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Bradstreet, Simon (d. 1697) to Robert Livingston re: current affairs of New York Colony

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC03107.00186 Author/Creator: Bradstreet, Simon (d. 1697) Place Written: Boston, Massachusetts Type: Letter signed Date: 1690/03/25 Pagination: 3p. + docket 31.4 x 19.9 cm

Summary of Content: Massachusetts Colony writes declaring that while they understand and sympathize with the situation in New York, the men from Albany should "unite and form against the Common Enemy," namely the French and Indians. Volunteering to mediate between the two factions, Massachusetts cannot allow itself to sway from its course of an upcoming "Naval Expedition against the French of Nova Scotia and L'Acadie." Proposing of a meeting of representatives of the several colonies to discuss manners of dealing with the threat of the French, Massachusetts also requests that Albany converse and renew ties of allegiance with the Iroquois. Finally, condolences for the massacre at Schenectady are transmitted, along with a last call for the cessation of "all further animosity."

Full Transcript: Boston, [Mass.] 25 March 1690
Hono[rable] Gent[leman]
Yo[urs] by the hand of [mr.] Livingston [illegible] before us. We have also had consideration of the Memoriall presentd by the said ...Gent[lema]n wherein they represent the present dangerous State and Condition of Albany which we perceive to be principally occasioned by the unhappy dissentions and contests arising among your Selves and disatisfaction with the [present] Government of New yorke who expect you should be Subject to Orders from thence as being alwaies an Appendix to that province, Whatever your Sentiments or Apprehensions may be concerning the Governmt of Yorke (Altho. we have not been made acquainted with his Ma[jesties] particular [Comands] to you) yet we are of Opinion considering the present conjuncture of Affaires it wil be most conduceing to their Ma[jesties] Interest that there be rather a concession on your parts than by maintaining contention to be out of a capacity of Securing your Selves and resisting the common Enemy thereby Endangering the whole and the falling off of the Maquas and other Nations of Indians now Engaged with us (when they take notice of our divisions) to take part with the Enemy who doubtless are not wanting in their unwearied Sollicitations and restless Endeavours by all imaginable cunning to draw them to their side which if they obtain will prove very pernicious to their Ma[jes]ties Interest in all these Colonys. What measures have been taken by the Gent[lemen] of New Yorke with reference unto your Selves that you apprehend to be hard or unreasonable. We thinke it most advisable that you await a Setlement from England for your Satisfaction and redress thereof Now that there be a present accommodation and composure of all differences and laying aside animosities on Either side that so you may unite and combine against the Comon Enemy where to we are willing to contribute what Assistance we are capable of and to Endeavour a Mediation between you. We have written unto Lt. Gov[ernor] Liesler intreating him to use all moderation and hope he wil be persuaded thereto and take no such measures as may be justly provokeing unto your Selves. It would heartily rejoyce us to hear that there is a good understanding betwixt him and your Selves. [2]
The Proposals offered by Mr Livingston and the other Gentlemen as to the Supplys of men provisions and moneys from this Colony we are in no present capacity of granting being Infested by the Enemy upon our own Towns and Planta[tions] Eastward & Northward and are seting forward a Navall Expedition against the French of Nova Scotia and L'Acadie which will draw forth considerable of our Forces Besides the preparations necessarily called for to our own defence against the Attack of the French by Sea. If it shall please God to Succeed this [illegible] Expedition wee shal be Encouraged forthwith to bend our fforce against Canada the necessity whereof (if judged feasable) we are alike Sensible with your Selves To which End we have proposed to desire a meeting of Comission from the severall Governments to consult and advise thereof and shall speedily notify all our neighbours of our motions thereto that so there may be a joint concurrence and assistance, And a good appearance provided both of Christians and Indians to disrest and annoy the Enemy by Law through the Country whilst [our] fforces by Sea do Attack you at Quebeck. We desire you would Acquaint the Maquas of our [illegible] Expedition against the ffrench and Endeavour by all meanes to hold them & the other Nations firme to their promises and assurances lately given of the fidelity and Assistance of the English in prosecuting the Enemy. We have written as Effectually as we can to Stir up our neighbours and Confederates of Connecticutt to yield their Succors and Assistance to Albany (which without a composure of your differences and better understanding betwixt New Yorke your Selves and them we cannot Expect wil be attended) and to send some fforces from thence to joyne the Indians in prosecution of the comon Enemy. We perceive by what hath occurred to our view of a Declaration put forth in the name of the Lt. Governor and Councill [illegible] of N. Yorke the Gentlemen of Connecticut have been misrepresented there withal which was intended both by themselves and [illegible] as a service to their Ma[jes]ty and for the common Safety in Sending Cap[tain] Wm. Bull with his Company to Enforce and Strengthen the Garrison at Albany; which we [3] cann [text damaged] they must needs highly resent to be so Entreated for their good will; But hope it will not discourage from duty and intending the good of the whole.
We heartily condole the awfull desolation lately made at Schenectady which is accompanyed with the more sorrowfull aggrevation that it was chiefly occasioned thro. their own carelessness and want of vigilance the like whereof hath hapned at Salmon Falls a Plant[ation] in the province of Maine, the Enemy being ffrench and Indians Surprising of them, there being not so much as one man attending duty upon the watch, and killed and carried captive about Seventy nine perons. May these instances be warnings to us to [the] more vigilance And Stir up all their Ma[jesties] Subjects in every place of the Country unto a hearty union for their own Security and Engagement against the treacherous & barbarous Enemy. We do again refresh our advise unto you that you cease all farther animosity and contentions and comply with what may be reasonably desired and Expected in [such] mission to the present Government that so wee may all be Vis Unita [Fortios]. Comending you to the Protection of the Almighty Subscribs.
Gent[leme]n Your assured ffriends and Servants The Governm[en]t and Council of the Massachusetts Bay
Signed
Sim[on] Bradstreet
Directed to Peter Schuyler Esq. Major Derick Wesselly Esq. Recorder And Aldermen of Albany These Present.
Copy of a Letter from the Gov[ernor] Councill directed as above and delivered to Mr. Robt. Livingston for convayance which contains an Answer to the Memoriall delivered by mr Livingston []
Jsa: Addinton Sec[retar]y
[Docket]
Boston 28 of march 1690 The Govr & Councills answer to the Memorial Deliverd them by Robt Livingston Capt Gerrit Tounise agents [text damaged] the Convention of Albany

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People: Bradstreet, Simon, d. 1697
Livingston, Robert, 1654-1728

Historical Era: Colonization and Settlement, 1585-1763

Subjects: American Indian HistoryMassacreMilitary HistoryMilitiaFranceGlobal History and US Foreign PolicyGlobal History and US Foreign PolicyNavyCanadaGovernment and CivicsDiplomacy

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