Copy of the original Indian deed, for the Town of East-Hampton
TRIAL OF WYANDANCH
OATH OF TOWN OFFICERS
The Oaths of the Officers of the Town were very minute, and pointed
out their duties. The Oaths are generally very solemn; sometimes however
the forms were singular, and expressed in the extreme quaint style of the
day. The following was at an early period, the Oath of the Constable:
"You, being chosen eonstable of this Court, Doe swear, by the name of the Great, Ever-Living God, that you will faithfull put in execution all such warrants as shall be entrusted unto you for to execute, during this year for which you are chosen, in case you stay among us, soe well as you can, soe helpe you God."
"At a Legall Meeting of ye freeholders and Commonalty of ye Town of East-Hampton, April ye first, 1718, Cornelius Conkling was chosen Town Clerk, and sworn as followeth:
"You, Cornelius Conkling, Do swear that you shall safly keep all ye Books and Records delivered to you, and also to Record all Town and Trustees votes, until another person is chosen for that purpose, and also to give coppys out of Sd. Records, as you may be required by ye Town or Trustees, as Town Clerk, According to ye best of your cunning, wit and power, so help you God."
Sworn before me,
ROBERT HUDSON, Justice.
A true Coppy per me,
CORNELIUS CONKLING, Town Clerk.
The Address drawn up at a General Training, in June, 1682
"To the Honorable the Governour, under his Royal Highness the Duke of
York, The Humble address of the Inhabitants of the Towne of East-Hampton,
upon Long Island, Sheweth:
"Wheras, at the time the Government of New-Yorke was established under our Soveraigne Lord the King, by Collonell Richard Nicolls, and those Gentlemen sent in Commission with him, Wee the Inhabitants of this Towne, soe well as the rest of the Island being required, sent our messengers to attend their Honours, and then, both by word and writing, wee were promised and engaged the Enjoyments of all privileges and liberties, which others of his Majesties Subjects doe enjoy, which was much to our content and satisfaction: Alsoe, afterwards being required by these, his Majesties Commissioners, to send up our Deputies to meete at Hempstead, and there the whole Island being Assembled in our Representatives, wee did then and there, uppon the renewal of these former promises of our freedom and liberties, Grant and Compact with the said Colonel Nicolls, Governor under his Royall Highness, That wee would allow so much out of our Estates yearly, as might defray the charge of Publicke Justice amongst us, and for killing of wolves, &c.
"But may it Please your Honour to understand, that since that Time we are deprived and prohibited of our Birthright, Freedomes and Priviledges, to which both we and our ancestors were borne; Although we have neither forfeited them by any misdemeanor of ours, nor have we at any time beene forbidden the due use and exercise of them, by command of our Gratious King, that wee know of; And as yet neither wee, nor the rest of his Maje tie's subjects uppon this Island, have been at at any time admitted since then, to enjoy a Generall and free Assembly of our Representatives, as others of his Majesties Subjects have had the priviledge of; But Lawes and Orders have beene imposed uppon us from time to time, without our consent, (and therein we are totally deprived of a fundamental Privilege of our English Nation,) together with the obstruction of Trafficke and Negotiation with others of his Majesties Subjects, So that wee are become very unlike other of the King's Subjects in all other Collonyes and Jurisdictions here in America, and cannot but much resent our grievances in this respect, and remaine discouraged with respect to the Settlement of ourselves and Posteritie after us. Yet all this time payments and performance of what hath beene imposed uppon us, hath not beene omitted on our parts, although performance of our premised Privileges aforesaid, have been wholly unperformed; and what payments from yeare to yeare, this many years, hath been made by us, Hath been made use of to other purposes than at first they were granted for and intended by us; Soe that wee cannot but feare, if Publicke affairs, of government shall continue in this manner as they have been, but hope better, least our Freedomes should be turned into Bondage, and Antient Priviledges so infringed, that they will never arrive to our Posteritie. And wee ourselves may be justlie and highly culpable before his Majestie, for our Subjection to, and Supporting of such a Government, Constituted soe Contrarie to the fundamentall Lawes of England; it being a principal part of his Majestie's Antiente and Just Government, to rule over a free people, endowed with many Priviledges above others, and not over Bondmen, oppressed by Arbitrary Impositions and Exactions. These things Considered, we cannot but humbly request your Honor to weigh our condition in the Ballance of Equity, with seryousness, before you proceede to any Action of your owne, whereby to assert the proceedings of your Predecessors in Government, which wee now, with all Christian moderation doe complaine of. And for the redresse hereof, an Addresse as we understand, hath been made to his Royall Highnesse, by a late court of Assize, in behalf of us and our Neighbors in this Colloney; Soe that we are not without hope your Honour hath received Directions to ease us in these our grievances, by the Remedies humbly represented by us, and petitioned for by the Inhabitants of this Island, to the last Court of Assize that did sitt att New-Yorke, to which as yet, no satisfactorie answer hath beene made. If therefore your Honour may bee an Instrument under God, and his Majestie our Soveraigne Lord the King, to relieve us, and the rest of his Majestie's good subjects upon this Island in our grievances, and bee a meanes to helpe us to the free Enjoyment of our Birthright Priviledges, which the fundamentall Constitution of our English National Government doth invest us with (which as we doubt not, will bee very pleasing to his Majestie, and all your Loyall Superiors,) Soe your Honour may bee assured it will firmly Engage and Oblige us, your humble Petitioners, and our Posteritie after us, to have your Prudence and Justice in Honourable Remembrance, as the first Restorer of our freedome and priviledges, to our great Contentment. But, Sir, if it shall fall out otherwise, which God forbid, and wee are very unwilling to suppose, and that your Honour should, by reason of Counsells and Sugestions, pursue a contrary course to our humble Desires, soe as to continue or augment our grievances, then wee request your Honours Pardon and Excuse, if in our conscience to God, and in Honour and Submission to his Majestie, our most Gratlous Soveraigne, we prostrate our Selves, and our State and Condition, before the Throne of his unmatchable Justice and Clemencie, where we doubt not to find Relief and Restauration, and can doe no less, in the meane time, but Resent our forlorne and bereaved Condition. So, Sir, as our prayers are Continued for a happy and glorious Reighne to his Sacred Majestie the King; and alsoe our prayers shall be for your Honour, that you may be a blessed Instrument under God, in your Wisdome, Justice and Equity over us: And humblie make bold to subscribe ourselves his Majestie's poore, depressed, though Loyall Subjects and your most Humble Servants.
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