ORDER-IN-COUNCIL GRANTING LAND TO MORAVIANS AT ESQUIMAUX BAY.
C.O. RECORDS 194/18, p. 285.
See also GREENWICH HOSPITAL MISCELLANEA VARIOUS. Vol. 121, p. 72.
At the Court of St. James,
The 3rd day of May, 1769.
WHEREAS there was this day read at the Board a Report from the Right Honorable the Lords of the Committee of Council for Plantation Affairs; Dated the 24th of last month, in the words following, viz:—
“Your Majesty having been pleased by Your Order in Council of the 20th February last to refer unto this Committee a Representation from the Lords Commissioners for Trade and Plantations setting forth that they have had under their consideration a memorial presented by the Earl of Hillsborough, one of Your Majesty's Principal Secretaries of State, On behalf of the Society of Unitas Fratrum, stating, That the said Society are desirous of prosecuting their intention of establishing a Mission on the Northern Coast of Labrador for the purpose of civilizing and instructing the Savages called Esquimaux, inhabiting that Coast, in which undertaking the Memorialists represent that they have already taken some steps in consequence of encouragement received from the Board in 1765; but that there is a necessity of having permission to occupy such a quantity of land on that Continent as may induce the Esquimaux to settle around the Missionaries; that for this purpose they have pitched upon Esquimaux Bay and praying for a grant on that spot of one hundred thousand acres of land, or about twelve miles square; with liberty in common of other British subjects of fishing and trading on that Coast, submitting at the same time the expediency of the Government erecting a blockhouse near the said intended settlement to protect the Esquimaux and their Missionaries from violences and encroachments of any disorderly people who might happen to come into that Bay.
WHEREUPON the said Lords Commissioners represent that in the yea 1765 the Society above mentioned having with the approbation of the Government deputed four of their brethren to visit and explore the Coast of Labrador with a view to propagate the Gospel among the savage inhabi-
tants; those persons though unavoidably prevented from completing their design in its full extent did however by the assistance and under the direction of Mr. Palliser Your Majesty's Governor of Newfoundland make some progress in the laudable purpose of their mission by establishing an intercourse and concluding a treaty with those savages. Whereupon in the year following upon the favourable report made by Your Majesty's said Governor touching the conduct and behaviour of these said Missionaries and in consequence of a petition from the said Society, the Board of Trade did in an humble representation to Your Majesty dated March 27th 1766, submit whether it might not be adviseable to allow this Society to occupy such a district of land not exceeding one hundred thousand acres upon the Coast of Labrador as they should think best situated for the purposes of their Mission from this opinion of their predecessors in office they see no reason to dissent and as they do in like manner with them think it advisable to encourage and promote a settlement of this sort as well from the pious and laudable object of its institution as from the public and commercial advantage to be derived from it they beg leave humbly to recommend to Your Majesty that the Society or the persons deputed by the Society for that purpose may be allowed by an order of Your Majesty in Council to occupy and possess during Your Majesty's pleasure one hundred thousand acres of land in such part of Esquimaux Bay on the Coast of Labrador as they shall find most suitable to their purpose and that Your Majesty's Governor of Newfoundland may be directed by the said Order to give them all reasonable assistance and support in forming such establishment and by a Proclamation to be published in Your Majesty's name signifying that this establishment is formed under Your Majesty's express authority and direction to Warn all persons from molesting and disturbing the said settlers; and in case it shall appear to him to be necessary for their welfare and security that one or more of the principal Missionaries shall be vested with the authority of Justice of the Peace that he should in that case issue the proper commission for that purpose conformable to the powers delegated to him by Your Majesty's Commission under the Great Seal, with respect to the expediency of erecting a blockhouse near the said intended settlement for the defence of the Esquimaux and the Missionaries and for the general protection of the British Trade and Fishery they do not think themselves justified in advising Your Majesty to comply a request that would probably be attended with considerable public expense and for which there does not appear to them to be any immediate necessity; but as they think it highly proper that reasonable and necessary measures should be taken for the security of those persons who shall establish themselves on this savage and uncivilized Coast they would humbly recommend to Your Majesty to direct that the persons who shall engage in this settlement shall be furnished out of Your Majesty's Stores with fifty muskets and a proportionable quantity of ammunition which they conceive may be sufficient for their personal security and defence. The Lords of the Committee in obedience to Your Majesty's said Order of reference this day took the said representation into their consideration and
do humbly report to Your Majesty that they agree in opinion With what is above proposed by the Lords Commissioners for Trade and Plantations, and that Your Majesty's Governor of Newfoundland should give them all reasonable assistance and support informing the said Establishment and by a Proclamation to be published in Your Majesty's name.
That it may be adviseable for your Majesty by Your Order in Council, to permit and allow James Hutton of Lindsey House Chelsea Gentleman Benjamin La Trobe of Lindsey House Chelsea Clerk, Charles Metcalfe of Chelsea Gentleman, John Edmonds of St. Andrews Holborn Brewer, Philip Hurlock of St. Pauls Church Yard Surgeon, John Wollin of Lindsey House aforesaid Gentleman, and Jens Haven of Lindsey House aforesaid Catechist, In Trust for the Unitas Fratrum, and its Society for the furtherance of the Gospel, to Occupy and possess during Your Majestys Pleasure, one hundred thousand Acres of Land in such part of Eskimaux Bay on the Coast of Labrador, as they shall find most Suitable to their purpose; and that Your Majestys Governor of Newfoundland should give them all Reasonable Assistance and Support in forming the said Establishment and by a proclamation to be published in Your Majestys Name Signifying that this Establishment is formed under Your Majestys Express Authority and Direction to warn all persons from Molesting and disturbing the said Settlers, and in case it shall appear to him to be necessary for their Welfare and Security that one or more of the principal Missionaries should be vested with the Authority of Justice of the peace, that he should in that case, issue the proper Commission for that purpose, conformable to the powers delegated to him by Your Majestys Commission under the great Seal; and the Lords of the Committee are further of opinion, that it may be adviseable for Your Majesty to direct that the persons who shall Engage in this Settlement, shall be furnished out of Your Majestys Stores with fifty Musquets and a proportionable quantity of Ammunition for their personal Security and Defence.
His Majesty taking the said Report into Consideration was pleased with the advice of his privy Council to approve thereof and accordingly doth hereby permit and allow James Hutton of Lindsey House Chelsea Gentleman, Benjamin La Trobe of Lindsey House Chelsea Clerk, Charles Metcalf of Chelsea Gentleman, John Edmonds of St. Andrews Holborn Brewer, Philip Hurlock of St. Pauls Church Yard Surgeon, John Wollin of Lindsey House aforesaid Gentleman and Jens Haven of Lindsey House, aforesaid Catechist; In Trust for the Unitas Fratrum and its Society for the furtherance of the Gospel to Occupy and possess during His Majestys pleasure one hundred thousand Acres of Land in such part of Eskimaux Bay on the Coast of Labrador as they shall find most Suitable to their purpose. And his Majesty doth hereby further order that the Governor or Commander in Chief of Newfoundland for the Time being do give them all Reasonable Assistance and Support in forming the said Establishment and by a Proclamation to be
published in his Majestys Name Signifying that this Establishment is formed under His Majestys Express Authority and Direction, to warn all persons from molesting and disturbing the said Settlers, And in Case it shall appear to him to be necessary for their Welfare and Security that one or more of the principal Missionaries should be vested with the Authority of Justice of the Peace that the said Governor do in that case issue the proper Commission for that purpose Conformable to the powers delegated to Him by his Majestys Commission under the Great Seal. And the Governor or Commander in Chief of His Majestys Island of Newfoundland and the Territories depending thereon for the Time being and all others whom it may concern are to take Notice and Govern themselves accordingly.