Friday, May 27, 2016

CJ (#55) A Commission in 1694

The examination of Turlagh Sulivan (SU-1) found in Colonial Papers 1700 p. 278, reports the following:

"Examination of Turlagh Sulivan (SU-1), of Pensylvania, who sailed in 1694 on the Dolphin, Richard Want (WAN-1), Commander, who declared he had a Commission from Gov. Jones (JO-1) of Providence against the French.  The ship sprang a leak and Capt. Every (EV-1)took them on board and landed them at Providence.  Every (EV-1) took no prize after he came on board, but some of the crew gave him 200l. as a reward for services he did for them."

A "Commission" was given to private citizens, who were owners of vessels, whom the government in times of war commissioned to proceed against the enemy, who, if captured, the commission entitled them to be treated as prisoners of war.  Called "Privateering" in those days, it was a legitimate business.  A Royal Governor could grant a private captain licenses and expected to share in their spoils.  It would seem that our Cadwallader (JO-1) was in this business during 1694.

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