Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

H

DETAIL OF THE PATENT OF BEAUCHAMP

AND LEVERETT.

1629, March 13th. - The Grant or Patent was made by the Council of Plymouth, in England, to Beauchamp and Leverett, signed Robert Warwick. This describes all the land lying between Muscongus on the south, or southwest, and a straight line extending from thence ten leagues up into the main land, and ten leagues on the north and northeast of a river called Penobscot, &c.

1694, May 9th. Madokawando, Sagamore of Penobscot, sold to Sir William Phipps part of the lands included in the grant made by the Council of Plymouth to Beauchamp and Leverett.

1719, August 13th. - Spencer Phipps, Sir William's heir, conveyed the Indian title and grant to John Leverett, Esq., the late President, and heir to the aforesaid Thomas Leverett, which Thomas, on the demise of Beauchamp, by survivorship, became by law possessed of the whole grant; and the said John Leverett, on the 14th of August, 1719, admitted Cooke and others, so as to make ten owners, which are denominated the Ten (original owners or) proprietors. The same year, the original ten admitted twenty other partners, viz. Jahleel Brenton and others, called the Twenty Associates, who were to settle two townships and build two saw-mills for the Company. They immediately proceeded to make the settlements, and break up and cultivate as much land as would accommodate a sufficient number of families for the said two townships; and, in order to secure their intended settlements against the incursions of the Indians, built and furnished two large block-houses, with a covered way to the water

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

side. The Associates also built a double saw-mill, bought
a sloop, and hired others, to transport people and their
effects, and maintained a garrison, furnished with great
and small artillery. In 1722, the Indians surprised, took,
and burned one of the sloops, and attacked the block-
houses, in which they were defeated by the garrison ; but
the Associates were great sufferers, the Indians having
taken seven, burnt their saw-mills, a large sloop, and
sundry houses. The block-houses were well defended
against a siege; and in the course of twelve days' siege,
laid by the Indians, twenty of the enemy were killed.
The government having declared war against the Indians,
Mr. Leverett, in behalf of himself and the other Associates,
by a memorial in August, 1722, made a tender of the use
of the block-houses to the government during the war.
This checked the progress of the settlements.
After the close of this war, the Associates, being resolved
to bring forward and finish their settlements, were pro-
ceeding to settle and improve the said lands with vigor, and
had got a minister and a hundred and twenty families ready
to go and settle, when another interruption took place.
One David Dunbar, his then Majesty's Surveyor-General of
the Woods, claimed a quitrent for the King, upon which
the thirty partners agreed with Brigadier Waldo to go to
England for the purpose of getting the said Dunbar re-
moved; for which services, and at his own expense,
he was to have one half of the patent, — which he
accomplished, and Dunbar was removed. There then re-
mained by computation 300,000 acres belonging to the
thirty. In 1734, Waldo entered into an indented agree-
ment with the Twenty Associates to complete the settle-
ments for one half of their proportion, which was 200,000
acres. This would leave the Twenty Associates 100,000
acres, which 100,000 acres he was to set off to them, their
heirs and assigns, wherever the Twenty Associates should
make their pitch, to be 5% miles on the sea, and about 30
miles into the country, so as to include the quantity of
100,000 acres, 2,000 of which was to be in islands.
This same year his Excellency, Governor Belcher, issued a
proclamation notifying all persons that the proprietors
were about making a regular survey of their lands.

[ocr errors]

228 Detail of the Patent of Beauchamp and Leverett.

1738. — Isaac Little, Esq. was appointed to go to the land and explore the same, and report where would be the best place to make the pitch.

The proprietors, however, did not then agree where to make their pitch, but it was postponed from time to time; and in the year 1759 (in May) Brigadier Waldo died suddenly, without the contract being fulfilled. The business continued unfinished from year to year, until the year 1766, when one of the original Twenty Associates, viz. John Jeffries, and the heirs of others, by petition to John Cushing, Esq., a justice of the peace through the Commonwealth, obtained a warrant to call a meeting of the proprietors, to be held on the 6th of September, 1766 ; when they met, and sixteen of the original twenty were represented. After being organized, a committee was chosen to confer with the heirs of Brigadier Waldo respecting the 100,000 acres belonging to the proprietary, and report. They reported that the said heirs had agreed that the land should be set off; and the committee, viz. Hon. Benjamin Lynde, James Bowdoin, Robert Treat Paine, Esqrs., Henry Liddle, and Nathaniel Appleton, were fully authorized and empowered to execute deeds of indenture with the said heirs of Waldo, which was accordingly done on the 7th of April, 1768. And from this date the proprietary called the Twenty Associates held the land and islands described in the deeds of severance then made between the Twenty Associates and Brigadier Waldo's heirs.

The proprietary, under the name of “the Twenty Associates of the Lincolnshire Company," proceeded to lay out and settle their lands, and gave the name of Cambden to the first township; and the proprietors, by proposals issued for that purpose, gave great encouragement to settlers. David Fales, Esq. was employed to survey the sea-coast, and laid out a great part of the township into lots, a considerable part whereof was appropriated for settlers, who were admitted by petitioning to the clerk, and being first approved, and entering into contract, under hand and seal, to fulfil the conditions of settlement. The proprietors proceeded from year to year to encourage and place settlers upon their lands, until the interruption occasioned by the war with Great Britain in 1775. Upon peace

taking place, they resumed their plan, and in 1785 they recommenced the settling of another, now flourishing township, by the name of Hope, upon the most liberal terms. The depositions of David Fales, Esq. and Robert Thorndike, and the testimony of James Malcom, Esq., and others who assisted in laying out Camden in 1768, if necessary, can be adduced to prove the actual seizure and possession after severance of the land, which was before held in common. It was not until the year 1773 that the ten proprietors had their parts set off by Waldo's heirs; and instead of 100,000 acres, they accepted 90,100 acres in one entire tract, which is described in the deed of severance between them. So that the Twenty Associates held 100,000 acres, the ten proprietors 90,100 acres, and Waldo's heirs the residue, which left them about 400,000 acres, no part of which large tract or patent was ever claimed or disputed by any persons, corporation, or government, from the date of the patent, 1629, to the present time, 1808; and, of course, the proprietors have been in full possession upwards of one hundred and seventy-nine years. In the year 1783, October 28, a resolve passed the General Court, for all persons holding or claiming large tracts of land, to describe the boundaries, &c., and lodge the same in the Secretary's office, in order that it might be known what land the Commonwealth had. An expression in the patent relative to the northeastern bounds rendering it uncertain whether it was intended to run easterly of Penobscot River or not, this made it necessary for the parties to ascertain the quantity by certain described lands; and it was finally resolved that the patentees should be confirmed in a quantity of land equal to thirty miles square, and if the lines described should not contain that quantity, that then any deficiency arising should be made up ; and by two resolves of the 9th and 16th of February, 1798, a further confirmation of said quantity was made, and what land should be appropriated to make up for the deficiency. Before the Twenty Associates' lands were laid out into townships and plantations, the Legislature taxed the proprietary called the Twenty AsSociates for a number of years for what they held, the ten proprietors for theirs, and Waldo's heirs for the residue.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

Instructions to be observed by Major Robart Sedgwicke,

commander of the Blacke Raven, and Captaine John Leverett whoe is joined with him for the carrying one the service herein required.

You are to take under your care and direction for this present expedition, and according to the Instructions following, the ships Black Raven, Hope, Church, and Augustine now in the River of Thames and at Portsmouth, and direct your course either to the Mattachusetts Bay in New England, or to Pequot harbor, New Haven, or other good port within any of those United Collonyes as providence shall order the winde and occurrencies most condeucing to the furtherance of the present designe.

Upon your arivall (through the blessing of the Lord) in any of the aforesaid harbor, you are imediately to deliver or send away the letters committed to you and directed to the severall Governors of the Collonyes of the Mattachusetts, Plymoth, Connecticott and New Haven, with intumation to them from yourselfes of your arivall & expectation of a suddayne Answer to the contents of the said letters.

If upon retorn from them, you fynde an inclination and readinys in them to joyne in the present undertakeing for vindicateing the English Right, and extirpateing the Dutch, and that such Numbers of men out of all or some of the Collonges the determination whereof must be left to your owne wisdome with the advice of others to be im

« AnteriorContinuar »