By Peter Neary
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Extra info for By Great Waters: A Newfoundland and Labrador Anthology
Felonies are not triable in this island, but may be tried in any county in Great Britain. Subordinate to the commander in chief are the lieutenant-governors of Placentia and St John's, whose salaries are ten shillings per day; and in his and the Admiral of the harbour's absence, judgment in all cases, except felony, is given by the * Royal Magazine vn (July 1762) 38 By great waters lieutenant-governor of Placentia and St John's, the one and the other being lord chancellors, and judge arbitrarily in all cases.
WE LANDED IN St Peter's Bay 1 where we found the wreck of a birch bark canoe, a sign probably that some of the inland Indians live not very far from thence though as yet we know nothing of them. This subject leads me to say something (though I have as yet been able to learn very little about them) of the Indians that inhabit the interior parts of Newfoundland and are supposed to be the original inhabitants of that country. They are in general thought to be very few (as I have been told), not exceeding 500 in number; but why that should be imagined I cannot tell as we know nothing at all of the interior parts of the island nor ever had the least connection with them, though the French we are told had.
There are already nearly two hundred fishing sloops in this harbour. We have also quite demolished and burned St John's, so that there remain only some houses for our sick, whom it is impossible to carry away from here through the woods. May 18th: This trip from Placentia to the enemy's shores by land seemed impossible to the men of Placentia, who before we came had so little troubled themselves that three English women, prisoners of M. de Brouillon, had all gone by land to Carbonear and Ferryland.