236 , SUSSEX SMUGGLERS.
It was in Romney Marsh that Hunt, in the year 1696, ran cargoes of Lyons silk and Valenciennes lace sufficient to load thirty pack-horses; and, under cover of these proceedings, kept a house of resort for men of high consideration among the Jacobites—of " earls and barons, knights and doctors of divinity"—and established a clandestine post to London, and frequent communications, by means of privateers, with the Court of St. Germains.*
The vigilance necessarily used during the next war, to prevent these clandestine communications with the enemy, will be best seen by the following account of some persons, as well English as French,-]- seized by the riding officers appointed for the guard of the coast of Kent and Sussex, coming out of France; and of some other particulars relating to correspondence, &c, on those coasts, since her Majesty's declaration of war in May, 1702, to December 20, 1703 :— July 25, 1702.—Some French letters sent from a
privateer, and< others found in the beach near
Seaford, all delivered to the Secretary Hedge's
office. Oct. 8.—Near Seaford, two persons seized and sent to
the Secretary. Mr. Pelham and J. Goldham. Jan. 4, 1703.—At Newhaven, five Frenchmen and a
boy taken. Hawkins. Mar. 5.—At Felpham, two French prisoners. Parratt. May 3.—A Frenchman, from Calais, with letters and
papers, under Beachy Head in the night, sent for.
Messenger Fowler. May 6.—Three French prisoners at Pagham.
* See Lord Macaulay's " History of England," vol. iv., p. 650. t Egexton MS., 929, p. 38.