From the periodical Gloucestershire Notes and Queries:
1321. TOBACCO GROWING IN GLOUCESTERSHIRE. The announcement recently made by the Government of their intention to permit domestic experiments to be made in tobacco culture may render the following facts interesting to Gloucestershire agriculturists. Tobacco growing in the southern and western countiesof England became so common about 1652 that the Commonwealth Parliament of that year passed an Act prohibiting the culture of the plant, and giving liberty to anyone finding it to cut it down.
This Act appears to have caused great dismay and irritation in Gloucestershire. In August, 1653, soon after the reassembling of the House of Commons, “the humble petition of some of the inhabitants of Gloucestershire concerning the planting of English tobacco ” was presented by General Desborow. who, from having been governor of Bristol, was probably well known in the district.
23 July 1652, Jacob Saunders of Holland, a mariner, aged 45, deposes on behalf of John Browne for 51 hogsheads of tobacco.
Richard Sanders, 28 August 1653, 1 acre near the block house in James City, James City County.
George Sanders will index, administrators bond rec. Northhampton County.
Thomas Sanders, 27 May 1654, Gloucester County, land near Mattapony River.
A deposition was filed by Edward Saunders, 30 September 1661, William Evans of Bristol, mariner, that in October 1654 John Freeman of Bristol, mariner, now deceased, delivered to Edward Saunders of Caerleon, Glamorgan, chirurgeon who was then bound on a voyage to Virginia, 3 menserveants to transport with him to Virginia, and there to dispose of them for profit.
Caerleon іs а site оf archaeological importance, being the site оf а notable Roman legionary fortress, Isca Augusta, аnd аn Iron Age hill fort [Wikipedia].
Cromwell’s troops were there in 1648.]
June 6, 1655:
John Hodson and John Garratt 300 acres:
To all ye whereas ye now know you that I the said Edward Diggs Esq. do give and grant unto John Hodson and John Garratt three hundred acres of land lyeing and being in the county of New Kent and on the North East side of Mottopony River bounded as followeth (viz) from a marked red oake on the Southernmost corner of Thomas
Saunders his land with a South, South East line unto Arakeyaco Swamp, thence with Arakeyaco Samp to a line of marked trees running North West by West unto the other corner of Saunders his land being a poplar in a branch of Arakeyaco Creek thence to the place it began with his Saunders his line of marked trees. The said land being due unto the John Hodson and John Garratt by and for their transportation of six persons into this Colony so to have and the hold & yielding and paying to which payment is to be made. Dated the sixth of June 1655
Cavaliers and Pioneers, p. 310; Patent Bk. #3, p. 355
Amos Saunders, 1658, involved with freight on board the ship Rainbow. Named in court case.
Edward Saunders, 30 September 1661, William Evans of Bristol, mariner, a deposition that in October 1654 John Freeman of Bristol, mariner, now deceased, delivered to Edward Saunders of Caerleon, Glamorgan, chirurgeon who was then bound on a voyage to Virginia, 3 menserveants to transport with him to Virginia, and there to dispose of them for profit.
Francis Sanders, 26 June 1663, master of ship Black Eagle. Inwards from Virginia.
John Saunders, 1664 , testifies that he was paid for his work on board ship but does not know where the payment came from. Ship was the Rainbow.
Robert Saunders, 12 August 1666, a letter mentions that the Barbadoes and Virginia fleets have passed under convoy of Captain Robert Saunders of the St. Patrick, who met 6 privateers, sank 3, sent 2 into Portsmouth, and took one of 60 guns with him.
John Saunders, 4 October 1667, Howard vs. Roffey. Christopher Howard owned a farm and land in Lambeth in Surrey. During trial it is testified that the farm has now been leased to John Saunders.
[A] lengthy communication was received by the Government from Bristol, on the 7th August, 1667, doubtless emanating from persons interested in the West India islands. It states that . . . the plant was grown throughout Gloucestershire, even on the land of justices of the peace ; and that as half the profits of the land are paid to the owners for rent, their interest forbids them to destroy it ; that by the King’s order given to the- High-Sheriff of Gloucestershire, with a list of places where tobacco is growing, it was ordered to be cut down, and the names of the owners returned to the Council ; suggesting, as a remedy, a letter from the King to the Judges of Assize for Gloucestershire, ordering returns to be made, and setting fines for neglect ; and that as much tobacco is grown in the neighbouring counties, a strong prohibition be issued against its sale, and a commission given to search for and destroy it” (State Papers, Domestic, 1667, p. 366).
The Government appears to have followed the advice contained in the concluding sentence of this document. In a letter dated Bristol, 19th August in the same year, from an official underling, J. Fitzherbert, writing to Secretary Williamson, is the following : ” Met 120 horse of the King’s and Duke’s guards at Leicester, making to Winscomb in Gloucestershire, to cut down the tobacco planted there in con- tempt of the law.” (76., p. 399.)
Ambrose Sanders, 20 January 1668, merchant 5 hogsheads Virginia tobacco on the ship Unity of Yarmouth.
John Sanders, 10 April 1669, merchant 3 hogsheads 1,296 pounds of Virginia tobacco on ship Unity of Yarmouth.