Tuesday, 25th. Having now compleatly refitted the ship, and taken in a sufficient quantity of Provisions of all kinds, I this afternoon took leave of the General, and such others of the principal Gentlemen as I had any connection with, all of whom upon every occasion gave me all the assistance I required. A small dispute, however, now hapned between me and some of the Dutch Naval Officers about a Seaman that had run from one of the Dutch Ships in the Road, and enter’d on board mine; this man the General demanded as a Subject of Holland, and I promised to deliver him up provided he was not an English Subject, and sent the necessary orders on board for that purpose. In the morning the Commodore’s Captain came and told me that he had been on board my ship for the man, but that the Officer had refused to give him up, alledging that he was an Englishman, and that he, the Captain, was just then come from the General to demand the man of me as a Deanish Subject, he standing upon their Ship’s books as born at Elsinore. I told him that I believed there must be some mistake in the General’s message, for I apprehended he would not demand a Deanish Seaman from me who had committed no other crime than preferring the English Service before that of the Dutch; but to convince him how unwilling I was to disoblige any one concerned, I had sent orders on board to deliver the man to him in case he was found to be a Foreigner; but as that was not done I suspected that the man was a Subject of England, and if I found him to be such I was resolved to keep him. Soon after this I received a letter from Mr. Hicks, which I carried to the Shabander, and desired that it might be shewn to the General, and at the same time to acquaint him that, after my having such unanswerable proof of the man’s being an English Subject, as was mentioned in that letter, it was impossible for me to deliver him up. After this I heard no more about it.
December 25, 2013
Tuesday, 25th December, 1770