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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Josiah Martin to William Legge, Earl of Dartmouth
Martin, Josiah, 1737-1786
July 01, 1773
Volume 09, Pages 668-669

[B. P. R. O. Am. & W. Ind.: No. Carolina. No. 220]
Governor Martin to Lord Dartmouth.

No. Carolina New Bern July 1st 1773.

My Lord,

I have had the honor to receive your Lordship's Dispatch No 4 together with an order of His Majesty in Council, dated the 7th day of April last, disallowing an Act passed in the General Assembly of this Province in December 1771, and the Representation of the Lords of Trade, which induced such disallowance. And pursuant to your Lordship's commands I forthwith, declared the Royal Pleasure on the said Act, in the usual manner by Proclamation.

Under the same cover I have also received your Lordship's circular Letter, of the tenth of April, with an order of His Majesty in Council, interdicting the Granting any more of His Majesty's Lands, until the King's pleasure be further signified, to which I shall not fail to pay the strictest regard and in obedience to His Majesty's commands communicated by your Lordship's letter, it was immediately entered on the Council Books. This measure My Lord, will doubtless discourage that spirit of emigration which of late hath prevailed in His Majesty's European Dominions; and seemed to threaten if it was not checked their depopulation, but I apprehend My Lord, it will not operate effectually while the Proprietary Provinces, and the vast Tracts of Land, now held by private persons in all the other Colonies, afford such ample room to Settlers, who will now, I daresay be invited by the intended Proprietors with every

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sort of allurement, and encouragement they can set forth, while the idea of restraint, will favour their views, and promote their interests.

In this Province the emoluments arising from Grants of the Crown Land, make so considerable a part of the Governor's Revenue, that I shall sensibly feel this restriction, but I do assure your Lordship, I lament not the defalcation of my income, however little able to bear it, considering it the price of a public benefit, not only from its tendency to prevent emigration, from Great Britain and ireland, but as I conceive it may afford opportunity to put his Majesty's Revenue of Quit Rents upon a good footing, throughout this Continent, which I look upon to be an object of great importance.

Since I had the honor of writing to your Lordship, I have made a tour to Edenton, and through the North East Counties, as far as the Boundary between this Colony and Virginia, in which I have seen a large tract of the most fertile Land that I have met with in America, and that would be of equal Beauty and value, if the circumjacent Country, was not too uniformly flat and level. Great quantities of wheat will be raised there this year, and I think it inferior to none I have ever seen.

I have the honor to be &c,