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By Vertue and in Persuance of an Order of his Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council ...
1738 51 lines in two hands on two sides of a folded folio sheet, seven counter signatures in the left margin of the first page each with the same wax seal; old folds. v.g.'... We do hereby in his Majesty's name command & require you imediately [sic] upon receipt hereof to issue out your severall precepts yr. severall & respective petty constables within your Division thereby requiring them & every of them upon Thursday the twenty fourth of August ... in the night time to make a general & privy search through their severall & respective constabularys for the finding and apprehending of all rogues, vagabonds & sturdy beggars and all straggling seamen who are fit to serve on board his Majesty's ships and such as they shall ...' The constables were to be paid 'twenty shillings for each seaman fit for his Majesty's service & sixpence a mile for every mile they respectively travel not exceeding twenty miles'. The warrant continues with a particular instruction 'to be & appear at the house of Benjamin Scaife - situate? in Stockton - in the said County on Friday the twenty fifth instant at ten of the clock in the forenoon to make returne to such of his Majesty's Justices of the Peace'. The final six lines are in a different hand: 'To Mr John Jefferson Chief Constable for the South Division of Stockton ward ...' In 1738 the British Navy employed under 54,000 seamen, a figure that rose to 98,000 in 1791. Impressment, or the 'press gang' had been used in times of war from the mid 17th century onwards; by the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805 a staggering 120,000 seamen were pressed in the British Navy. Although at peace in 1738 war fever had gripped Britain following the presentation to Parliament by Robert Jenkins in March, of a pickled ear claimed to have been cut off by a Spanish captain in 1731. This led to the War of Jenkins Ear in 1739 and was perhaps the reason for this warrant. PLEASE NOTE: For customers within the UK and the EU, this item is subject to VAT.
      [Bookseller: Jarndyce Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2017-11-22           Check availability:      Direct From Seller    

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