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‘ [178] found it impracticable to obtain in their respective
chap. VII.} 1755.
governments the proportion expected by his Majesty towards defraying the expense of his service in North America, they are unanimously of opinion that it should be proposed to his Majesty's ministers to find out some method of compelling them to do it, and of assessing the several governments in proportion to their respective abilities.’1 This imposing document Braddock sent forthwith to the ministry, himself also2 urging the necessity of some tax being laid throughout his Majesty's dominions in North America. Dinwiddie reiterated his old advice. Sharpe recommended that the governor and council, without the assembly, should have power to levy money ‘after any manner that may be deemed most ready and convenient.’ ‘A common fund,’ so Shirley assured his American colleagues, on the authority of the British secretary of state, ‘must be either voluntarily raised, or assessed in some other way.’

I have had in my hands vast masses of correspondence, including letters from servants of the crown in every royal colony in America; from civilians, as well as from Braddock, and Dunbar, and Gage; from the popular Delancey and the moderate Sharpe, as well as from Dinwiddie and Shirley; and all were of the same tenor. The British ministry heard one general clamor from men in office for taxation by act of parliament. Even men of liberal tendencies looked to acts of English authority for aid. ‘I hope that ’

1 Minutes of Council, held at the camp at Alexandria, in Virginia, April 14, 1755, [and following days]. My copy is from that inclosed in Major General Braddock's Letter of 19 April, 1755, to the Secretary of State.

2 Memoire contenant le Precis des Faits avec les pieces justificatives, 188. Une taxe sur les domaines de sa majestie. Braddock to Sir Thomas Robinson, 14 April, 1755, in the State Paper Office, Am. and W. I. LXXXII.

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