From Volume XXIII at the Massachusetts State Archives we find these petitions from the Acadians to the General Court while they were exiled in the then Village of Methuen.
In the House of Representatives, September 10, 1756
Voted that thirteen of the French Inhabitants now residing in Gloucester be removed to Wenham and that the other eleven now at the Said Town be removed to Methuen and that the Town of Gloucester be at the charge of their removal.
Sent up for concurrence, T. Hubbard, Speaker.
In Council, September 10, 1756, read and concurred, Thomas Clarke, Deputy Secretary - Consented to, W. Shirley
Bill of Captain William Allen, John Low Jr, Thomas Rand.
Paid John Mallen for conveying John Muise & family to Methuen.
Bills for Joseph Douset & his family.
January 1756 to May 22nd - Bills for John Muse and family.
To the honorable his Majesty's Council of his Majesty's Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England now sitting at Boston, May twenty-fifth, 1757.
The petition of the Selectmen of the Town of Methuen whose names are hereunto subscribed, Humbly sheweth that your petitioners and their predecessors in the same office have taken great care and pains to support the French people which were ordered to dwell in our Town in such manner as might be least cost and charge to the Province and the necessary and unavoidable cost we have been at for their suport, we have exhibited herewith prayihng that your honors would be pleased to order that the same may be paid to our Town - all which is humbly presented by
John Bodwell, William Russ, Stephen Barker } Selectmen of Methuen
Methuen, March 2, 1757
September 1756 - Received a family of French people of the late inhabitants of Nova Scotia, viz., John Muse and his wife & children, that is his sons and three daughters (viz.) Enoch, about twenty years old; Joseph, about ten years old; Lawrance, about eighteen years old; John, about twelve years old; Joseph, about ten y ears old; Charles, about eight yeras old; Paul, about nine months old; and Margaret, about sixteen years old; and Lydia, about six years old; Mary about four years old. The wife of the Said John hath been very sickly the whole time she hatch been in our Town and the whole family unaccustomed to labor, having chiefly got their livelihood by hunting in their own county.
Daniel Bodwell, Ebenezer Barker ] Selectmen of Methuen
Methuen, May 23rd, 1757
An account of what we the subscribers have delivered to the above named French since the second day of March last.
John Bodwell, William Russ, Stephen Barker } Selectmen of Methuen.
Methuen, September 24th, 1757
To his Exelllency Thomas Pownall Esquire, Captain General and Governor in Chief in and over his Majesty's Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England and to the Honorable his Majesty's Council of Said Province.
We the Subscribers, Selectmen of the Town of Methuen, humbly present the following for your Excellency's and your Honors' allowance, being a true and just account of the necessary cost and charge from the first day of June last past to the date hereof, for the support and relief of French inhabitants of Nova Scotia, which were ordered by the General court to dwell in our Town, namely, John Mewis (Mius) and his wife and nine children (viz.) Enoch, Lawrants, Margaret, John, Joseph, Charles, Lydia, Mary and Paul. The eldest of which children is about twenty years old and the youngest is about one year and a half old and the woman during the time of this account hath been very sickly and helpless. We have carefully avoided unnecessary charges and made the account as low as we could, consistent with humanity and justice.
John Bodwell, William Russ, Stephen Barker } Selectmen of Methuen.
His Excellency Thomas Pownall Esquire, Governor, and to the honorable gentlemen of the Council of Boston and honorable House of Representatives,
The humble petition of Lawrence Mieuse (Mius) most humbly sheweth
That the Selectmen of Methuen have about the beginning of last March sent him & his brother to work promising them the same wages that any had in place, which work they continued two months. But going for their wages your petitioner had three yards of old linen priced at 70 the yard, two pounds dried cod & one pound of hog's fat, his brother having little more if any. Your petitioner's family consisting of twelve persons have had allowed them by the town six pounds pork per week & one bushel Indian corn, which the Selectmen tell them will be reduced to half this winter. Your petitioner's brother has done work to the value of three pistoles & 15/, which he going to demand was not only refused payment butpushed out. The man following with a fire shovel struck him in the sie with which made him spit blood all that day and caused a great sore which has disabled him from work ever since. The same person says if it had not been for fear of justice he would as soon kill any of them as a frog. And as for yor petitioner's young family and hmself are almost naked for want of work or the price of his labor and alllodged in a very bad house. He has another brother who worked seven months for another man and would give him nothing, for which he had left him, but the man followed him to the house and almost stripped him naked and said if his father stood in his defense he would split his head. And when two poor women lay in they went to the Selectmen to get boards to stop the snow from blowing in on their beds and a couple of old little blankets to cover them, being plundered of everything valuable when moved from their farms, which they now oblige them to pay for. With sundry other grievances too tedious to mention, all of which he submits to your wise consideration not doubting your assistance and in hope of which he shall for your honors as in duty bound ever pray.
Lawrence + Mieuse
In Council, January 10, 1758, read and ordered that James Minot Esquire, with such as the honorable House shall join be a committee to consider of this petition and report what they judge prooper to be done in the affair.
Sent down for concurrence, A. Oliver, Secretary.
In the House of Reprsentatives, January 10, 1758
Read and concurred and Colonel Choate & Colonel Buckminster are joined in the affair.
T. Hubbard, Speaker
Volume XXIV Page 14
Methuen, April 15, 1758
Accounts, October 1, 1757 to April 15, 1758
The Said family consists of twelve in number, viz. John Muse and his wife and ten children, namely Enoch, Lawrence, John, Joseph, Charles, Paul, Margaret, Lydia, Mary and Susanna. The eldest whereof is about twenty-one years of age and the youngest about five months old.
Ebenezer Barker, James Ordway, John Mansur } Selectmen of Methuen.
Pages 236 to 238
Accounts, March 17, 1759 to December 7, 1759
Extraordinary expenses in sickness with the measles.
Also to taking care of John Mius seven weeks, a French man that was sent by said court to Methuen, but taken sick in said Tewksbury with the fever and afterward the fever and age.
To his Excellency Thomas Pownall Esquire, Captain General & Governor in Chief in and over his Majesty's Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England, to the honorable his Majesty's Council and House of representatives in said province in General Court assembled at Boston, March 19th, 1760.
The petition of John Mius, late inhabitant of Cape Sable, humbly sheweth that your petitioner, when he was brought to New England dwelt some time at Cape Anne and then was carried with my family to the town of Methuen, where we have continued more than three years, where many circumstances occur to set forward my calamity, some of which I beg leave to mention to your Excellency and your honors (viz.) that my wife hath (been?] very poor and sickly ever since she been removed at such a distance from the salt waters and being accustomed only to fishing & hunting(?) for a livelihood at Cap Sable and neigther myself or my sons at all used to husbandry we cannot get such wages for our labor at Methuen or in the nieghboring towns as we might at Cape Anne and two of my sons spent the time the two last summers at Cape Anne with much more profit and advantage than they could have done where we now dwell and three of my sons are determined and promised to go thither again the summer ensuing and although under these disadvantages I am obliged to be very chargeable to the Selectmen of Methuen for the support of my family yet I would request nothing more of the province toward the support of myself, my wife and ten children than a house to dwell in at Cape Anne, I and my sons would choose rather than a house to dwell in and thirty dollars a year at such distance from the sea coast as we now live.
Your petitioner therefore humbly prays with submission that your Excellency and your honors would be pleased to take his case into your most wise and serious consideration and so order that your petitioner with his family may be speedily removed from the town of Methuen to the town of Gloucester and your petitioner as in duty bound will ever pray.
In the House of Representatives, March 22, 1760
Read and ordered that the petitioner have liberty to remove himself and family from the town of Methuen to the town of Gloucester. But that he be obliged to subsist himself and family after such removal without any assistance from the government.
Sent up for concurrence, J. White, Speaker.
In Council, March 24, 1760, read and concurred, A. Oliver, Secretary,
Consented to, T. Pownall.
Pages 293 and 294
To his Excellency Thomas Pownall Esquire, Captain General and Governor in Chief in and over his Majesty's Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England, to the honorable his majesty's Council and House of Representatives of said province in General Court assembled at Boston, April 1760.
The memorial of John Mius, a late inhabitant of Cape Sable, but now residing in Methuen, humbly sheweth.
That y our memorialist, laboring under many difficulties and disadvantages in the place of his residence (which occasioneth him to be very chargeable to the selectmen) he sent his petition to this great & honorable court at their last session. In which petition he desired to be removed with his family from Methuen to the town of Gloucester. There to subsist himself and family without any help or assistance from this government, only a house to dwell in at Gloucester. How be it the order of this great and wise court on the said petition is, that the petitioner have liberty to remove himself and family from the town of Methuen to the town of Gloucester, but that he be obliged to subsist himself family after such removal without any assistance from the government. Now your memorialist humbly conceives that as he hath a great family and some of them small & helpless, a comfortable house to dwell in at Gloucester would be much less cost and charge to the government than what the generality of my country people have bestowed on them according to their circumstances. You memorialist humbly prays that your Excellency and your honors would be pleased in your wisdom to reconsider his case and circumstances and so order that I may have a house to dwell in at Gloucester provided at the cost of the province, that so with hard labor and industry I may subsist my self and family without any further charge to the government and your memorialist (as in duty bound) shall ever pray,
Test. Ebenezer Barker
John + Mius
In the House of Representatives, April 17, 1760
Read and in answer ordered to the Selectmen of Gloucester be directed to procure a suitable house for the petitioner at the cost of the Province.
Sent up for concurrence, J. White, Speaker.
In Council, April 19, 1760, read and concurred, A. Oliver, Secretary.
Consented to, T. Pownall
Pagaes 346 and 347
June 24, 1760
To the Selectmen of the town of Bradford in the said county,
Pursuant to the power and directions given by the Great and General Court to a committee appointed to proportion the French inhabitants to the several towns in said county.
You are hereby required forthwith to cause to be removed to the town of Newbury Ann Lower, alis Dosset (Doucet), Hanna, Margaret, & Eliz. Dossit (Doucet) & the Widow Rashne, five French Neutrals, which were sent by order of the General Court to you & then deliver to one or of the Selectmen of Newbury.
You are also to deliver Mary Richards, a French Neutral girl, to one or more of the Selectmen of Methuen.
And you are to make return to me of your doings in the premises with the names of the persons so removed and the particular charge of removing them.
Salem, June 24, 1760 - Benjamin Lynde
COUNCIL MINUTES: pages 410 through 422
July 20, 1760
Marron Tebedo (Thibodeau) age 8, from Andover
Joseph Leblong (LeBlanc) from Amesbury age 63
Margaret Leblong & infirm age 61
Mary Richards age 13 from Bradford
Amesbury, August 7th, 1760
Honorable sir agreeable to your order sent to us to remove Joseph Leblong & Margaret, his wife, two of the French Neutrals, from our town of Amesbury to the town of Methuen, being twenty miles or upwards. Pursuant to said order we have removed the said Joseph Leblong & Margaret, his wife, from the town of Amesbury to the town of Methuen, & have delivered them to the selectmen of said town & herewith send you account of the charge of removing them.
Thomas Rowell, Stephen Barlett Jr, Eph. West, Selectmen of Amesbury.
Pages 409 through 411
Account from February 29, 1760 to September 8, 1760
To the Selectmen of the Town of Andover in said county, Greeting.
Pursuant to the power and directions given by the Great and General Court to Benjamin Lynde, Icha.(Ichabod) Plaisted, Stephen Higginson, Caleb Cushing & Samuel Phillips Esquire, in committee to proportion the French inhabitants to the several towns in said county & to order the overplus.
You are hereby required forthwith to cause to be removed to Springfield in the County of Hampshire Jermon (Germain) Landry and Sicily (Cecile), his wife, with their children, Francis Landry, Isabelle Landry, Nustusse (Anastasie) Landry, Mary Jos. Landry, & Cicily Landry, Jockey Bare (Jacques Hebert) and Mary Bare (Marie Hebert), his wife, with their children, viz., Molly, Peggy, Maria Jos., Mary Magdalene, Elizabeth, James & Joseph, being sixteen of the Neutrals, which are sent to you by order of the government & them deliver to John Wothington Esq., or his orders who with others was appointed to receive them.
You are also to receive Marron Leberdore, a boy, & deliver him to the Selectmen of Methuen, or any of them.
And you are to make return of your doings in the premises to me with the names of the persons so returned & the particular charge of removing them.
Salem, August 1760 - Benjamin Lynde
Pursuant to this within order we hve removed to springfield the persons hereafter named, Jarman (Germain) Landry & Cicily, his wife, with their children, Francis, Isabelle, Nustusse, Mary Jos., Cicily Landry, Jockey Bear & Mary bear with their children, viz., Molly, Peggy, Mary Jos., Mary Magdelon, Elizabeth, James & Joseph. And likewise we have removed Marrant Lebardore to Methuen & Delivered him to one of the selectmen of that town.
Ebenezer Abbot, Peter Osgood, John Foster, Samuel Johnson, George Abbot Jr, Selectmen of Andover.