Document Type

Trial Proceeding

Publication Date


Article Footnote

Article 1, footnote 24

Book Footnote

Chapter 2, footnote 1


In 1714, Charles Banfild was an appointed constable for the town of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. One of his duties was to collect taxes from the townspeople and remit them to the Selectmen. ... As he explained to the New Hampshire Superior Court in mid-August of that year, he used his best endeavours to collect but the “people would not pay.” And as fast as he hauled the delinquents before the local Justices of the Peace (“J.P.s”) for non-payment, just as fast did the J.P.s discharge them. This process was interrupted only by his own imprisonment for nonpayment of the taxes to the Selectmen, which he had been unable to end by posting bond so that he might return to his collection efforts.

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