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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Description by Thomas Pollock concerning Cary's Rebellion [Extract]
Pollock, Thomas, 1654-1722
Volume 01, Pages 696-699

[From Pollock's Letter Book.]

* * * * President Glover's writ for choosing Assembly men being read by the Deputy Marshal Daniel Halsy, and Col Cary's writ likewise read by one Robt Fendale whom Col Cary had appointed for that end, the people went to electing: and five being chosen, the electors were polled, being ninety four, and those against them being likewise polled were only sixty five, counting several that were but boys and otherwise unqualified. Notwithstanding which fair election, Mr Moseley not approving of the choice, he with those others being in all but sixty five, would needs name other five by themselves, and Mr Moseley and some others of his party making all the confusion they could in the time of election, and endeavouring to stir up strife and quarrels among the people, which if Col Pollock (being on a plantation of his that joined on the election field) had not hindered and pursuaded the people to keep the peace, would have ended in blows.

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On the eleventh of October the assembly men met at Captain Hecklefields, nine coming for Chowan precinct, five of which were returned by the Deputy Marshall, as chosen by the majority, with the electors' names, being ninety four: and Robert Fendall whom Col Cary had appointed . . . . returned both the five chosen by the majority: also the other five chosen by Mr Moseley and his party, being but sixty five, including boys and all, four of this last five only appearing; the other, thinking his election not to be legal stayed at home. all the nine, presently on their meeting, were commanded, by the rest, out of the House, and then immediately the four chosen by Mr Moseley and his party called in again, Mr Moseley himself being one of them; and the other five who were chosen by the majority were forcibly kept out; and could not so much as hear what they had to say; and then chose Mr Moseley speaker, and presented him to Col Cary and his pretended council.

Indeed it could not be expected otherwise, there being but twenty six assembly men in all, so but twenty one, of which 21 eight —— —— the Law requires —— —— county of Bath whose interest it was to stand by Col Cary, for fear of being called to account for that seditious Petition before mentioned; and two or three of the other seven from Pasquotanke of the Quaker's choosing them, so that the five from Curetucke could do nothing against all the rest, only some of them left the assembly Then the instrument of writing, or Commission, from the Lords Proprietors, that Mr Porter brought from England, aforementioned being laid before the pretended assembly, after having heard it read, they carried it by vote, that the Lords Proprietors had not only by that writing suspended the Law made in Col Carys time before mentioned, that laid a fine on any person that should promote ( own) Election, and not qualify himself et cet: but also that the Lords Proprietors, by the said writing had suspended likewise that Law, made in Col Daniels time before mentioned, which requires all person in any place of trust or profit to qualify themselves as the law requires et cet. which Law is not in the least mentioned in the said writing. And they might even as well (have) voted and all this was voted and and acted before qualifying themselves, clearly contrary to the statute made the 20th of Charles IId cap I But they took little notice of Laws or Statutes

Now by the articles of agreement the Assembly were to determine who had the most right to the Presidentship: Col Cary and his Council keeping in one room, and President Glover and his Council in another room: and Col. Daniel, by being a Landgrave, having a right to sit in the upper House with the Deputies, used sometimes with Col Cary in his room,

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but mostly with President Glover, being fully pursuaded of his right to the Government.

President Glover, not to be wanting to himself, put in the following writing or protest to the pretended assembly, delivering it to one of the Assembly men, (it) being as follows.

“In order to the settling this Government in peace, and to put Her Majesty's Laws in execution according to the true intent and meaning of the agreement between the Hon. Thomas Pollock and Col. Thomas Cary, it is absolutely necessary, and I do require, that the Gentlemen returned on the Elections should choose themselves a Speaker, and qualify . . . . . . . . . according to law. and I . . . . . . . . . said members . . . . . . . . . . . be made to an Assembly not to a number of persons coming together, no body knows who. Besides it is contrary to all Law, reason, and in a very high degree derogatory to the Queen's Royal Prerogative, and a betraying of the trust reposed in the Lords Proprietors by the Crown, to submit the determinations of the Government to any number of men howsoever chosen and delegated, though by the unanimous voice of the whole countrys Except such persons shall first acknowledge their allegiance to the Queen, which both the Common Law and the Statute Law requires to be done by an oath: with which Law the Queen hath not, and the Lords Proprietors can not dispence. For in doing otherwise we may give the Government up to be disposed by persons who are traitors to the Queen, or maintain the right of the pretended Prince of Wales, and then to such an Assembly I undertake to prove three things: First, that I am the lawfull President of Her Majesty's Council, and that the Execution of their Lordships's commission does belong to me and no other; Secondly; that Col Thomas Cary is not President nor hath been lawfully possessed of, or is invested with any power of Government in this place since his departure to South Carolina; Thirdly: that though the power of proceeding should extinguish in me by death or Command of the Lords proprietors, the said Col Thomas Cary is not qualified to be Elected President, or to exercise any such power. But if the Gentlemen now met together do assume to themselves an arbitrary power to proceed by any other method, I do, in behalf of our Sovereign Lady the Queen, His Excellency the Palatine, and Lords Proprietors, and            of this Province of North Carolina, protest against all such proceedings; and do as President of the Council and Commander in Chief of this Province, by virtue of the Lords Proprietors commission, and with the advice of the council declared by proclamation dated the 13th of May Anno 1708, strictly charge and command all magestrates, commanders, and officers both military

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and civil, and all other His Majesty's loving subjects, not be aiding or assisting in any such arbitrary power, as they will answer the contrary at their peril. Given under my hand and seal 11th day of October in the seventh year of the reign of our Sovereign Lady Queen Ann of Great Britain &c anno 1708.

And for as much as by your irregular and unlawfull —— nation in a matter of such consequence, I do (in the name) of our Sovereign Lady the Queen, His Excellency the palatine, and Lords Proprietors of this Province of North Carolina, and freeman of the same and in my own behalf, protest against all you have done or shall do against me or to my prejudice and against anything acted or done under my administration, and because Col. Thomas Cary hath publickly threatened and avowed sureptitiously and without form of law to take away my life, and the lives of others that have in pursuance of their duty been aiding and assisting to me in maintaining the Queen's peace in this Government, I do therefore in behalf of myself and them and every of them, appeal to our Sovereign Lady the Queen in Her Courts at Westminster; and do offer myself as the Queen's prisoner, to be sent in chains if the matter so require, to the Governor Generall of Carolina, and thence to Her Majesty's Courts at Westminster: Provided, that the said Col. Cary and Mr John Porter, who have been the chief instruments of these unhappy troubles, will be obliged with good security in the sum of two thousand pounds personally there to appear and prosecute me.

Dated the day and year above said.

To the Gentlemen met and pretending
themselves to be the House of Burgesses

This protest was returned to President Glover by same member of the Assembly to whom he delivered it, with the pretended Assembly's answer, that they would not concern themselves in that matter.

Now as for the Counties qualifying themselves, Col. Cary, Mr Porter, and Mr Foster took the Oaths according to Law. But the Quakers would shew themselves singular coming to the table in the Council with their hats on, laid their hand on the book and repeating the words of the Oath, except the word swear, which they would not pronounce, but word Declare instead thereof, and then having had their explanation of the sense and meaning in which they took it entered underneath they signed it, without kissing the book, and declaring they would allow that sense and explanation of theirs and no other