First Hand Accounts

The Declaration of the People, against Sr: Wm: Berkeley, and Present Governors of Virginia

For having upon specious Pretences of publick Works raised unjust Taxes, upon the Commonaltie, For advancing of Private Favourites. And other sinister Ends, but noe visible Effect, in any Measure adequate.

For not having during the Long time of his Government, In any Measure advanced, this hopefull Colonie, either by Fortifications, Towns, or Trade.

For having abused, and rendered Contemptable, his Maties: Justice, by advancing to Places of Judicature, scandalous and ignorant Favourites.

For having wronged his maties: Prorogative, and Interest, by assuming the monopolie of the Bever Trade.

For having in that unjust Gaine, betrayed and sold, His Matie: Countrie, and the Liberties of his Loyall Subjects to the Barbarous Heathen.

For having, Protected, favoured, and Emboldned the Indians against his Maties: most Loyall Subjects; never Contriving, requiring, or appointing any due or proper Meanes of Satisfaction; for theire many Incursions, Murthers, and Robberies, Committed upon Us.

For having when the Armie of the English, was upon the Tract of the Indians, which now in all Places, burne spoile, and Murder, And when Wee might with ease, have destroyed them, who were in open hostilitie.

For having expresslie, countermanded, and sent back, our Armie, by Passing his word, for the Peaceable demeanours of the said Indians, who Immediatly prosecuted theire Evill Intentions - Committing horrid Murders and Robberies, in all Places, being Protected by the said Engagement, and word passed by Him the said Sr: Wm: Berkeley having Ruined and made Desolate, a greate Part of his Maties: Countrie, having now drawn themselfes into such obscure and remote places, and are by theire success soe Emboldned, and Confirmed, and by theire Confederates strengthned. That the Cryes of Blood, are in all Places, and the Terror, and Consternation of the People soe greate, That They are not only become difficult, but a very formidable Enemie Who might with Ease have bin destroyed.

When upon the loud outcries of Blood, the Assemblie had with all Care, raised and framed an Armie, for the Prevention of future mischeifs, and safe guard of his Maties: Colonie.

For having only with the Privacie of a fewe favourites, without the acquainting of the People, only by Alteration of a Figure forged a Commission, by I know not what hand, not only without, but against the Consent of the People, for the Raising and Effecting of Civill Warr, and Destruction, which being happilie and without Bloodshed prevented.

For having the second time attempted the same, thereby calling down our forces from the Defence of the frontiers, and most weakened and Exposed Places, for the prevention of Civill Mischeife, and Ruine amongst our selves; whilest the Barborous Enemie in all places did Invade Murder and spoile us, his Maties: Loyall Subjects.

Of these the aforesaid Articles Wee accuse Sr. Wm: Berkeley as guiltie of Each and Everie of the same. As one who hath Traiterouslie attempted, violated and Injured his Maties: Interest here, by the loss of a greate Part of his Maties: Colonie, and many of his faithfull and Loyall Subjects, by Him betrayed in a Barbarous and shamefull Manner Exposed to the Incursion, and murder of the Heathen. And We farther declare the Ensuing Persons in this List to have bin his wicked and Pernicious Councellours and Confederates, Aiders, and Assistants against the Commonaltie in these our Civill Commotions.

Sr: Henrie Chicekly Wm: Cole
Coll: Chritopr: Wormly Rich: Whitecar Jon. Page: Clerke
Phillip Ludwell Rich: Spencer Jon: Cuffe: Clerk
Robert Beverlie Joseph Bridges Hub: Farrill
Richard Lee Wm. Claybourne
Thomas Ballard Thom: Hawkins John: West
Wm. Sherwood. Math: Kemp Tho: Readmuch

And we farther Command that the said Sr: Wm: Berkeley with all the Persons in this List bee forthwith delivered upp, or Surrender Themselves, within foure dayes after the notice hereof, or otherwise Wee declare as followeth.

That in whatsoever place, House, or Shipp, any of the said Persons shall Reside, bee hid, or protected, Wee doe declare the Owners, Masters and Inhabitants of the said Parties, to bee Confederates, Traytors to the People and ye Estates, of them; as alsoe of all the aforesaid Persons, to be Confiscated, this Wee the Commons of Virginia doe declare.

Desiring a firme union amongst our Selves, that Wee may Joyntly and with one accord defend our selves against the Common Enimie, and lett not the faults of the Guiltie, bee the Reproach of the Innocent, or the faults and Crimes of the oppressors, devide and sepperate us who have suffered, by theire oppressions.

These are therefore in his maties: name to command you: forthwith to seize the Persons above mentioned, as Traytors to the King, and Countrie, and Them to bring to the Middle Plantations, and there to secure them till further Order and in Case of opposition, if yu: want any farther Assistance, you are forthwith to demand It. In the name of the People, in all the Counties of Virginia.

Nathaniell Bacon Generall, by Consent of the People.