Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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BOLLAN, William, lawyer, born in England; died in Massachusetts in 1776. He was educated for the legal profession in England, removed to Massachusetts about 1740, settled in Boston, married a daughter of Governor Shirley in 1743, and became advocate-general. In 1745 he was sent to London as agent of the colony, to secure from the government the repayment of £183,649 advanced by Massachusetts for the Cape Breton expedition, in which mission he succeeded after three years. He was sent to England a second time as agent for the colony, but was dismissed by the general court in 1662, because of his connection with the deposed governor, and of his adherence to the Episcopal form of worship, He still acted as agent of the council, and his popularity in the colony was restored when he obtained from Alderman Beckford in London, and sent over to Massachusetts in 1769. thirty-three letters of Governor Bernard and General Gage calumniating the colonists, for which act he was denounced by Lord North in parliament. In 1775 he wrote in favor of conciliatory measures toward the colonies. John Hancock declared, in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, that there was no man to whom the colonies were more indebted. He published numerous political tracts relating chiefly to American affairs, among which the most important were "The Importance of Cape Breton truly Illustrated" (London, 1746);" Colonise Anglicanae I1lustrati" (1762) ; "The Ancient Right of the English Nation to the American Fishery Examined and Stated" (1764); "The Mutual Interests of Great Britain and the American Colonies Considered" (1765) ; "The Importance of the Colonies in North America and the Interests of Great Britain with regard to them Considered" (1766);" Freedom of Speech and Writing upon Public Affairs Considered" (1766) ; "Epistle from Timoleon" 1768)" "Continued Corruption of Standing Aries (1768)"The Free Briton's Memorial, in Defence of the Right of Election" (1769); and "A Supplemental Memorial, on the Origin of Parliaments, etc." (1770). As agent for the council of the province of Massachusetts, he offered "A Petition to the King in Council, January 26, 1774, with Illustrations intended to Promote the Harmony of Great Britain and her Colonies."
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