The John Peter Zenger Trial: Selected Letters
Letter from Gov. William Cosby to the Duke of Newcastle (October 1732):
I am sorry to inform your Graace that the example and spirit of Boston people begin to spread amongst these colonies in a most prodigious manner.  I had more trouble than I could have imagined; however for this time I have done pretty well with them; I wish I may come off as well with them of the Jersies.
Letter from Gov. William Cosby to the Duke of Newcastle (1732):
There is one, James Alexander, whom I found in here both in New York and the New Jersey Councils, although very unfit to sit in either, or indeed to act in any capacity where His Majexty's honor and interest are concerned.  He is the only man that has given me any uneasiness since my arrival....In short, his known very bad character would be too long to trouble Your Grace with particulars, and stuffed with such tricks and oppressions too gross for Your Grace to hear.  In his room I desire the favor of Your Grace to appoint Joseph Warrell.
Letter from Gov. William Cosby to the Duke of Newcastle (May 1733):
Things are now gone that length that I must either discipline Morris or suffer myself to be affronted, or what is worse, see the King's authority trampled on and disrepect and irreverence to it taught from the Bench to the people by him who, by his oath and his office, is obliged to support it.  This is neither consistent with my duty nor my inclination to bear, and therefore when I return to New York I shall displace him and make Judge Delancey Chief Justice in his room.
Letter from Gov. William Cosby to the Board of Trade (December 1734):
Mr. James Alexander is the person whom I have too much occasion to mention....No sooner did Van Dam and the late Chief Justice (the latter especially) begin to treat my administration with rudeness and ill-manners that I found Alexander to be at the head of a scheme to give all imaginable uneasiness to the government by infusing into, and making the worst impression on, the minds of the people.  A press supported by him and his party began to swarm with the most virulent libels.... 

[Morris's] open and implacable malice against me has appeared weekly in Zenger's Journal.  This man with the two others I have mentioned, Van Dam and Alexander, are the only men from who I am to look for any opposition in the administration of the government, and they are so implacable in their malice that I am to look for all the insolent, false and scandalous aspersions that such bold and profligate wretches can invent. 

Letter from James Alexander to Robert Hunter, former governor of New York (1733):
Our Governor, who came here but last year, has long ago given more distaste to the people than I believe any Governor that ever this Province had during his whole government.  He was so unhappy before he came to have the character in England that he knew not the difference between power and right; and he has, by many imprudent actions since he came here, fully verified that character.  It would be tedious to give a detail of them.  He has raised such a spirit in the people of this Province that, if they cannot convince him, yet I believe they will give the world reason to believe that they are not easily to be made slaves of, nor to be governed by arbitrary power....Nothing does give a greater luster to your and Mr. Burnet's administration here than being succeeded by such a man. 

Inclosed is also the first of a newspaper [the New York Weekly Journal] designed to be continued weekly, chiefly to expose him [Cosby] and those ridiculous flatteries with which Mr. Harison loads our other newspaper, which our Governor claims and has the privilege of suffering nothing to be in but what he and Mr. Harison approve of.

Letter from Lewis Morris to James Alexander (London, February 1735):
Everybody here agrees in a contemptible opinion of Cosby, and nobody knows him better, or has a worse opinion of him, than the friends he relies on; and it may be you will be surprised to hear that the most nefarious crime a Governor can commit is not be some counted so bad as the crime of complaining of it--the last is an arraigning of the Ministry that advised the sending of him.... 

The case of Francklin the printer of the Craftsman here, is parallel with Zenger's; his printing house is in our neighbourhood at Covent Garden, but the man himself is a prisoner in the Marshalsea in Southwark; and his writers won't become security for his good behavior in any large some, because they well know whose power it is to construe words; but he like Zenger prints on, and leave those concerned to make the best of it.

Letter from the Board of Trade to the Queen of England (London, 1735):
Colonel Cosby acquaints us in his letter that said Alexander and his party have set up a printing press at New York, where the most virulent libels and abusive pamphlets published against the Ministry and other persons of honor in England have been reprinted, with such alterations as served to inflame the people against the several branches of the the legislature and the administration in that Province. 

That factious cabals are secretly held severaal times a week in New York, at which Alexander is always present, as Morris was before coming privately to England.... 

Colonel Cosby further acquaints us that Rip Van Dam, Morris, Alexander, and others of their party, appear by their behavior to be disaffected to his Majesty's government, and are daily exciting the people to sedition and riot.

Letter from Andrew Hamilton to James Alexander (1736):
I have at last sent you my draft of Mr. Zenger's trial....I have had no time to read it over but once since it was finished.  I wrote it by half-sheets and copied it as fast as I wrote.  The meaning of all this is to beg you to alter and correct it agreeable to your own mind.

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