 22, 1723. Having learned of the bishop's appointment, he renews his plea to be continued commissary. Governor Spotswood inspired some people to bring charges against him to Bishop Robinson, but, when the bishop asked for affidavits, no one would sign any. Spotswood was deeply involved in 'what they called the Queen's Measures'. Present governor, Hugh Drysdale, is more friendly. A postscript says that Nicholas Jones has arrived from Ireland under an arrangement between the Archbishop of Dublin and Bishop Robinson, whereby Bishop Robinson was to authorize the payment of the royal bounty on a certificate from the commissary that he had arrived and was officiating in Virginia.
318-19. Governor Hugh Drysdale to Bishop Gibson, Williamsburgh, Nov. 26, 1723. Congratulates him on his translation and commends Blair. Mentions being acquainted with the bishop when they were both at Queen's College, Oxford.
CustodialHistoryAlso cited as FP 11
CopiesMicrofilm: Lambeth Palace Library MS Film 757
RelatedMaterialAn item mis-sorted and bound in the volume for Bermuda and Jamaica really relates to Virginia:
Anonymous petition to Bishop Gibson, 1723. Begs him to do something to secure the release of mulattoes, who are often slaves to their brothers and sisters, as the writer asserts himself to be (ref: FP XVII/167-8).

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