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Northampton, Hatfield, and Deerfield are all pleasant, flourishing towns, succeeding each other as you travel northerly on the west side of the river.
Conftitution.] The Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, established in 1780, contains a declaration of rights and a frame of government. The declaration afferts the natural freedom and equality of men-Liberty of conscience-Freedom of the press_Trial by jury-Sovereignty and independence that all power is derived from the people that hereditary honours and emoluments are inadmissible—that every fubject is entitled to protection of life, liberty, and property-and, in return, must obey the laws and pay his proportion of the common expence that he shall not be obliged to accuse himself ; but may be heard in his own defence—that he may keep arms ; but standing armies shall not be maintained in time of peace--that no tax shall be levied without the consent of the people by their representatives—that no ex poft facto law shall be made-that the martial law shall extend only to men in actual military service-that the legislative, executive, and judiciary powers shall be kept distinct, &c. By the frame of government, the power of legislation is lodged in a general court, consisting of two branches, viz, a fenate and a house of representatives, each having a negative upon the other. They meet annually on the last Tuesday in May. No act can be passed without the approbation of the governor, unless two-thirds of both branches are in favour of it. Either branch, or the governor and council, may require the opinion of the justices of the supreme judicial court, upon important questions. Senators are chosen by districts, of which there cannot be less than thirteen. The number of counsellors and senators, for the whole commonwealth, is forty; the number of each district is in proportion to their public taxes; but no district shall be so large, as to have more than fix. Sixteen senators make a quorum. The representatives are chosen by the several towns, according to their numbers of rateable polls. For 150 polls one is elected ; and for every addition of 225, an additional one. Their travelling expences to and from the general court, are defrayed by the public, but their wages for attendance are paid by their own towns. Impeachments, for misconduct in office, are made by the representatives, and tried by the senate ; but the judgment can go only to removal from office and future disqualification. Money bills originate in the house of representatives, but may be altered by the senate. Representatives are privileged from arrests on mesne process. Sixty members make a quorum.
The fupreme executive authority is vested in a governor, who is elected annually by the people, and has a council confifting of the lieutenant-governor, and nine gentlemen chosen out of the forty, who are returned for counsellors and fenators. Five counsellors make a quorum. The governor is commander of all the military force of the commonwealth. He may convene the general court, may adjourn them, when the two branches disagree about the time, and in their recess, may prorogue them from time to time, not exceeding ninety days-may pardon convicts, but the legislature alone can grant pardons before conviction. He commissions all officers, and, with advice of council, appoints all judicial officers. Military officers are thus appointed; the respective companies choose their captain and fubalterns, who choose their regimental officers, who choose
their brigadiers. The major-generals are appointed by the general court. Justices of the peace are commissioned for seven years; all other judicial, and all executive and military offices, continue during good behaviour, yet are removeable by the governor, upon address of the legislature. The falaries of governor and justices of the supreme court, cannot be diminished, although they may be enlarged. Official qualifications are as follows—for a voter, twenty-one year's age, one year's residence, a freehold of three pounds annual value, or fixty pounds of any other eftatefor a representative, 4.100 freehold, or £,. 200 other estate, and one year's residence in the town--for a fenator, £;-300 freehold, or £.600 other estate in the commonwealth, and five years residence in the district-for governor, or lientenant-governor, £10oo freehold, and seven years residence. Every governor, lieutenant-governor, counsellor, senator, or representative, muit declare that he believes the Christian religion, and has the legal qualincations. A governor, lieutenant-governor, or justice of the fupreme court can hold no other office. No man fall hold two of these oifices, judge of probate, ferits, register. No justices of the supreme court, fecretary, attorney-general, treasurer, judge of probate, inftructor of Harvard College, clerk, register, sheriff
, or custom-oficer can have a feat in the legislature. The privilege of Habeas Corpus cannot be sufpended more than a year at one time. In 1795, if two-thirds of the qualified voters desire it, a convention thall be called to revise the constitution.
Bridges.] The principal bridge in this state, or in any of the United States, is that which was built over Charles river, between Boston and Charlefon, in 1786.
The following is an accurate description of this convenient and handsome structure:
30 39 Piers at equal distance,
Each pier is composed of seven sticks of oak timber, united by a cappiece, strong braces and girts, and afterwards driven into the bed of the river, and tirinly focured by a single pile on each side, driven obliquely to a folid bottom. The piers are connected to each other by large ftring pieces, which are covered with four-inch plank. The bridge is 43 feet in width, and on cach fide is accommodated with a passage fix feet wide, railed in for the safety of people on foot. The bridge has a gradual rise from each end, so as to be iwo feet higher in the middle than at the extrenities. Forty elegant lamps are erected at a suitable distance from each
other, to illuminate it when necessary. There are four strong stone wharfs, connected with three piers each, sunk in various parts of the river.
The draw is constructed on the most approved plan; the machinery is very simple; and it is designed to require the strength of two men only in raising it. The floor on the bridge at the highest tides, is four feet above the water, which generally rises about twelve or fourteen feet.
This bridge was completed in thirteen months : and while it exhibits the greatest effect of private enterprize within the United States, is a most plealing proof, how certainly objects of magnitude may be attained by spirited exertions.
Another bridge, of a similar construction, has been erected over Mystic river at Malden; and another is now building at Beverly, which will connect that flourishing little town with Salem. These are works of much enterprize, ingenuity and public spirit; and serve to thew that architecture, in this state, has risen to a high pitch of improvement. It is a confideration not unworthy of being here noticed, that while many other nations are wafting the brilliant efforts of genius in monuments of ingenious folly, to perpetuate their pride; the Americans, according to the true spirit of republicanism, are employed almost entirely in works of public and private utility.
Trade, Manufactures and Agriculture.] In the year 1787, the exports from this state exceeded their imports; and it is more than probable that, from the rapid increase of manufactural and agricultural improvements, and the prevailing spirit of industry and economy, the balance in favour of the itate will be annually increased. The exports from the port of Boston, the year paft, (August 1788) consisting of fith, cil, New England rum, lumber of various kinds, pot and pearl-ashes, flax-seed, furs, pork, beef, corn, flour, butter, cheese, beans, peas, bar-iron, hallow ware, bricks, whale-bone, tallow and spermaceti candles, soap, loaf-fugar, woolcards, leather, shoes, naval stores, ginseng, tobacco, bolts, duck, hemp, cordage, nails, &c. amount to upwards of £•345,000 lawful money. New England rum, pot-alh, lumber, fish, and the produce of the fishery, are the principal articles of export. No less than 4783 hogtheads of New England rum were distilled and exported from this state lalt year, besides the home consumption, which was not inconsiderable *.
* New England rum is distilled from molaffes imported from the Weft Indies. It may be a question worthy of confideration, whether the molafles which is annually distilled in New England, by being mixed with waur, would not af. ford a drink cheaper, more palatable, and more nourishing, than that which is made from the rum distilled from it, and treble in quanity? If so, all the labour and expence of dijillation might be spared, and converted to more uj ful, and perhaps to more lucrative manufactural or agricultural purposes. Naru England rum is by no means a wholejome liquor. Dr. Douglass has offerted, • That it has killed more Indians than their wars and sicknejjes. It does not spare white people, especially when made into flip, which is rum mixed with small beer and Muscovado jugar.'
New markets for the produce of this, and the other states, are continu. ally increasing. The Cape of Good Hope, the Isle of France, Surat, Batavia and Canton, have lately opened their ports to receive the articles of beef, pork, bacon, butter, cheese, timber, ginseng, and several others. To Great Britain are sent pot and pearl afhes, Itaves, fax-seed, bees-wax, &c. To the West-Indies, lumber, fish, pork, beef, four, &c. The whale, cod, and mackarel fisheries, employ a great number of hands, and yield a handsome profit. The Negro trade is totally prohibited in Massachusetts, by an act passed in the winter of 1788.
Annual improvements are made in agriculture, chiefly by gentlemen of fortune. The common husbandmen in the country, generally choose to continue in the old track of their forefathers. The Academy of Arts and Sciences have a committee, by the name of the • Agricultural Committee,' whose business it is to receive and communicate any useful information upon that subject.
In this itate are manufactured pot and pearl-ashes, linseed oil, bar and cast iron, cannon, cordage, spermaceti oil and candles, and many smaller articles, such as linen, woollen and cotton cloth, hosiery, hats, shoes, tools and inftruments of husbandry, wool-cards, snuff, clocks, cutlery, muskets, cabinet-work, &c. The town of Lynn is particularly famous for the manufacture of womens filk and stuff shoes. It is computed that they make 170,000 pair of them annually. These are exported to various parts of the union.
A cotton manufactory has lately been established at Beverly, which bids fair to be productive of advantages to the town.
An association of the tradesmen and manufacturers of the town of Borton, has lately been formed, consisting of a representative from each branch. In this body the whole manufacturing interest of that patriotic town is combined. By a circular letter of August 201h, they have strongly recommended the same procedure to their brethren in the several sca-ports in the union, This association will doubtless be productive of happy effects.
Ship building, after a long stagnation since the peace, now begins to revive in various maritime parts of the state. Preparations are making for a glass-house in Boiton.
Mr. Joseph Pope, of Boston, has constructed a large, complete and elegant Planetarium, fix feet in diameter. This is entirely a work of original genius and afliduous application, as Mr. Pope ncver saw any machine of the kind but his own. It exhibits a proof of great strength of mind, and really does him much honour.
Revenue and Taxes.] The principal fources of revenue are land and polltaxes, imposts, excises, and the sales of new lands. Taxes are levied on all males between fixteen and fifty, except such as are exempted by law-also on the number of acres of improved and unimproved land-on dwellinghouses and barns, warehouses, stores, &c. these are all valued, and upon this valuation taxes are laid, so many pounds for every £.1000.
Mines and Minerals.] In Attleborough is a magnetic iron ore; it yields a red shot iron, not good. In Attleborough Gore is some copper ore, but so intermixed with the iron rock ore, as to render both unprofitable.
Alum slate, or ftone, has been found in some parts; also ruddle, or red earth, which serves to mark sheep, and may be used as a ground colour for priming, instead of Spanish brown. Several mines of black lead have been discovered in Brimfield, and the neighbouring places; and white pipe clay, and yellow and red ochre, at Martha's Vineyard. There is a valuable copper mine at Leverett, in the county of Hampshire, lately difcovered ; and at Newbury are beds of lime-stone and asbestos.
Hiftory.) On the 19th of March, 1627, the Plymouth council sealed a patent to Sir Henry Roswell, and five others, of all that part of New England, included between a line drawn three miles south of Charles river, and another three miles north of Merimak river, from the Atlantic to the South Sea *. This patent gave a good right to the soil, but no powers of government. A royal charter was neceitary. This passed the seals March 4th, 1628. Until this year, a few scattering fettlements only had been made in Massachusetts Bay. In the summer of 1627, Mr. Endicot, one of the original planters, with a small colony, was sent over to begin a plantation at Naumkeag, (now Salem.). The June following, about 200 persons, furnished with four ministers +, came oter and joined Mr. Endicot's colony; and the next year they formed themselves into a regular church. This was the first church gathered in Massachusetts, and the second in New England. The church at Plymouth had been gathered eight years before. In 1629, a larger embarkation was projected by the company in England; and at the request of a number of respectable gentlemen, most of whom afterwards came over to New England, the general consent of the company was obtained, that the government and patent should be transferred and settled in Massachusetts.
In 1630, seventeen Thips from different ports in England, arrived in Mafsachusetts, with more than 1500 passengers, among whom were many
* This tract of country was called MASSACHUSETTS BAY. The Massachusetts tribe of Indians lived around, and
their rame to the large bay at the bottom of this tract; hence the name Massachusetts Bay: The Indian word.is Mais Tchusaeg, hagnifying the country this side the hills.
The following extract from the epifle dedicatory to a fermon preached at Plymouth, in 1620, will Joew the ideas then entertained respecting the fitnation of the South Sea.
• New England, fo call'd, not only (to avoid novelties) because Captain Smith bath so entituled it in his defcription, but because of the resemblance that is in it of England, the native soil of Englifomen: it being much what the same for heat and cold in summer and winter, it being champion ground, but not high mountains, fomewhat like the foil in Kent and Eflex; full of dales, and meddow ground, full of rivers and sweet springs, as England is. But principally, so far as we can get find it is an island, and near about the quantity of England, being cut out from the maine land in America, as England is from the maine of Europe, by a great arm of the sea, which entreth in forty degrees, and runneth up north-west and by west, and goeth out either into the South Sea, or else into the bay of Canada. + Meffrs. Higginson, Skelton, Bright and Smith. N 4