p. 988 JOINT
PALLISER TO SECRETARY OF ADMIRALTY,
RELATING TO FISHERY ON COAST OF LABRADOR, ETC.
COL. COR. NEWFLD. VOL. 2.
Copy of a Letter from Commodore Pallisser, Commander in Chief of His Majesty's Ships and Vessels at Newfoundland, to Mr Stephens, Secretary of the Admiralty, dated on board His Majesty's Ship the Guernsey in St. Johns Harbour the 25th August 1766.
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When the King's Ships arrived on their Stations this Year upon the Coast of Labradore, they found between Two and Three Hundred Whaling Vessels from the Plantations, great part of which were employed fishing for Cod and carrying it over to the French Ships in Newfoundland; also destroying the fishing Works belonging to English Fishers; firing the Woods, and doing every kind of mischief to prevent and discourage English Adventurers from going to that Coast; also in hunting and plundering the poor Indians on that Coast. The King's Officers immediately put a stop to all this, and sent them away a Whaling, then our new Ship Adventurers from Britain under this protection went to work, and have succeeded beyond expectation, taking amazing Quantities of Cod, but they were too late this Year for the Whale.
The Block House ordered to be built in Labradore could not (because of my late arrival) be executed this Season on the Plan proposed, but a very sufficient one of Timber shall be completed in Pitts Harbour, in which I propose to leave an Officer with a Guard of Twenty Men to secure the Boats, Craft and fishing Utensils of the British fishing Ships from being stole or destroyed by the Indians, or by the far more mischievious plundering Crews from the Plantations.
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Since writing the foregoing, I have had farther Advices from the Northern Parts of this Island, by which I find the Fishery there has proved very bad to both English and French, but our People have found a noble resource at Labradore, which makes their Voyages good, whilst the French are all exceeding bad.—An effectual stop being put to our People trafficking with the French there, has occasioned many to leave the Coast very early for want of Bread, being disappointed of Supplies from New England, one of their Agents has been here to sollicit me for leave to purchase a Supply for Four of their Ships, but I have not granted him a Biscuit; our People begin to see their folly in dealing with them by which they were enabled to pursue the Fishery to their own prejudice, and now begin to carry on the Fishery in those Parts with proper Spirit.
Endorsed. In the Lords of the Admty's of the 29th Septr 1766.