Disposition of the Biennial Act 1737 The Biennial Act of Carolina referring the biennial meeting of Assemblies & regulation of elections & members. It seems that these assemblies have powers that the Crown never gave to them. The power to convene Parliaments is the exclusive privilege of the Crown &Continue Reading

Governor Gabriel Johnston’s Request to Repeal the Biennial Act, 18 October 1736 I’m addressing your Lordships to ask you to advise His Majesty to repeal the Biennial Act, to order that no precinct send in more than 2 members, & relieve me of the task of establishing a precinct withoutContinue Reading

The North Carolina Biennial Act, 1715 Act on Biennial & other Assemblies, & Regulating Elections & Members The Assembly of the colony of North Carolina wishes to enlarge the number of constituencies, as well as increase the frequency with which the assembly will meet. The precincts will be determined byContinue Reading

Governor Burnet of Massachusetts on the Governor’s Salary, 17 September 1728 I thought it’d be best to delay in responding to your message so that you could check in with your constituencies & to see if there was any progress in the question of my salary. But now it’s clearContinue Reading

Massachusetts House of Representatives on the Governor’s Salary, 11 September 1728 The governor’s salary was often used as a weapon by representatives to coerce him into signing bills, as was the case in South Carolina with Governor Glen. The Crown gave instructions to governors to establish a permanent payment ofContinue Reading

The Petition of London Merchants to Parliament, 11 February 1741 Many London merchants on behalf of others, as well as inhabitants of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, have sent a petition to the House. While the crown & Parliament have been exerting their authority with respect to the Massachusetts & otherContinue Reading

[Anonymous], A Letter to the Merchant in London to Whom is Directed a Printed Letter Relating to the Manufactory Undertaking, 27 February 1740 In response to Dr. Douglass’s letter – it’s amazing the lengths that some will go to to make the Manufacturing scheme to look as bad as possibleContinue Reading

[Dr. William Douglass], A Letter to Merchant in London Concerning a Late Combination in the Province of Massachusetts Bay… to Impose or Force a Private-Currency Called Land-Bank Money, 21 February, 1740 I wish to address the proposal of creating a “Land-Bank” money/currency. The House & the Governor have come outContinue Reading

Response to the Tobacco Act, 1729 We, the representatives of the Colony of Virginia, appreciate the support in the form of stabilizing the Tobacco Farming Industry that the government has provided. Some farmers have suffered as a consequence of the passage of this act, & as a result some membersContinue Reading

Lieutenant-Governor Spotswood and the Internal Regulation of Tobacco, 29 December 1713 I last gave you some of the steps we’ve taken to prevent tobacco fraud. But now we have to talk about why the tobacco industry has been mismanaged. A lot of people are just going into the business toContinue Reading

Thomas Bacon’s Sermon to Negro Slaves, 1743 “Knowing, that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free.” [Ephesians 6:8] Last time we were together, I told you that God made you & all the world around you. GodContinue Reading

[Anthony Benezet], Instructions Regarding Negro Slaves Issued by the Society of Friends in its Monthly Meeting, 1754 It’s been brought up in every yearly meeting – importation & purchase of blacks & other slaves. We keep talking about it & it’s been a defining subject for Quakers. We need toContinue Reading

Remonstrance of John Daniell, John Yerworth, George Heskett, John Scott, and David Brown… Ship Carpenters, 25 January 1744 Many ship builders, carpenters & inhabitants of Charlestown, SC had been able to buy black slaves. They trained those slaves in their trade. As the slaves aged & were no longer ableContinue Reading

A Petition from Inhabitants of Philadelphia, 14 February 1752 A petition has been sent to the House to complain that while the founder of the colony intended to give every inhabitant a share in legislative government that was in the very early days of the colony. Now the colony hasContinue Reading

A Memorial of Several Aggrievances & Oppressions of his Majesty’s Subjects in the Colony of New York in America, 1750 When the enemies of our country brought our country to its knees through Catholic supremacy & arbitrary government, God put our King George on the throne. We hope that thisContinue Reading

Connecticut’s Act to Regulate Abuses & to Correct Disorders in Ecclesiastical Affairs, 1742 The Assembly has made in their act to establish & confirm a confession of faith & an agreement of Church discipline made 1708 by the churches to establish peace & quietness. Unfortunately, a few people have beenContinue Reading

Samuel Davies, Letter to Reverend Doctor Doddridge, 2 October 1750 The Church of England was established in the colony of Virginia from the beginning & there weren’t more than 4 or 5 dissenters within 100 miles until a few years ago. Religion was loose & not very strict in Virginia.Continue Reading

Maryland Toleration Act, 1649 Lord Baltimore addressed the assembly about religious matters in Maryland. Anyone denying that God & Jesus are really the ones in control & pushing those ideas around will be punished by death & have his lands confiscated. Those who speak out against the Virgin Mary, theContinue Reading

Nathaniel Ward – The Simple Cobler of Aggawam in America, 1647 We’ve been getting some unkind press about how we live in New England. People have all kinds of funny ideas about how crazy we are & how fanatical our religious doctrines can be. But if you don’t like theContinue Reading

Roger Williams – The Bloody Tenent, Yet More Bloody, 1650 I have to declare before God, angels & men that the tenet of persecution for the cause of conscience to a terrible thing. It is blasphemous against the God of Peace who made all mankind of one blood to dwellContinue Reading