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1611, August 13—ORDERS ISSUED BY JOHN GUY, GOVERNOR OF NEWFOUNDLAND.¹
Certain orders for the Fishermen to observe and keep in the Newfoundland published the thirteenth day of August, 1611, by Mr. John Guy, then Governor of the Colony there.
Whereas by authority of our sovereign Lord James, by the grace of God of England, Scotland, France, Ireland and Newfoundland King, a plantation and government is begun to be settled within this country of Newfoundland, And whereas among those persons that use the trade of fishing in these parts, many disorders, abuses and bad customs are crept in which are continued and yearly practised more of a corrupt usage than of malicious designs, forasmuch as it concerneth not only the benefit and profit of the trade of fishing, but also the public behoof and good, if all such grievances should be stopped, to the end that all persons should reform themselves in their proceedings and not plead ignorance that any prohibition was made, The now Governor of the said country in our said Sovereign Lord the King's name doth straightly charge and command all persons of what nation soever, that shall frequent those parts to exercise the trade of fishing, as well strangers as subjects to our said sovereign Lord the King, that they offend not in any thing forbidden by virtue of this proclamation, under the penalties herein specified, and as they will answer to the contrary at their perils. Dated in Cupers Cove the 13th day of August Anno Regni Regis Jacobi Nono 1611.
First that no ballast, press stones or any thing else hurtful to the harbours be thrown out to the prejudice of the said harbours, but that it be carried ashore and laid where it may not do any annoyance under the pain of five pounds for every offence.
Item that no person destroy deface or any way work any spoil or detriment to any stage, cook room, flakes, spikes, nails or any thing else that belongeth to the said stages whatsoever but that only he or they content themsves with such stage or stages as shall be needful for them and to repair them with timber to be fetched out of the woods and not with the taking down of other stages under the pain of ten pounds for every offence.
That every Admiral of each harbour for the time being rescue only so much beech and flakes or both as is needful for the number of boats, that he
¹ “Reprinted from App. to British Case, North Atlantic Coast Fisheries Arbitration at the Hague, p. 689.”
shall use with an overplus, only for one boat more than he hath, and that every person coming after, content himself with what he shall have necessary use for, without keeping or detaining any more to the prejudice of others next coming, under the pain of ten pounds, besides satisfaction to be made to the party next coming, that is injured thereby.
That no person cut out deface or any way alter or change the marks of any boats under the pain of five pounds for every offence.
That no person convert to his own use the boats belonging to others without their consent neither take them from the places where they be left by the owners, except in case of necessity, and then to give notice thereof to the Admiral of the harbour, and others, that the right owner may know what is become of them, under the pain of five pounds, for every offence, besides satisfaction to the party grieved.
That no person set fire in any of the woods of this country under the pain of ten pounds for every offence.
That no person at the end of the voyage destroy the stage, cook-room or flakes that he hath that year formerly used under the pain of ten pounds for every offence.
That no master of any ship do hereafter receive into his ship or custody any person or persons whatsoever, being of the Colony that are there already planted, or hereafter to be planted, by virtue of his Majesty's letters patents under his great seal of England without special warrant under the handwriting of the Governor of the said Colony or Colonies in the Newfoundland aforesaid, and that every Master of any ship which shall so offend shall¹
¹ The rest is wanting.