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of conscience to stand in the way of organizing militia and erecting fortifications.*
During the life time of William Penn the Council was Quaker by a considerable majority. His widow directed the Deputy to appoint at least half the Councillors from the Society.t After her death the Council naturally represented the changed feeling of the heirs, so that the whole executive branch was in certain respects disavowed by Friends. James Logan or his son William, both Friends, retained a place there through nearly all the proprietary régime. In early time many members were ministers.
Nothing more clearly shows the entire break down of the line between ministers and laity than the way they exercised indiscriminately all public offices. Whether Quakers or not, the
* As an illustration: Under date of 29th of Fifth month, 1702, Logan writes to Penn: “ I have not much to advise of more than by the last packet arrived, with orders di. rected to thee, or the commander-in-chief of this to proclaim a war, which was accordingly done on the 6th day last, the 24th inst."
+ " By order nine of twelve of my Council are Quakers, the Magistrates in the same proportion, and the Assembly twenty-three Quakers to three churchmen."-Governor Gookin to Secretary, March 16th, 1716-7. “ Papers Relating to the American Church, Pennsylvania,” page 109.
Council was composed of men of attainments and character, and the place was one of honor and usefulness, even after all law-making powers were taken from it.
The Quakers, however, revelled in complete possession of the Assembly from 1682 to 1756. The first meeting at Chester in the former year was to liave consisted of all the freemen of the Province. But the counties sent up only twelve men each, thirty-six from Pennsylvania and thirty-six from Delaware, asking Penn to accept this as a competent legislnture. The Qunkor immigrntion luna not net in very largely, and the Swedes and Dutch already in the country, particularly in the lower counties, had a majority of one in the Assembly. The lines seem to have been drawn on Quaker membership, and in choosing a speaker the absence of two of the non-Quaker members alone enabled Friends to organize it.* Af
ter this there seems to have been no question of ascendency. Friends were elected not infrequently against their own protests. After the separation of the three lower counties, the Assembly came still more into their hands. In 1755 a militia law is thus prefaced : “Whereas this Province was settled by (and a majority of the Assembly have ever since been) of the people called Quakers, etc.” Franklin speaks of them in 1747 as “That wealthy and powerful body of people who have ever since the war governed our clcctions and filled almost every scat in our AsBounlily."* They were partly wided in this liye al somewhat incquitable division of assemblymen which gave a double representation to the three Quaker counties, Philadelphia, Chester and Bucks. It arose in this way. After 1701 it had been decided to constitute the Assembly of four members from each county, and if ever the lower
stated above, says that many l'riends wanted him to take back part of the power he had granted them. But at this date he docs not indicate any intention to do it. The pressure probably became stronger later, for in 1683 he accepted the veto power.
* Letter of William Penn to Jasper Yeates, “ Pennsyl. vania Magazine," Vol. VI., page 469. This letter contains many interesting features concerning Penn's attitude towards the government of his colony. Yeates had evi. dently reproached Penn for securing too much for his own family. Penn calls attention in reply to the fact that he had only three votes in a joint legislature of 272 members, and after telling how near the Quakers were to losing control as
*A Church of England clergyman writes: “We can have no expectation of being a parish while seven-eighths of our Assembly are Quakers."--" Papers Relating to the Church in Pennsylvania,” page 107.
counties separated their quota should be added to the three Pennsylvania counties then in existence. When new counties were added, they came in on the basis of the original numbers. This was excused by the ideas of property representation then prevalent, and on this basis was not unreasonable. It gave, however, double power to the counties which would naturally choose Quaker representatives. In the country districts of these counties there was a Quaker majority probably up to 1740 or 1750. In Philadelphia city there was never a Quaker majority except possibly for a very few years after 1682. In 1702 it has been estimated that the population of the city was equal to that of the country, and that, onethird of the former and two-thirds of the latter were Quakers.* It was about this date, therefore, that they became a minority, and the minority grew smaller by immigration of others with each succeeding year.
The estimates of their number in 1756 vary from one-sixth to one-fourth of the total population. The exact numbers will never be known, as no church cenSUSCs were ever taken.
Though thus in the minority, in 1740 there were only three non-Quaker members of the As. sembly,* and in 1755, before they had themselves taken any measures to give up their seats, twenty-eight of the thirty-six members were Friends. The responsibility for the actions of the Assembly therefore during these years, so far as their religious beliefs affected their duties as legislators, properly belongs to them.
With the exception of the unequal representation, disproportionate as to numbers, among the counties, there is nothing to indicate any improper efforts to retain power in the hands of Friends. Their root principle of denominational equality, never varied from and probably never seriously impeached, would prevent this. $ They
Pennsylvania Magazine,” X., page 291.
+ Pemberton Papers.
I Shepherd, in his “ History of Proprietary Government in Pennsylvania,” makes a natural error when he says (foot-note, page 548): “ The Quakers even went so far as to make up their party ticket at their yearly religious meetings.” Any one familiar with the methods and spirit of a Yearly Meeting would know the impossibility of such an action. The authority for Dr. Shepherd's statement is the following from The Shippen Papers. Edward Shippen writes under date September 19th, 1756: “No ticket is yet
*James Logan. Penn-Logan Correspondence, I., page 102.