GN 2/2 CS2
Cozens to Crowdy, Col. Sec.
Brigus 12 Aug 1845
I beg to inform you that a person by the name of John Murphy
blacksmith and his brother of Chappels Cove have been for a long
time troublesome to the Court here, often times applying for a
number of summonses for Chappels Cove people at other times
applying for actions of damages which this court could not grant.
It appears from information I have received the said Murphy had
made himself very obnoxious to the people by many acts of petty
The people complains that he applyt for a grant of Chappels Cove
Pond and did commence draining it dry to cultivate or make a
meadow of it, which would be a great injury to them as it is the
only way of getting fire wood and timber the winter and some times
in small boats in the spring of the year when the brooks are high,
but they say he faild in getting a grant, but that he is one of
the Commissioners for making roads and have such influence over
the rest as he got a bridge built in such a way as to obtain his
object in draining the pond out of revengeful feeling to them.
The whole of the people of that place is very much incensed against
him. Some time ago a man by the name of Murphy mason a relation of
Johns and I believe employ’d by him came here to take an action
for a large amount against the Chappels Cove people for breaking
down a part of the bridge because it tended to drain the pond.
He was told it could not be taken here and instructed what to do.
I hear it is said John Murphy apply’d to the Attny General Mr. Simms.
I do not here (sic) if any thing was done or not.
To day a man by the name of Luke Flemming apply’d who says he is
working about Chappels Cove Bridge but he is no mason and I think
acting only under Murphy’s direction. He states he came from St.
Johns and that he brought notices to serve on the parties from the
Soliciter General and that he instructed him to come to me and lodge
complaint and have them all bound down to the Peace he further
states that Mr. Gill was sent round to settle the dispute between
them &c. But I have only his word for it and he is a stranger. As
many of the Chappels Cove people had been brought down by Murphy &
his brother at sundry times, some bound to the peace and others not
proved guilty and that there has been such a very bad feeling between
them for such a lenght of time.
I thought it prudent before I summons all those people at a
considerable distance and in the midst of the fishery to advise with
you. I shall feel obliged by your inquiring of the late Attorny General
if complaints was made to him as they said it was and if the affaire
was settled and further if Mr. Gill was sent round and if he ordered
it to be built in the way they are doing it now. Being assured this
affair was in the hands of the Attorney General I thought advisable
not to meddle with it until I was better informed.
I took the said Flemming complaint told him it should be attended to
as soon as I heard from St. John’s.
I would beg to suggest if it would not be desirable to send some
disinterested person to examine this place that have caused so much
disturbance for such a length of time.
You will please have the kindness to give me an answer as soon as
I have the honor to be you most ob’d Servant
ref: doc #335 from Joe Byrne, Holyrood Public Library June2009
Transcribed from a typewritten photocopy.
Charles Cozens (1784 ? August 6, 1863), politician, magistrate, was elected to the House of Assembly representing the district of Conception Bay on the first general election held in Newfoundland in 1832.
Cozens was born at Blandford, Dorset England and immigrated to Newfoundland in the early 19th century. He was a cooper by trade and is accredited with establishing the road from Brigus to Makinsons. Cozens served for only one term at the Newfoundland House of Assembly and did not run in the general election that was held in 1836. He was appointed Stipendiary magistrate for Brigus, a position he held until his death on August 6, 1863.
CROWDY, JAMES, office-holder; b. 1794 in England; d. 17 April 1867 at Newton Abbot, Devon, England.
James Crowdy served as clerk of the Council and colonial secretary of Cape Breton Island from 1814 until 1820 when Nova Scotia absorbed that previously independent colony. On 15 Sept. 1831 Crowdy with his wife, Elizabeth (Eliza) (d. 1836), and family arrived in St John’s from Bristol, England, to take up new duties as Newfoundland’s colonial secretary and clerk of the Council. In addition to these appointments he was collector of crown rents, which brought his total official yearly income to £800.