REORGANIZATION AND DISCONTENT. Being possessed of New York . . . you shall by all possible means satisfy the inhabitants, as well natives and strangers as English, that your intention is not to disturb them in their possessions but on the contrary that your coming is for their protection and benefit, for the encouragement of planters and plantations and the improvement of trade and commerce, and for the preservation of religion, justice, and equity amongst you.
IN 1667 by the Treaty of Breda the United Netherlands permitted England to keep American territories of which, saying that they were of right its own, it had forcibly taken possession. In 1674 the Republic, having reconquered these territories, ceded them to England by the Treaty of West minster. All antecedent questions of ownership, of title, were thus obliterated. The rights of the English crown, said its legal advisers, now rested solely upon the Treaty of West minster. Upon this they solidly reposed. France had agreed with Charles I not to interfere with his plantations in New England; in 1670 by the Treaty of Madrid Spain had recog nized the right of Charles II to Jamaica and all his North American possessions; and always after 1674 England's title to New York seemed to all nations as valid as its title to its other colonies.
As the rights of the crown rested only upon the new treaty the Duke of York needed a new proprietary patent.
Major Edmund Andros, a member of a noted royalist family, Seigneur of Saumarez in Guernsey and bailiff of that island, was at this time about thirty-seven years of age. He had been brought up in the household of Charles I where his father held a minor post. While the Stuarts lived in exile he saw military service under Prince Henry of Nassau. After the Restoration he was attached to the suite of Elizabeth of the Palatinate, aunt to Charles II, served in the first of his wars against the Dutch, married a cousin of an influential courtier, Lord Craven, and through him obtained a large grant of land in Carolina. In 1669 he was commissioned a major in Prince Rupert's regiment of dragoons. In 1672 he was sent to Barba does as commander of the English forces there. Thus he had gained a knowledge of the Dutch and French tongues and some colonial as well as much military experience.
His private character was never criticised. As a public figure he is too often remembered as he was painted, with a very black brush, by the New Englanders whom he was set to rule after he ceased to rule New York. In the history of New York he appears as the faithful executive of an arbitrary but by no means tyrannical prince, as a conscientious, very industrious administrator. He was not as quick as Nicolls to understand unfamiliar local conditions and never expressed the same desire to win the affections of his flock; but when he did understand he was careful not to exasperate a flock in which the prevailing mood was discontent. He was not un kindly; if severe when opposed he was ready when obeyed to forgive and to forget. There is nothing to show that his people had any love for him; there is nothing to show that they hated him as, frankly and vociferously, they hated some of their later governors. In fact, it is more difficult to recon struct, from his own writings or those of others, what may be called the private personality of this governor of New York than that of any who preceded or who followed him. The more one reads about him the more impersonal a face he presents. But he may well be remembered with respect as the first governor who suggested that New York might be given an assembly, as the first from England who recognized the value of the friendship of the Five Nations, and as one who had a broad-minded view of his responsibilities which induced him to consider the interests of the other colonies as well as of New York.
The duke had promised Andros £400 a year (at a time when the salary of the governor of Virginia was £1200) and had given him £1300 to equip his troops, to pay current ex penses, and to buy a cargo of goods such, said James, as may be best turned to account in New York by trading there' woollen and linen cloth, shoes and stockings, haberdashery, ironware, tinware, and gunpowder. With the governor had come his wife; Lieutenant Anthony Brockholls, his first coun cillor, appointed to succeed him in case of his death; Philip Carteret, returning as governor of Sir George Carteret's part of New Jersey; Captain John Manning who had surrendered Nev York in the previous year; a chaplain; a collector of customs, the first sent from England to the province; a num ber of new settlers; and a band of one hundred soldiers spe cially recruited and in the pay of the duke, not of the king. As the governor's house in the fort which Lovelace had begun to rebuild was still uninhabitable Andros selected Stuyvesant's former residence on the waterfront.
Andros was an Anglican; Brockholls, like the duke himself but openly, was a Catholic. The Test Act of 1673, applying only to the kingdom proper, did not limit the rights and op portunities of English Catholics elsewhere. The duke could appoint as many as he chose to office in New York, and him self retained his rank as lord high admiral on colonial seas. The chaplain, an Anglican of course, was probably the Rev erend John Gourdon to whom the duke had issued a warrant of appointment in August; but as there is no mention of his identity except in this warrant Charles Wolley, a chaplain sent out four years later, is usually cited as the first Anglican known by name who officiated in New York.
The collector of customs, who was also receiver of the duke's revenues from all other sources, was Captain William Dyre, or Dyer — `an active and ingenious man,' the Council of Trade had said, who had `followed a sea employment' in America for more than twenty years and had held commissions in the royal service both by sea and by land. His father was William Dyer, one of the first founders and long the secretary of Rhode Island Colony. His mother was Mary Dyer the Quakeress who, after being once condemned to death at Boston but reprieved in answer to her son's prayer, was hanged in 1660. Like John Underhill, Dyre had received in 1653 a com mission from Rhode Island to make war upon New Nether land. In 1673, being then in London, he drew up one of the most urgent of the petitions which showed how the duke's lost province might be regained and advised that ' all the people of the Dutch nation' should be expelled. Probably it was the zeal thus displayed that won him his responsible post on Manhattan where, seven years later, he figured as the scapegoat for what the people thought the illegal practices of the government.
In the formal instructions given the new governor with his commission the duke had directed that, unless Englishmen were accused, no one should be molested for having aided the Dutch invaders of New York; Andros was merely to observe sus pected persons ' circumspectly ' and to induce them `by all law ful means' to remove from places where they might be danger ous to other places `as beneficial to themselves.' Greater importance than before was now given to the governor's council. From among the ' most prudent inhabitants' Andros was to form a council of not more than ten members to serve during the duke's pleasure. To other offices he was to appoint, always for a single year only, such persons as by reason of their `abilities and integrity' might be `most acceptable' to the people. He was to keep his soldiers under strictest dis cipline, to permit freedom in conscience and worship to peace able men of any faith, and to administer justice (in the name of the king as had always been prescribed for New York) 'with all possible equality without regard to Dutch or English in their private concerns,' following the Duke's Laws except in cases of `emergent necessities' or inconveniences when, with the advice of his councillors and other reputable inhabitants, he might make new laws subject to confirmation by the duke.
The courts and the internal taxes he was to continue as his predecessors had established them. But it seemed needful, said his instructions, to encourage residents and immigrants by making 'some abatement in the customs.' Therefore a new table of rates had been drawn up to be valid for three years. Only peltry and tobacco were now to pay export duties. Liquors and wines paid specific import duties, and all other goods paid two per cent ad valorem if brought from an English or English-colonial port but ten per cent if brought from a foreign port although this could be done only in Eng lish ships which had touched in England and paid duties there. Goods of every kind, agricultural tools excepted, paid addi tional duties if carried from Manhattan up Hudson's River.
All this was gentle treatment of a province which had shown itself so willing to be rid of its English proprietor. But no degree of gentleness could now reconcile the people to the thought of an arbitrary ruler, no reduction of their taxes to the thought that they were taxed without their own consent.
Immediately Andros formed his council; the minutes of its proceedings begin on October 31, the day when the Dutch evacuated the city. Matthias Nicolls, who, coming from Connecticut, had joined Andros on his ship before the evacua tion, was restored to his old post as secretary of the province. With him at the council board sat Dyre, the collector of cus toms; and from among the `most prudent inhabitants' Andros selected as their colleagues William Dervall, John Lawrence, Frederick Philipse, and Stephanus Van Cortlandt.
Van Cortlandt and Philipse were to be for many years prominent figures in every important happening in New York. Van Cortlandt, born on Manhattan in 1643, the eldest son of the long-conspicuous Oloff Stevensen and of Annetje, a sister of Govert Lockermans, was a prosperous merchant who had held many minor official posts in Dutch and in English times. Philipse, who wrote his own name Vlypse while the Dutch wrote it also Flypzen, Flipsen, and Felypsen and the English Phillips as well as Philipse, was a native of Friesland and the son it is said, of a Bohemian Hussite refugee and an English woman. When burgher-right was established in New Am sterdam in 1657 he figured among the Small Burghers as a carpenter; in 1658 he was employed as such to build a barrack at Esopus ; in 1660, then described as `late the Director's carpenter,' he was permitted to charter one of the West India Company's sloops for a voyage to Virginia. Starting thus as a trader he was soon profitably engaged in traffic with the Indians and, acting as skipper of his own vessels, in coastwise trade. He married a wealthy and energetic widow and rapidly grew into a merchant of such large affairs that Colve's list of the richer burghers of New Orange rated him as the richest of them all. In 1672 he bought a large part of the old Van der Donck patroonship north of the Harlem River; and in 1679 he paid 2250 guilders in real Holland money for a house on the north side of Stone Street, a site now covered by the Produce Exchange. His wife, Margaret Hardenbroek De Vries, was an Indian trader and merchant on her own ac count who often acted as supercargo of her own ships and was one of the two women named among the New York merchants who in 1668 had petitioned King Charles from Holland.
Early in November Andros installed the collector, published the new customs rates, received the submission of the Hudson River settlements, appointed a few officials, and authorized others throughout the province who had served under Love lace to resume their posts provisionally. On November 9 he issued in council a Proclamation Confirming Rights and Privileges which confirmed `all former grants, privileges, and concessions' and all estates legally possessed 'under his Royal Highness before the late Dutch government,' thus tacitly pronouncing the recent confiscations void, and declared that the Duke's Laws should be 'observed and practised . . . as heretofore,' but, on the other hand, confirmed all 'legal judicial proceedings' during the time of the Dutch occupation. On November 16 a Second Proclamation Touching the Con firming of Rights and Properties said that while the governor believed that the first had been generally understood as con forming to the late ' Treaty and Articles of Peace' between the king of England and the States General of the Nether lands, nevertheless, 'to prevent all misconstructions' that might be `pretended,' he now declared that so the aforesaid proclamation was in fact to be understood in each and every particular. These proclamations, it will be noticed, made no reference to New Amsterdam's Articles of Surrender of 1664 — only to the recent Treaty of Westminster.
On November 10 Andros restored the city government to its English form, naming as mayor Secretary Nicolls and as deputy-mayor (a novel official) John Lawrence. The alder men as well as the mayor were now counted among the mem bers of the supreme court or court of assizes. The seal of the province had been recovered. The seal of the city was lost, and although Andros wrote to England for a new one there is no record that he received it.
From this time on the city records were kept wholly in the English tongue. The clerk of the city kept them all but in two sets, separating the minutes of the proceedings of the magistrates when they sat as a common council from those of their proceedings when they formed the mayor's court. The latter still remain unpublished. The Minutes of the Com mon Council down to the month of May, 1776, have recently been printed in eight octavo volumes. They begin with the entries for October, 1675, a year after the arrival of Andros. The few gaps that occur in the records of subsequent years hardly lessen the value of their vivid picture of municipal activity. The accounts of the city were kept in Dutch as late as the year 1682.
Thus Governor Andros carried out his master's pacific policy, showing official favor even to an Englishman, John Lawrence, who had been on friendly terms with the Dutch invaders. If another Englishman, Captain John Manning, suffered because he had surrendered the fort to them, it was not by the governor's motion.
In England the king and the duke had dismissed Manning uncensured, Charles declaring, 'Brother, the ground could not be maintained by so few men.' When Manning returned with Andros to New York Andros selected him, with Governor Carteret and Matthias Nicolls, to conduct his negotiations with Colve. But as William Dervall, who had lost much by Colve's confiscations, soon formally charged the surrender to the 'negligence' of Lovelace and the 'treachery' of Manning, Andros was forced by the tenor of his instructions to order, in January, 1675, that Manning be tried by court-martial. The special court so called may be presumed impartial as, composed of the council and the city magistrates with three military officers, it embraced some of the Dutchmen who had gladly profited by Manning's haste to surrender. It acquitted him of treachery, found him guilty on other charges, including neglect of duty to which he humbly confessed, and decided that he deserved death but, as the king and the duke had not condemned him, merely sentenced him to be dis missed from the service of the crown. His sword was broken over his head in 'the public place before the City Hall,' and he was deprived forever of the right to hold civil or military office. Charles Wolley, the later-coming chaplain, who pub lished in 1701 a book relating to his stay in New York, says that Manning had also been `condemned to an exile' on an island in the East River where Wolley paid him a visit. At all events Manning lived thereafter on this island, which had been given him when Governor Nicolls confiscated the West India Company's property. Passing at his death to his step daughter it was then called by the name of her husband, Blackwell; and it remained in the hands of their descendants until 1828 when the city acquired it as a site for penal and charitable institutions.
Captain John Carr, who had been accused of running away while acting as Manning's envoy to Colve, wrote from Mary land when he heard of Manning's trial, protesting 'by Almighty God' that he had done nothing except by Manning's command. The last order, he said, was to delay the enemy• as long as possible: . . . but they was at the turnpike when I went out of the gate and pressing forward to the gate I was in the middle of them, and I thought it my best way to get from them than to enter with them. This is the greatest crime that God and my own conscience knows I am guilty of.
On the other side of the ocean Colonel Lovelace soon died, under a cloud if not in actual disgrace. Committed to the Tower 'for not having defended' the fort at New York he induced the king to appoint a special board to examine into the facts. Falling 'very ill of a dropsy' he was released under bonds to appear when required. Meanwhile Thomas Delavall was petitioning for his promised salary of £200 a year, not , one penny of which he had received although he had served under Nicolls and Lovelace as the duke's auditor for ten years and had paid £1400 out of his own pocket toward the support of the soldiers in Fort James. He affirmed that Lovelace was in the duke's debt to the amount of £7000, and by the duke's order Andros attached Lovelace's property in New York. Lovelace died before the time appointed for exhibiting his accounts in London — January, 1679. It is possible that if he had lived he would have cleared his name. Without further process of law, apparently, such portions of his prop erty as Andros had recovered escheated to the duke. A part of his Staten Island estate his brother Thomas managed to retain or to regain.
More valuable than this was the Domine's Bouwerie beyond the city wall on Manhattan which Stuyvesant had confirmed to Bogardus's widow, Annetje Jans, and Lovelace had bought from her heirs. Now it was joined to the Duke's Farm (orig inally the West India Company's) which adjoined it on the south. As thus extended the tract was afterwards called the King's Farm, or in the time of Queen Anne the Queen's Farm, and was reserved for the use of the governor in office until, early in the eighteenth century, Trinity Church obtained it. It stretched from a line which is now Fulton Street up along the North River shore to the foot of the modern Christopher Street and along Broadway to Reade Street, an irregular line between these two points forming its northern boundary. The fact that in the sale to Lovelace the rights of one of Anne tje's immediate heirs were not recognized formed the basis of a claim which, sixty-eight years later, her descendants put forth against Trinity Church, starting a contention of which the echoes have not yet died out. In 1677 Andros leased this tract, to-day so extremely valuable, to one Dirck Seicken for twenty years for a yearly rent of sixty bushels of 'good winter wheat.' After the eight, summoned before the governor and coun cil, had again declined to take the oath unconditionally, they explained in petition to the governor that they had wished him to reiterate Governor Nicolls's declaration 'prin cipally in the point of freedom of religion and pressing in time of war,' but that he had refused to meet their 'hope and ex pectation' and moreover, had looked upon them `as mutinous' merely because they had 'the misfortune to have been the first summoned to the council' — thus implying that their fellow citizens felt as they did. Again they asked particularly that they might be assured against the need to take up arms against any of the Dutch nation `acting under the State in case of war,' or else be allowed sufficient time to dispose as far as possible of their estates and to remove with their 'substance and fam ilies . . . free and unmolested' whithersoever might seem good to them, offering to swear to be faithful meanwhile to the government. All their prayers were denied; and the governor issued to the sheriff a warrant for their apprehension as `eight factious persons' who, having `endeavored a dis turbance and rebellion,' were to be brought to the fort and all their books and papers seized. Trouble was looked for : the sheriff was told to take with him a guard of soldiers as well as a constable. After their arrest the eight petitioned the mayor and aldermen to intercede with the governor that they might be relieved from the need to take the oath and to bear arms against Dutchmen. The mayor's court merely
advised that they be released under bonds of £200 each to appear for trial before the next session of the court of assizes; and so the governor decreed.
Then they addressed the States General of the United Netherlands by the hand of Steenwyck, who seems to have been their leader, and in the name of 'The Dutch Nation in New York heretofore called New Netherland.' When, said their petition, Governor Colve surrendered the province to Governor Andros pursuant to Article 6 of the Treaty of West minster, which promised that all captured places in Europe elsewhere should be restored 'in the same state and condition' as before the war, the petitioners believed that they would retain all the rights and privilages they had formerly enjoyed 'principally' by virtue of the capitulation of 1664 which waas also accorded them...by the aforesaid 6th ARticle of the Treaty of Peace' of 1674. But they had been disappointed, Governon Adres laying before them an oath which he had drawn up 'according to his opinion and not ac cording to the aforesaid capitulation.' Furthermore, he had `not only illy received but peremptorily rejected' their humble prayers, denounced them as disturbers of the king's peace, put them under arrest, and ordered them to appear for trial, and, as they were 'for a certainty' informed, had sent one of his officers to England `to denigrate the petitioners . . . to his Royal Majesty.' Wherefore they begged the States General to inform King Charles through their ambassador of the true state of the case, and to urge that the eight under arrest should not be punished for their petitions and that the Dutch nation in New York might be continued in the privileges that were their due. With the petition they enclosed a copy of the Articles of Surrender of 1664 and of Article 6 of the Treaty of Westminster.
Thus the reasons of the burghers for refusing to take the oath appear more clearly than the reasons of Andros for exact ing it. So far as we can read, Andros had not threatened them with ' pressing in time of war' but, wittingly or unwit tingly, he had menaced the other right upon which they laid especial stress — their `freedom in religion.' There had come from England at the time when Andros himself arrived the Reverend Nicolaus Van Rensselaer, youngest son of the first patroon of Rensselaerswyck, and brother of the second patroon, who like his father had remained in Holland, and of Jan Baptist and Jeremias who had successively administered the patroonship. A protégé of the Stuarts, he had followed them from Holland to England at the time of the Restoration. In Holland he had been merely licensed according to the rites of the Reformed church. In England he had been ordained by an Anglican bishop and then had ministered to a Dutch congregation at Westminster and served as lecturer in another church. He brought with him to America a letter from the Duke of York recommending him to Andros for the first `benefice' that might fall vacant at New York or Albany. Without waiting for a vacancy and without consulting the Dutch clergy Andros directed Domine Schaats at Albany to receive Van Rensselaer as a colleague. His only desire, be yond a doubt, was to please the duke. What his Dutch sub jects saw was a violation of the Article which in 1664 had secured to them their liberties ' in divine worship and church discipline.' The Dutch ambassador brought the petition of the eight New Yorkers to the notice of the duke. James merely dis claimed all knowledge that any earlier governor had made any declaration about the Articles of Surrender; but his secretary, Sir John Werden, took the occasion to remind Andros that the duke desired that all persons in New York be treated `with all humanity and gentleness' consistent with `the honor and safety of his government.' It appears from Werden's comments that Andros had written him about `tumultuous meetings of some of the chief of the Dutch in New York,' and probably the governor believed that plans for a revolt underlay the expressed desire to make former rights and privileges secure.
When the eight burghers were arraigned before the court of assizes in October De Peyster at once submitted and took the oath. His associates were then charged with a breach of his Majesty's laws in refusing to swear allegiance and also with a breach of the Navigation Acts — which not only ex cluded foreigners from commerce with the colonies but forbade them to live there as merchants or factors. Perhaps Andros devised this new charge because he feared to arouse the people by prosecuting solely upon political grounds. Or it may give the key to his insistence upon the oath : perhaps he had thought from the beginning, although he had not so explained himself, that, in spite of the fact that the duke's patent au thorized him to govern foreigners as well as British subjects, the Dutchmen of New York must take the oath of allegiance if they wished to enjoy the privileges secured by the Naviga tion Acts to British subjects. At all events neither charge could be refuted. It was proved by the collector of customs, Captain Dyre, that all the accused except De Milt had traded since their commitment; and the jury, composed wholly of Englishmen, found them all . . . guilty of the cause of their commitment. And also of a breach of a statute of the 13th September, 1670, in the 12th year of the reign of King Charles the 2d, wherein no aliens are to trade in any of his Majesty's plantations under the penalty of forfeiture of all their goods and chattels, i to the king, I to the government, and i to the informer. The governor to put the act in execution or to be removed from his government.
Thereupon the court adjudged that as it had been proved that, before the mayor's court and on other occasions, the ac cused had not only declined to take the oath legally tendered them but also `did contradict the taking' thereof to the dis quiet and disturbance of his Majesty's subjects tending to faction or rebellion,' and that, `being aliens,' they had `pre sumed to use divers trades and occupations' contrary to va rious laws enacted to cover such cases, they should `forfeit their goods and chattels to his Majesty accordingly.' They petitioned that the penalty might be mitigated but were curtly ordered to take the oath. Their property was attached; at last they yielded ; their fellow-citizens followed their example; and they were relieved from all punishment. Even Nicholas Bayard was pardoned although he had been ordered under arrest because, said the warrant, `since his trial and judgment' at the recent court of assizes he had disquieted the minds of his Majesty's subjects and disturbed the peace ' by his evil comport and practices.' r / While the trial of the seven burgs was in progress Domine Van Nieuwenhuysen had refused to permit Van Rensselaer, who was temporarily in the city, to perform the rite of baptism in his church, saying that he did not look upon him as a law ful minister or consider lawful his admittance at Albany. When Van Rensselaer asked leave to present his credentials Van Nieuwenhuysen said that no one ordained in the Church of England had the right to administer the sacraments in a Dutch church without the sanction of the classis of Amsterdam. Ordered by the government upon complaint of Van Rensse laer to put his opinions upon this point in writing, he and his consistory defended themselves in a long debate before the governor in council. Given time to amend his opinion, he explained that he had no wish to cast a slight upon the Angli can church but that no one could lawfully officiate in a church of the Dutch communion who had not promised to conform to its practices. This Van Rensselaer then pledged himself in writing to do.
Van Rensselaer had come to Manhattan to urge Andros to appoint him director of Rensselaerswyck in the stead of his brother Jeremias who had recently died. The widow of Jeremias and her brother, Stephanus Van Cortlandt, opposed this plan but compromised by retaining part of the authority themselves. Upon his petition the governor ordered his release, directing Leisler and Milborne to give bonds to show good cause for his arrest. Leisler, refusing, was then imprisoned in his turn. A court composed of the governor, the council, and the Dutch ministers of the city heard the case and referred it back to the Albany authorities. These made peace between Schaats and Van Rensselaer; and the court then ordered Leisler and Milborne to pay all costs as having given 'the first occasion of a differ ence.' A year later Andros felt obliged to depose Van Rens selaer for evil conduct — for his 'bad and offensive life,' as Domine Van Zueren of Breuckelen wrote to Holland.
When recording in his history of the province the incidents of days long antecedent to his own, Smith often went astray; but he may be accepted as a credible witness with regard to that trend of popular sentiment which tradi tion is apt to transmit more faithfully than specific facts. And he says that the `greater part of the people' resented the usage Van Nieuwenhuysen met with at the hands of the governor when he shut Van Rensselaer out of his pulpit, and that the governor referred Van Rensselaer's case back to the Albany authorities because 'he was fearful that a great party would rise up against him.' When, however, Smith adds that Andros was thus `compelled to discontinue his ecclesiastical jurisdiction' he implies intentions on the governor's part which, undoubtedly, the governor had never conceived.
Jacob Leisler, one of the many Protestant Germans who drifted from the Rhine countries into Holland during the middle years of the seventeenth century, was the son of a clergyman driven by persecution from the Palatinate to Frankfort-on-the-Main. A note attached to his name on a list of the West India Company's soldiers, as one of whom he came to New Amsterdam in 1660, shows that he was then in debt even for his musket. But, like Frederick Philipse who in later years was one of his bitter enemies, he soon turned trader and in 1663 married a woman with money — Altye (Elsie) Tymans, a stepdaughter of Govert Lockermans, a niece of Annetje Jans, and the widow of Pieter Van der Veen whose business she carried on after his death. By the year 1669 Leisler was living in one of the best houses in the city, near the one that Governor Stuyvesant had built for himself, and owned several others on the principal streets. He was frequently employed in some minor or transient official capacity; and he stood seventh on Colve's list of the wealthier burghers.
Jacob Milborne, according to the testimony of the many enemies he made in after years, had as a boy been convicted in England of coin-clipping, sent to Barbadoes, and then sold as a bond-servant to a resident of Hartford. Stubborn and disobedient, he had been transferred from master to master until his term expired in 1668 when, at twenty years of age, he came to New York. Here he was employed until 1672 by Thomas Delavall as bookkeeper and business agent, his honesty seeming not to have been called in question. He had a brother who was a conspicuous Anabaptist preacher in Boston, and he himself was a radical in politics if not in re ligion. He left New York in 1677 some two years after the trouble about Domine Van Rensselaer. Returning in 1678 he was arrested by order of Governor Andros upon a warrant which said that he had `presumed to clamor' and to write `scurrilously' against the government of the province and the magistracy of the city, ' particularly at his going off in Novem ber, 1677, and afore and since,' and had not explained him self when examined with regard to his reasons for returning a thing that every new-comer was required to do. Although he was kept in confinement only a single day and soon after wards betook himself to London, he did not forget. When Andros, relieved of the governorship, also found himself in London in 1681, Milborne sued him for false imprisonment and obtained damages to the amount of £45. This incident is forgotten when it is sometimes said that of all the many governors of the Thirteen Colonies only two, Bellomont of New York and Phips of Massachusetts, were ever sued in England for acts committed in America.
No other serious disturbance occurred during the adminis tration of Governor Andrros, but from time to time individuals at New York and elsewhere and town officials on Long island provoked arresty by so-called seditious or riotous acts or words.
Andros understood the cause of the general discontent that thus revealed itself. It was not the sovereignty of the king of England; it was the arbitrary government of the Duke of York. Twice in autograph letters — dated in April, 1675, when the eight burghers had just refused to take the oath, and in the following January—the duke referred to certain things which Andros had written him about the establishment of an assembly. In the first letter he said that the governor had done well to discourage talk of such an innovation `which the people there seem desirous of in imitation of their neighbor colonies'; it was inconsistent with the existing form of govern ment, and it was needless for the redress of grievances as the court of assizes contained `the same persons as justices' whom the people would probably choose had they the power. In the second letter, which implied that Andros had actually advised the change, James said that it seemed to him a danger ous idea, assemblies being apt to assume privileges which disturbed or destroyed the governments that permitted them; nevertheless he would be `ready to consider' the governor's proposals should he persist in his opinions.
While New York had every reason to think itself entitled to an assembly, each of its mainland neighbors already enjoy ing the privilege and likewise Jamaica, Bermuda, and the Leeward Islands, the duke had some reason to fear its estab lishment. He felt that he was governing his people gently; he knew of the defiant attitude of Massachusetts; he knew of the disorders that had distracted New Jersey before the Dutch reoccupation; and he knew of those which at the moment were rending Virginia, culminating during the summer of 1676 in the revolt, called Bacon's Rebellion, which was pro yoked not by antagonism to the mother-country but partly by a discouraging industrial outlook, partly by dissensions between the governor and the assembly which imminent danger from the Indians brought to the exploding point. Moreover, the right to an elected assembly was not recognized in England as one of the indisputable rights that Englishmen carried abroad with them. It was not thought that the existence of a parliament in England, in Scotland, or even in Ireland where nevertheless the power of the English parlia ment was paramount, gave legal warrant for the establish ment of colonial legislatures. This is shown by the fact that the charters of most of the colonies specially provided for their erection. That men, however gently governed, might insist upon having an assembly for the sake of assuring their future or simply for the sake of feeling themselves free, was a fact imperceptible to James Stuart.
Long ere this James must have understood that he would never get from his province what had been prophesied to him in 1664 — a revenue of £30,000 a year. But he still expected something and was getting less than nothing. When the frigates which had brought Andros to New York returned to England in the spring of 1675, James received payment for a cargo of 'timber and planks' to be used in the royal navy yard. Nevertheless, he said, he was more than two thousand pounds out of pocket for the expense of recovering his prov ince. Nor had he secured the whole of it. New Jersey had managed to escape him. Massachusetts, said Andros, was claiming 'to Albany itself.' John Winthrop, now near his death and no longer acting as governor of Connecticut, sent Andros the news. Early in July Andros answered that because of the Indian danger he was hastening his coming to those parts `to take such resolutions' as might seem fitting 'upon this extraordinary occasion.' Connecticut did not want and would not take his aid. Dreading the Duke of York more than the Indians, the council of war recalled, to garrison Saybrook at the mouth of the river, a company of soldiers that it had sent toward Plymouth. The general court ordered the authorities at Saybrook to forbid Andros to land, counselled him not to molest the king's subjects, and in a formal protest denounced him as a disturber of the king's peace. Coming with three sloops and some soldiers Andros landed without opposition. An offer of the authorities to treat with him he refused, ordering that the duke's patent and his own commission be publicly read and saying that he would then depart unless asked to remain. The reply was a public read ing of the protest of Connecticut which Andros denounced as a slander and a poor return for his proffered kindness. Satisfied for the moment with his assertion of the duke's authority, and fearing that the Indian war might spread be yond the borders of New England, he set sail for the eastern end of Long Island and as he departed exchanged salutes with the Saybrook fort.
By October the Indians were raiding and burning in New England from the Pemaquid district at the east to the upper valley of the Connecticut at the west. Andros sent word to Hartford that a savage who professed friendship had warned him that this town would be attacked. As the Senecas, the powerful western nation of the Iroquois, were attacking their old enemies the Susquehannas on the borders of Maryland, he wrote to the governor that he had engaged both Senecas and Mohawks to injure no Christians in their wars with other tribes and, offering his services to restore peace, invited some of the Susquehannas to visit him at New York. Early in January, 1676, he wrote again to Hartford that King Philip with four or five hundred braves had gone into winter quarters within forty or fifty miles of Albany. Actually, the camp was not more than twenty miles to the northeast of Albany. As the Hudson was frozen Andros could send up no soldiers, but the Mohawks, responding to his orders, kept `continual parties out.' The New Englanders would not permit him to give more effectual aid on their own soil even though he promised that to `remove all jealousies' he would forbear to press the duke's territorial claims.
inquiry into the charge which had been loudly put forth in word and in print by the authorities of Massachusetts and Connecticut — the charge that he and his people, or at all events his people, had fomented Philip's War by selling him guns and powder. Although it is possible that secretly, through Mohawk intermediaries, there had been some small traffic of this kind by Albany traders, the governor's strict prohibitions had gen erally been obeyed. The charge of New England was based chiefly upon the words of a mischief-making Englishman at Albany who had been prosecuted and punished. Edward Randolph had written that even in Boston it was known by sober persons to be a mere report `raised out of malice and envy' by men who hated any form of government unlike their own. Now the agents of Massachusetts could say nothing to support it. The king in council pronounced that there was no reason to believe it and forbade the New Eng landers to repeat it unless they could follow it up by immediate legal prosecution and conviction. This they made no attempt to do.