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Proprietary interests in the Middle States, as well as that avarice of land which has made upon this Continent so many votaries to mammon, that I sometimes dread the consequences. However, patience, fortitude, and perseverance, with the help of time, will get us over these obstructions.

Thirteen Colonies, under such a form of Government as Connecticut, or one not quite so popular, leagued together in a faithful confederacy, might bid defiance against all the Potentates of Europe, if united against them.

Pray continue to make happy with your favours. Accept of my most cordial wishes for your safety, happiness, and honour. Make my most respectful compliments to the General and the ladies, and the whole family; and believe me to be, with much respect, your most affectionate friend and servant,


To General Gates.


Philadelphia, March 23, 1776.

GENTLEMEN: Your several letters have been duly received, and laid before Congress. I beg leave to acquaint you they are at this time under consideration, and that as soon as any determination is made thereon, you may expect to have it communicated to you.

The necessity of the thing has induced the Congress to come to the enclosed resolution, which I am directed to request you will carry into immediate execution.

I am, gentlemen, your most obedient and humble servant,

JOHN HANCOCK, President.

To the Honourable Committee of Safety of New-Jersey.

In Congress, March 20, 1776.

Resolved, That the Committee of Safety of New-Jersey be desired to remove the Prisoners from Trenton to such place, or places, in that Colony, as may be thought convenient, at a proper distance from the Sea and the Post-Roads, subject to the Regulations formerly made respecting Prisoners.

Resolved, That all Officers, (Prisoners,) who shall refuse to subscribe the Parole ordered by Congress, be committed to Prison.


Philadelphia, March 21, 1776.

SIR: I am to inform you that the Congress have agreed to take your company into the service of the Continent; and as soon as they are mustered, and properly armed and accoutred, they are to enter into pay; which being effected, I am commanded by Congress to direct that you proceed with your company, with all expedition, to the city of New-York, and put yourself under the orders of the officer commanding the Continental Troops there.

I have delivered Colonel Charles Stewart the commissions for your officers; and yours as Captain, I delivered to you. I have also paid into the hands of Colonel Stewart six hundred dollars, to defray the necessary expenses of your company previous to their march; to whom you will please to apply.

I wish you success; and am, sir, your most humble servant,

JOHN HANCOCK, President.

To Captain Thomas Wolverton, of a Company of seventy-six men, in Continental service.


Philadelphia, March 23, 1776.

MY DEAR GENERAL: The great changes which have taken place with you will, I doubt, scarcely leave you time to read a letter; but as it conveys a piece of good news, I will venture to interrupt you for a few moments. I dare say you have heard how troublesome and dangerous the back inhabitants of North-Carolina were growing. General Gage sent some Scotch officers there last summer, who, pretending a disgust to the Ministerial service, went among their countrymen there, and fomented a spirit of disaffection; and when they thought matters Sufficiently ripened, they headed a large body of men, and were marching down to meet the Governour. However, they were met by Colonel Caswell, and totally defeated, about thirty being left dead on the spot, a great number of prisoners taken, and their commander, a Mr. McDonald. The whole party is said to be so crushed and disappointed, that nothing more is to be apprehended from them.

We have no news from Virginia since I wrote you last; no account yet of our fleet; and as no member of Congress expresses any concern on the subject, we begin to suspect they are gone upon some distant enterprise-some conjecture to lay in the way of the East-India ships, a few of whom would soon reimburse us the expense of the war; however, it is all supposition. It has happened, as I expected, that many who were impatient to have Howe driven from Boston, are now alarmed with the apprehension of the seat of war being moved to the Middle Colonies.

General Lee is gone off to Virginia, and we hope will be there in time to meet the troops expected from England. The Congress have at length granted letters of marque; but there is such a difficulty in procuring ammunition, that I imagine little use will be made of them; at least for some time. The Prussian General is made a Brigadier, and ordered to Canada. By some late accounts from England, we are led to expect that the scheme of sending Commissioners will be wholly laid aside. If it should, I think we shall have no reason to regret it, as it does not seem calculated to produce any real benefit.

Adieu, my dear sir. That health and honour may soon attend you is the sincere wish of, my dear General, your most obedient and affectionate humble servant,


To His Excellency General Washington.


Philadelphia, March 23, 1776.

SIR: The many marks of esteem and distinction with which your Excellency honoured me when I was at Cant-bridge, and the kind recommendation you favoured me with, requires the most respectful and lively gratitude.

I now have the pleasure to inform your Excellency that the honourable the Congress have appointed me to the rank of a Brigadier-General, and that my destination is for Canada, where I shall repair immediately; and I pray your Excellency to continue me the honour of your protection.

I am, very respectfully, sir, your most obedient and humble servant,


To His Excellency General Washington.


[Read March 25, 1776.]

In Committee of Safety, New-Jersey, March 23, 1776.

SIR: I am to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of this day’s date, covering a resolution of Congress of the 20th instant. The Committee took the resolution into consideration, and have resolved to remove the officers, now prisoners in this town, to Mount-Holly, eight miles from Burlington, as the most proper place on all accounts. They will there have the opportunity of good accommodation, and be at a distance from the sea, post, and stage-roads.

I am directed to acquaint you that, if Congress have any particular matter for this Committee to carry into execution, they request it may be sent as soon as possible, as the season is fast approaching that requires the members’ attention on their domestick affairs.

By order of the Committee:

I have the honour to be, your most obedient, humble servant,


To the Honourable John Hancock, Esq.


Elizabethtown, March 23, 1776.

DEAR SIR: I enclose you copies of two letters I received this evening from General Washington and Brigadier-General

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