[From Atholl Papers - AP 32(2nd)-1]
On the 14 inst the Comprtroller delivered me your Graces favours dated in Novr & 25th Decr & also the comission with which your Grace has been pleased to honor me & the chief officers, the presentation for Mr Crebbin to the vicarage of Santon, and the warrant for the execution of the unhappy criminal ; as his friends, by his constant asseverations that he had not the least intention of murder but that the fatal stroke was a single blow of the hand without weapon or repetition of violence, has buoyed up this miserable creature with the hopes of Mercy, & made him too negligent in the due preparation for his untimely end. All which I am informed of by the clergy man who attends him, and for these reasons, I have appointed the execution to be on the 22d of next month.
Messrs Mathews & Demanesque of the Lurcher & Easter cutters came lately to a gentlemans house where I was to dine & taking me aside, told me that their intention was to wait on me att Castletown, and out of respect to my personal & not my publick character (for they had not such instructions) to intimate their orders ; and they thereupon produced some queries (founded upon my answer to Capt Mathews letter mentioned in no 10) with the attorney & solicitor generals opinions theron, which substance was that by the act of 7 Geo 1 they had full power to board vessels in the ports of this Isle, & upon their breaking bulk, or information or good causes of suspicion to search and if any goods prohibited by that act was found to seize the ship & cargo as thereby directed and that should the legality of such seizure happen in the first instance to be try'd and given agt them in this Isle, that by the ordinary course of procedure it would at length come in judgement before the King in Council; which opinion they said the Lords of the admiralty had transmitted to them for their direction & government, and would only allow me a cursory reading. Upon finding that these genntlemen (on the one hand) were resolved to board search & seize, and the merchants (on the other hand) as resolute to defend their properties agt what they thought an unwarrantable attack, to prevent extremities I thought it most advisable to persuade these offers of the cutters to desist from any proceedings for a week, and to represent to the merchts the bad consequences that might result to themselves from violent measures, and likewise to any prudential schemes your Grace might be taking upon this occasion, and I succeeded in both. In the interim the Swedish Ship which had so long amused the cutters sett sail & they relieved us from our apprehensions by following her to Newry, tho' the collector of Liverpool declared in company with major Harrison & Comptr that they had orders sometime ago to quit [? suit - blotted letter] her. There is one cutter still at Douglas. I shall take the first proper opportunity to signify yor Graces pleasure to the merchts in answer to their petition, and give the necessary orders for the
reparations work in Castle Rushen as your Grace directs.
The additional allowance your Grace has been pleased to make for the Court dinners I communicated to the officers who have all an equal concern & direction in that affair with me, they say (and very truly) that the late increase of expences, which your Grace is pleased to observe proceeds entirely from the advanced prices of the ordinarys & extraordinarys & to the greater concourse of company then formerly. And that it is not owing to any extraordinary gratification to themselves, for that if the publick occassions did not require such publick entertainments they should have greater satisfaction to dine in private upon their original allowance, but hope to manage the fund so as best to answer your Graces expectations. Upon his late Graces writing to me upon the subject of the boon money, I transmitted the opinion of the Council upon that head & heard no more of it till the conversation at your Grace at Dunkeld, and it was the first order I gave upon my return to this Isle, to have a particular accts kept of that money which takes its annual commencement from the 10th Octor ; and all I can say upon the occassion is that I have paid out upwards of £4 and there have been no money as yet received for this year.
By Chas Lace's return to this Isle there will be a remittance ready ; and as soon as the answer to your Graces letter dated only Novr (which for forms sake I shall fill up the 7th) is poperly digested, I shall leave no time in transmitting it. I have the honor to be
with the greatest respect my Lord
Your Graces most obedient & most humble servant
Castletown 16 Jany 1765