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appoint him to such vacant commission that may happen, as your Honours, in wisdom, may think fit.

And your Petitioner, as in duty bound, shall every pray, &c.


To Nathaniel Woodhull, Esq., President of the Provincial Congress, New-York.


HONOURABLE GENTLEMEN: I herewithin enclose you a return made to me respecting the choice of an Ensign to Captain Jacob Concklin’s Company, where they have, by a plurality of voices, elected John Crowel Ensign to the aforesaid company, in lieu and stead of one Roger Barton, who was first elected and commissioned, but since has acted inimical to the good cause we are contending for with our mother country, by inlisting in the Ministerial service, and is now confined in jail. I therefore pray that you will favour the aforesaid Crowel with a commission as Ensign, as soon as possible; and am, gentlemen, your very humble servant,



Bridewell, Monday, April 1, 1776.

SIR: I take this opportunity of doing myself the honour of acquainting you with my disagreeable situation, having been a close prisoner ever since I have been in New-York. I must do the New-England people justice, under whose care I have been, that they behaved extremely well. Since their departure, the Yorkers took possession of the barracks, kept me much closer confined, and on Saturday afternoon gave me three days’ allowance that was due, of pork and bread only, and conducted me safe to Bridewell. Since, I understand, my allowance is to be five pence sterling per day—Bridewell allowance. I am beholden to the goodness of the jailer for my bed and blanket, or else I believe I might perish.

I shall not, sir, trouble you with a detail of all my misfortunes, as they are in no wise pleasant, but take the liberty to subscribe myself, your obedient servant,


To Captain Vandeput, of his Majesty’s Ship Asia.

P. S. King Sears, on my first arrival, called me rascal, and pushed me on to jail with his sword. As to the sailors, I am sorry to inform you they are gone to Philadelphia to go on board the privateer.


New-York, April 1, 1776.

SIR: A sloop is arrived here from Albany, with a number of women and children and baggage, taken at St. John’s, and sent here by General Schuyler, in their way to New-Brunswick. The Captain of the sloop is fearful of going to New-Brunswick, as, in his way back, he may be stopped and detained by the men-of-war. It will be proper, therefore, to obtain, from Captain Vandeput a free pass for the sloop to and from Brunswick, which, no doubt, he will readily grant, as it obtains every convenience for those prisoners, who must otherwise undergo a fatiguing march by land; and I must beg the favour of your Committee of Safety to take the management of this matter.

I am, sir, with respect, your most humble servant,

W. HEATH, Brigadier-General.

To the Chairman of the Committee of Safety, New-York.


Head-Quarters, Montreal, April 1, 1776.

SIR: General Booster left this place for Quebeck, the 27th last month. He has honoured me, though unequal to the task, with the command of this District. I shall, therefore, to the utmost of my abilities, do for the best; and I conceive it my duty, as well as inclination, to inform you of every material circumstance as they occur to me, as well as to give you a particular account, from time to time, of this important District; and perhaps it may not be thought amiss if I add my own ideas of the whole country, and affairs in general. You are not unacquainted with the friendly disposition of the Canadians when General Montgomery first penetrated into the country. The ready assistance which they gave on all occasions, by men, carriages, or provisions, was most remarkable, even when he was before Quebeck; many Parishes offered their service in the reduction of that fortress, which was at that time thought unnecessary. But his most unfortunate fate, added to other incidents, has caused such a change in their disposition, that we no longer look upon them as friends, but, on the contrary, waiting an opportunity to join our enemies. That no observations of my own may remain obscure, I beg leave to observe, that I think the clergy (or guardians of the souls, and conductors of the bodies) of those enthusiasts have been neglected, perhaps in some instances ill used. Be that as it will, they are unanimous, though privately, against our cause; and I have too much reason to fear many of them, with other people of some consequence, have carried on a correspondence the whole winter with General Carleton in Quebeck, and are now plotting our destruction. The peasantry in general have been ill used; they have in some instances been dragooned, with the point of the bayonet, to furnish wood for the garrison, at a lower rate than the current price; carriages, and many other articles furnished, for which certificates were given, not legible and without signature—the one half of consequence rejected by the Quartermaster-General. It is true, they have been promised payment, from time to time; yet they look upon such promises as vague, their labour and property lost, and the Congress and the United Colonies as bankrupt; and (what is a more material point) they have not seen sufficient force in the country to protect them. These matters furnish very strong arguments to be made use of by our enemies.

To take a view of our little Army here, I have pretty good information that our strength in camp before Quebeck did not, on the 18th of March, much exceed that of the day after General Montgomery’s fall. General Arnold had at that time about four hundred men in a small-pox Hospital. Neither order nor subordination prevails, and of course shortly no soldiers. On the 15th of this month, those who wintered in the country are free, and, in my opinion, neither art, craft, nor money, will prevail on any of them to reinlist to serve in Canada. Colonel Livingston’s Regiment, consisting of about two hundred, will be free on the same day; very few, if any of them, will re-engage. Of my intended regiment I have about two hundred and fifty. The want of money obliges me to stop; where I shall remain until matters take a change, if ever, in our favour, as not a man more will now engage, and those which I have inlisted will go to the right about in case the Canadians in general join against us; at least such is my opinion. With respect to the better sort of people, both French and English, seven-eighths are Tories, who would wish to see our throats cut, and perhaps would readily assist in doing it.

The taking of Quebeck is altogether casual. The keeping of the country, according to the present appearance of affairs, is totally against us. No preparation has, is, or can be made to guard the river, for a very good reason—no money or men of skill to do it; the whole country left without any other kind of law than that of the arbitrary and despotick power of the sword in the hands of the several commanding officers—too frequently abused in all cases of this nature.

You may remember, sir, in a conversation with you, at Albany, I urged the necessity of sending immediately to Canada, able Generals, a respectable Army, a Committee of Congress, a suitable supply of hard cash, a printer, &c. Indeed, I had before represented those measures in person to Congress—at least to the Committee of Congress—and we have since been flattered, from time to time, with one or all those essentials.

The Savages hereabouts are cool; they keep aloof from us; we are to expect little or no friendship from them, and, indeed, little or no precaution has been taken for that purpose. It is expected by some that numbers will come from the interior country, and fall on our frontiers, early in the spring.

Enclosed I transmit you extracts from some private letters, which accidently came to hand from the camp before Quebeck. I believe the contents, as the news has come to

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