regarding the conduct of the colony of Massachusetts Bay. Thomas Morton and Philip Ratcliffe had been banished from that colony and sent back to England. Sir Christopher Gardiner, also, after a period of troubled relations with the authorities there, had taken ship for England. These men, acting in conjunction with Gorges and Mason, whose claims had already been before the Council, presented petitions embodying their grievances. On December 19, 1632, the Council listened to the reading of these petitions and to the presentation of a "relation" drawn up by Gardiner. After long debate "upon the whole carriage of the plantation of that country," it appointed a committee of twelve members, called the Committee on the New England Plantations, with the Archbishop of York at its head, "to examine how the patents for the said plantations have been granted." This committee had power to call "to their assistance such other persons as they shall think fit," "to examine the truth of the aforesaid information or any othe
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