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voluntarily signed and handed to them by the said William Sitgreaves and Peter Ozeas, and at the same time resolve that they esteem those papers as acknowledgments satisfactory to this Committee.

Extract from the Minutes:

SAMUEL C. MORRIS, Secretary.

To the Committee of Inspection and Observation of the City and Liberties of PHILADELPHIA.

Philadelphia, April 2, 1776.

GENTLEMEN: I am very sorry that I have exceeded the limits prescribed by you for the price of coffee. Had I apprehended that advancing one penny per pound more than you had fixed would have been considered as injurious to the publick welfare, I should not have demanded it. As I have thereby given offence, I take this method of acknowledging my error, and to declare that, for the future, I will avoid every occasion of uneasiness to my fellow-citizens. Should you think it necessary to publish what has past on this subject, I request you will, at the same time, let this acknowledgment accompany it, and you will thereby oblige, gentlemen, your most humble servant,


To the Committee of Inspection and Observation of the City and Liberties of PHILADELPHIA.

Philadelphia, April 2, 1776.

GENTLEMEN: The mistake which I have committed, in having bought and sold two barrels of coffee at a price higher than that limited by you, has given me extreme pain. Had I adverted to the fatal consequences of such conduct, the regard I have for the publick welfare, and the interest I have taken in the present struggle for liberty, would have wholly prevented my having any share in so destructive a measure. I now, voluntarily, offer to the publick, through this Committee, my sincere acknowledgment for this error, and declare the utmost readiness to acquiesce in any measure which may assure the publick of my exact conformity, in future, to such regulations as this Committee may judge to be for the publick benefit; being fully satisfied of their unbiased attention to the publick good. If this Committee should judge it necessary to publish my case to the world, I shall hold myself extremely obliged if they shall judge it proper to suffer this declaration and acknowledgment to appear at the same time, and order it accordingly.



Upper Barracks, March 29, 1776.

GENTLEMEN: We are sorry to give you this trouble, but being in some measure led to imagine you have forgotten us, by our long confinement without having any hearing, and being fully conscious of not having acted in any shape inimical to the interests of the country, therefore should esteem it as a particular favour if you will be kind enough to order us before you, as we make no doubt we shall give every satisfaction that you will desire with respect to our conduct.

We remain, gentlemen, your most obedient, humble servants,


To the Committee of Safety, New-York.


To His Excellency GEORGE WASHINGTON, Esq., General and Commander-in-Chief of the Forces of the United AMERICAN Colonies.

May it please your Excellency:

When the liberties of America were attacked by the violent hand of oppression; when Troops, hostile to the rights of humanity, invaded this Colony, seized our capital, and spread havock and. destruction around it; when our virtuous sons were murdered, and our houses destroyed by the Troops of Britain; the inhabitants of this and the other American Colonies, impelled by self-preservation and the love of freedom, forgetting their domestick concerns, determined resolutely and unitedly to oppose the sons of tyranny.

Convinced of the vast importance of having a gentleman of great military accomplishments, to discipline, lead, and conduct the forces of the Colonies, it gave us the greatest satisfaction to hear that the honourable Congress of the United Colonies had made choice of a gentleman thus qualified, who, leaving the pleasures of domestick and rural life, was ready to undertake the arduous task. And your nobly declining to accept the pecuniary emoluments annexed to this high office, fully evinced to us that a warm regard to the sacred rights of humanity, and sincere love to your country, solely influenced you in the acceptance of this important trust.

From your acknowledged abilities as a soldier, and your virtues in publick and private life, we had the most pleasing hopes; but the fortitude and equanimity so conspicuous in your conduct; the wisdom of your councils; the mild, yet strict government of the Army; your attention to the civil Constitution of this Colony; the regard you have at all times shown for the lives and health of those under your command; the fatigues you have with cheerfulness endured; the regard you have shown for the preservation of our Metropolis; and the great address with which our military operations have been conducted, have exceeded our most sanguine expectations, and demand the warmest returns of gratitude.

The Supreme Ruler of the Universe having smiled on our arms, and crowned your labours with remarkable success, we are now, without that effusion of blood we so much wished to avoid, again in the quiet possession of our capital. The wisdom and prudence of those movements which have obliged the enemy to abandon our Metropolis will ever be remembered by the inhabitants of this Colony.

May you still go on, approved by Heaven, revered by all good men, and dreaded by those tyrants who claim their fellow-men as their property. May the United Colonies be defended from slavery by your victorious arms. May they still see their enemies flying before you. And (the deliverance of your country being effected) may you, in retirement, enjoy that peace and satisfaction of mind, which always attends the good and great. And may future generations, in the peaceful enjoyment of that freedom, the exercise of which your sword shall have established, raise the richest and most lasting monuments to the name of Washington.

His Excellency’s Answer.

To the Honourable Council and Representatives of the Province of Massachusetts-Bay.

GENTLEMEN: I return you my most sincere and hearty thanks for your polite Address; and feel myself called upon, by every principle of gratitude, to acknowledge the honour you have done me in this testimonial of your approbation of my appointment to the exalted station I now fill; and, what is more pleasing, of my conduct in discharging its important duties.

When the Councils of the British nation had formed a plan for enslaving America, and depriving her sons of their most sacred and invaluable privileges, against the clearest remonstrances of the Constitution, of justice, and of truth; and to execute their schemes, had appealed to the sword; I esteemed it my duty to take a part in the contest, and more especially, when called thereto by the unsolicited suffrages of the Representatives of a free People; wishing for no other reward than that arising from a conscientious discharge of the important trust, and that my services might contribute to the establishment of freedom and peace, upon a permanent foundation, and merit the applause of my countrymen, and every virtuous citizen.

Your professions of my attention to the civil Constitution of this Colony, whilst acting in the line of my department, also demand my grateful thanks. A regard to every Provincial institution, where not incompatible with the common interest, I hold a principle of duty and of policy, and shall ever form a part of my conduct. Had I not learned this before, the happy experience of the advantages resulting from a friendly intercourse with your honourable body, their ready and willing concurrence to aid and to counsel whenever called upon in cases of difficulty and emergency, would have taught me the useful lesson.

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