Chester Aug 25° 1697

Honoured Sr

I was not a little surprized at the news your last brought, I can hardly belive Mr Mason will find any body but himself will undertake to say he was treated here by the Warden and my\e/ self like a Footman, I am sure we both attended\went to meet/ him as far as Ruabon, which is 4 miles beyond Wrexham and good\full/ 15 measured miles from hence, and we treated him and Mr Hanmer and other he brought along with him to the expence of 3 Guineas, the night he came \hither/, and the Warden gave him eight or ten bottles of Wine |at another time| in the Treary, and treated Mr Clark\him/ and {illeg}|Mr| Clark \again/ at my Lodgings as far \as/ he would accept; and during his stay here I attended him with all the respect I know how to pay; but I found him very cold towards me, and wholly addicted to Mr Clark; and his \chief/ business seemed to be to oblige the Warden to restore Boules and take of Lewis's suspension; in which case he offered his word, that no more should be said of the affidavit of undue preference, but if he refused, he was known to be a very good solicitor, and severall that stood in his way had felt the effects of it. The Warden however persisting that he would waite an answer from Mr Newton in Lewis's case, and that Boules's place being supplyed by another he could do nothing in that neither; Mr Mason went away from him dissatisfied, and the next day twas buzzed about in the mint that Treasonable practises would be sword|n| against the Warden, and accordingly that night Mr Hanmer got Alderman Lloydd to the Tavern, and there drew up the affidavit with his own hand |(|as Mr Williams informs me,|)| there was no other occasion fiven for making this affidavit, than what I told you in my last, which the persons \who/ signin|ed|{sic} the affidavit\certificate/ inclosed therin will testify upon oath if occasion require. I hope Mr Ma{s}son considers that words spoken i|o|n the 9th of February, ought not to be conceald till the 21th of Iuly, if they be dangerous to the Government; wherby this whole affaire will pass for the effect of Malice and dsign in all und|b|iasd judges. And Williams told me that Hanmer had \they/ formed a designe to have gotten my place, if he could have trappt me saying or doing anything they could lay hold on, but by the advice of a friend that know them I scapt the snare, as I have formerly given you an exact account. I rejoyne that you are resolved <1v> not to leave the Town till the business be fully over, and if the Warden be heartily our friend I doubt not \of/ the event. By Mondays post you shall be now of a copy of all the Accounts of our Mint except what Mr Clark has had, bhe being not yet come to Town. Mr Lewis has not yet delivered in any account in writing, but has now brought his Ballance to about 2|3|0li, tis easy to know the use he may have made in this long delay. But I shall take care that what he may have b{u}{o}rrowed \to make up his cas{t}/ shall not be repaid by\out of/ his subsequent cas{e}: for I have taken such care of\a method for/ the payments now, that I can bring him to a ballance upon demand. I do not belive the Lords will thank Mr Neale for his thus stickling for Lewis when they know the whole story, nor that they will think him so necessary that the Mint cannot be without him. As to his being such a Gentleman I am fully informed his father was a shoemaker in Wrexham, and afterwards kept the poll house there, and some say he sold drink there, but that is no argument, the man is an ingenious man and well educated, and till Mr Clarke blew him up with promises and false insinuations, was very serviceable in the Mint though always leaning that way. But perhaps Mr Mason thinks all Watchmen Gentlemen and we Saxons Rogues, Villains &c. tis strange to think a man so nice as he in point of breeding, who could think a hard word f{illeg}|r|om the first officer in the Mint to the last Clerk should require a standish or more, should be guilty of such Language against persons who never injured him, and as to all the Mints being said to be against us, I am sure both the Assaymaster and Monyer and all the Monyers people are not of that number, and if the Master and melter have a turn to serve and buy the Clerks to their Interest, why those should be said to be all the Mint, he best knows. Tis true the Warden was a Meniall servant of my Lord Godolphin some years since, and in requitall of his good services my Lord preferred him to this post here, but he was far above a footman, and his education shews him to have been alwais in better circumstances than so, and it may be well supposed that my Lord would not have thus preferrd him, but that he know his merit. he has been all along very respectfull to me and I <2r> to him, and wee look upon our selves as joyned in Office to see the Kings business well and faithfully performed. And the exact care we have taken has occasioned all those fonds, of which this is a summary account. We were in a manner all strangers when we mett here at first, and Mr Clark contending that Boules and Lewis ought to have the money delivered them by weight only, that they might report the tale as they pleased, the warden and I opposed it; and on consult above, it was determined that the money should be deliverd to them, as the Importers {Agouts}, by Tale as well as wt. this occasiond the first quarrell, and Clark pretending to take offence at something that nobody \else/ observed in the Company, went and borrowed Boules his sword to waylay the Warden as he went home, but this wee lookt upon as a scarecoew, because he might have met him if he pleased: this was Octob. 25°. On Novemb 19 following \he/ being displeased at the telling of the money, a trick was put upon the Warden by taking money out of 6 Iourneys, two shillings or half a Crown out of each, at the time pixing them, as I verily belive {sic}; and because the Warden assisted the Weigher and teller \in telling them/ he pretended that one of them too, should loose their places for Nealing that money, sufficiently indicating that he meant the Warden, who as it hapned, did touch but 3 of those Iourneys, and Brown Clarks {creature} baggd them all: and it was observable, these were the \very/ first Iourneys that were reweight|d| after telling: this Villanous practise gave me an aversion to those that were capable of it, and shewd the necessity of standing form to oppose the|,| or else to\if I would not/ quit my post. On Decemb 15 Clark left us and went to London where he continued till the Latter end of Aprill during which time I am sure the King and Country were better served than before or since, as will appear by the Books of the Mint. When he came back again, he pretended to challenge the Warden, came before the Hour with his Man and Horses contrary to agreement as the Warden said) and stand not after it, by which means they fought not, and I remonstrating the folly of such decisions to both partys, that went no further. With his return the money received, and the pot and Money assay proved worse then ever, which being represented to you and the Warden, Robinson makes his affidavit of undue preference, which being thought impertinent, Hanmer sweres Treason to as little purpose. Those are violent attaques upon an innocent man, and may provoke to some indiscretions those that are matters of more temper then < insertion from the left margin > either he or I. I cannot transcribe this long story so entreat your pardon for the blotts therof. Alban Greys note for the 15li was paid by Lewis on the 6th of March, when I was at London, and is made payable to him; I know the Warden was willing to oblige him, and might desire Lewis to let him have the money. that is all I know < text from f 2r resumes > < insertion from the left margin of f 1v > of the matter, save that Gray was solliciting for it before I went out of Chester; if this small summ sticks as I find it does, I hope that a crime in one Man will be no virtue in another.

Edm. Halley

< text from f 2r resumes > <3r>

The Inclosed letters are true coppies of what past between us i|o|n the Locking up the Treary, which was the 29th of Iuly, we attended the next morning expecting to hear from Mr Clark in order to a p{illeg}ly but not seing {sic} him we sent him the letter we signed which was left at his lodgings by 11 in the morning, and instead of answering it as we expected between 2 and 3 he procured himself to be arrested by a great friend of Robinsons, whereupon wee had the Officer and his prisoner and the plaintiff before the Mayor, where the Officer declared he did it by consent of all parties, and that no action was enterd, and they were all ashamed aft; the next day about 11 he sent the answer directly contradicting all we said as to the accounts, and taking no notice of the demand of a closet to lock the money up in, which he mai{illeg}|nt|ained should only lie in baggs about the treary floor, from whenev if a bagg were conveyed he would expect us to make it good. Neither did he ever order or Williams ever offer, to give Morley the ticketts to enter them, and as to the Wardens telling Mr Clark he had nothing to do in the Treary, I was by, and heard no such thing, I will make oath if need be, and those that pretend he said so, add that he said will it, till such time as you account for what you have already had. for twas unremarkeable Lewis did not go about to make up his account till after this time. Mr Lewis Iust now tendered me an account ballanced desiring me to sign it; I have all the particulars by me, but cannot get it ready for this post; I hope Monday will be time enough, when I shall give you a particular {setedute} of his bills. Pray excuse any defect in this tedious scrall from the hast I am in, my last came too late for the post, and cost me a messenger on purpose. I am.

Honoured sr

Your most obedient servt

Edm. Halley.

[1] [2] <3r>

To Thomas Molineux Esqr:
in White Lyon Courte
in Cornhill

humbly present


[1] I should have added that the same day Mr Clarke sent this letter he went out of town and never staid for an answer.

[2] I send you these Letters fearing those I sent on Iuly 31° were intercepted to our great mistfortune. If you had them not I can nearly guess what became of them. Twas a great packet with one for Mr Neale and another for Mr Newton both unsealed.

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