THE TRINIDAD HISTORICAL SOCIETY.
Publication No. 42.
Letter from Sir Jonathan Atkins, Governor of Barbados, to the Lord
Commissioner of Trade and Plantations.
6th December, 1676, from Barbados.
Source :--Public Record Office. State Papers Colon ial, C.O. 38.
Published by the courtesy of the Master of the Rolls and
the Deputy Keeper of the Public Records.
MAY IT PLEASE YOUR LORDSHIP :
Since my last to you, little of wonderment in this place
hath happened to acquaint you with but My Lord the rumour
of differences with the French which come by letter from
England lodges us under some apprehension for we are like
to gain nothing by such dispute. But it hath this good effect,
to quicken us to look to our sufficiency which I am vigorously
prosecuting and putting us into such a posture as shall be able
to discount all accidents and hope to give His Majesty a good
account of ourselves and this place ; I would I could say as
much for the Leeward Islands whose weakness will I believe
make them obvious to their stronger neighbours and bring a
neighbourhood to us which I could be content to be without.
I wrote to Your Lordship in my last that the Dutch had a
squadron of ships in these parts who have roamed up and
down these seas this six months. In their coming hither, they
took Cayan (Cayenne) and Marie Galante, two small Islands
very inconsiderable, in the possession of the French ; all the
negroes they took upon them, they have transported to
Tobago where they are fortifying i nd settling a Colony but
I doubt their stay will not be long there for two several ships
that came from the Western Islands (Azores) met there
twelve frigates belonging to the King of France bound for
these parts who were to join with five frigates more that were
here before under the command of Monsieur Gravely. i
The Captains of both ships were aboard the Admiral by
whom they were civilly treated only enquiring of them after
the Dutch but they could give no account of them.
I am not much pleased with a vicinity of such strength at
sea when in the meantime there is never a frigate of the King's
in all these parts nor have I so much as a boat allowed me to
send out at any time for intelligence. I hope Your Lordship
will consider of it and at least give me timely notice of
His Majesty's intention for war or peace.
I shall give Your Lordship no further trouble but upon
all occasions shall further address myself as becomes
Your Lordship's most humble servant,