The Account of the Spanish Wreck on the Coast of North Carolina.
When the Governor met His Majesty's Council on the 25th of Septr at Newbern, The first thing He did was by their consent to send down Colonel Innes a member of Council, and who was well acquainted with the Spanish language and methods of Trading, to enquire into their circumstances, and make Report of what was necessary to be done for preservation of the Register Ship Neustra Segniora de Guadalupa then lying in distress at Ocacock, and whose Cargo was worth 1000000 pieces of Eight; And what their Reasons were for not applying to the Governor,
To his Excellency Gabriel Johnston Esqr Governor and Com̄ander in Chief In and Over the Province of North Carolina and Vice Admiral of the same.
The Humble Petition of Don Juan Manuel De Bonilla Sheweth
That after your Petitioner had got into Ocacock with the loss of His Masts and Rudder, He found that by the Intrigues and Artifices of Pedro Roderiguez Boatswain of the said ship His Men very mutinous and ungovernable, that the said Boatswain having got most of the Men on His side and under Pretence of going to Virginia forced your Petitioner
That when Your Excellency was pleased to send Colonel Innes to enquire into the State of Our affairs and to make Report to Your Excellency, He the said Colonel expressed to Your Petitioner, His fear that the Masters of those Sloops would run away with the Cargo, and offered to take Possession of them and carry them up the River for their greater security which Your Petitioner heartily approved of, But the said Boatswain backed by most of the Crew told Your Petitioner that He would not suffer the Money to be moved, upon which Your Petitioner was forced to desist. That when Your Petitioner was coming up to wait upon Your Excellency by the advice of Colonel Innes He Ordered the Boatswain who in His absence had the Com̄and of the Ship, to unbend the sails of the Two Sloops and to clap Ten Men on board of each of them both which he neglected to do
That on Tuesday the 9th of October at Noon day both Sloops cut their Cables in order to go to Sea, but one of them getting a ground the Boatswain let the other Escape 'thō she was a dull Sailer and had not Ten men on Board while the Boatswain had the Com̄and of fifty Men
That Your Petitioner now the Bad Weather is coming on and his Men so mutinous, is under great apprehensions that the Remainder of the Plate, and Cochineal will be either lost or embezzled.
Your Petitioner Therefore humbly Prays Your Excellency to take the Premises into Your Consideration, and to direct His Majesty's Sloop the Scorpion to take on Board the remainder of the Plate and Cochineal, and to Transport the same to Europe for which He agrees to let Your Excellency have a Reasonable salvage, And the Captain of the Scorpion the usual and accustomed Freight. and Your Petitioner &c.
In Compliance with this Request the Governor gave necessary Orders, and the Captain of the Sloop has informed Him by a Letter from Ocacock Bar, that He has taken on Board the Captain of the Register Ship with fifty Chests of Dollars, and thirteen Bags of Cochineal, and a few other small matters, The Sloop that got away has carried off all the rest of this Valuable Cargo, Expresses have been sent to the West India Islands, and to the northern and Southern parts of the Continent, to give Notice of this Robbery, and likewise Two Schooners well Man'd and Arm'd, to Search the Coast least they should be lurking some Creek there.
This is a true Account of what happened on this Occasion, and I shall reckon myself very happy if my Conduct is approved of by your Grace.