The Labrador Boundary

Privy Council Documents

Volume IV



Mar. 18

p. 1717                                         C

No. 711.




        39.  Articles of Grievances mentioned in the petition of the Western ports, touching those of the plantation of Newfoundland. The planters have put sundry of the petitioners from the chiefest places of fishing; great quantities of their provisions have been appropriated; they have been prevented from taking birds, which are used for bait; fees have been exacted from them; and pirates harboured to their great prejudice. (On 19 Oct. 1618, the Earl of Bath incloses a petition of the merchants of Devon (wanting) to the Privy Council, concerning some hard measures offered them in their fishing at Newfoundland, by those of the late plantation there, which he recommend to their favourable consideration, and that the merchants may be secured from further disturbance in the enjoyment of their privileges. DOMESTIC Corresp. Jac. I., Vol. CIII., No. 43, Cal. p. 586.

        40.  Answer of the Company of the Plantation of Newfoundland to 1618 the article of grievances of the Western ports. Conceive that their chargeable Dec. maintenance of a colony entitle the inhabitants to choose their fishing places. Know of no wrongs done to the fishermen. If taking of birds has been denied, it shall be ordered to the contrary. Utterly disclaim the exaction of fees. Complain that the very great damages they have received by pirates have almost overthrown the colony. Are desirous to join with the western men in that business, and for keeping good order in the country. Inclose certain orders, which have been published in the King's name. Signed by John, Slany, Treasurer, Hump. Handforde, Hump. Slany, Robt. Gairard, Wm. Paine and Wm. Freeman. Annexed,


       40.  1. Proclamation by John Guy, Governor of Newfoundland, against abuses and bad customs, by persons who use the trade of fishing in those parts. Cooper's Cove, 1611, Aug. 13. (Copy.)

p. 1718

        41.  Reply of the Petitioners (of the Western ports) to the answer of the Governors of Newfoundland plantation. No privilege given by the charter to planters for fishing before others; if choice of places is admitted contrary to common usage, the petitioners contend that they ought rather to have it. Desire that the liberties reserved to them by charter may be confirmed. Disclaim committing any abuses in the country, and request that the offenders may be examined. The petitioners, knowing better how to manage the fishing than the planters can direct, declare that they are altogether unwilling to be ordered by the planters, or to join with them as they desire.  Annexed,


      41.  1. Extract of the Patent, (to Henry Earl of Northampton, Sir Fran. Bacon, and others, for the colony or plantation in Newfoundland, from 46 to 52 deg. Nor. lat., together with the seas and islands lying within ten leagues of the coast), reserving to all manner of persons of what nation soever, as well as the English, the right of trade, and fishing in “the parts aforesaid.” Westminster, May 2, 1610. (Copy.)

        49.  The Privy Council to the Mayors of sea-port towns in the west. To give directions to the masters of vessels bound to Newfoundland for the fishing voyage to forbear from all acts of hostility, and from such other disorders as have been heretofore committed; and also to entertain friendly correspondence with those of the plantation. (Circular copy.)



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