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Precinct rendered the confinement of these persons absolutely necessary.

The Committee of that place, at the time of the commitment of Mr. Doughty, a few months since, declared their readiness to receive our prisoners, but expected we would make provision for their support. In consequence of this, we requested that not only with respect to Mr. Doughty, but any other prisoners we might send them, they would provide for them at the cheapest rate; and the members of this Committee, as individuals, engaged for the payment of it.

As we have no publick moneys, nor any authority to raise them, we shall, without the interposition of Congress, be obliged to defray this expense out of our own pockets. I am therefore directed by the Committee to write to you respecting this matter, with a request to use your endeavours that means may be devised for making the maintenance of these prisoners a publick charge, and that we may no longer remain liable in our private capacities.

Several persons are now in Jail at Kingston, and provided for by order of Congress. We therefore take the liberty of suggesting, as an expedient, that the Committee there may be directed to extend the order to our prisoners. Lester and Doughty possibly can, but Klein certainly cannot sup port himself. The Committee may therefore also be direct ed not to furnish the two former with necessaries, if it should appear that they have estates sufficient for their own subsistence.

When Mr. Doughty was taken into custody, we wrote a similar letter, respecting him, to Congress, and have never received an answer. I must therefore entreat an answer to this, because unless Congress should determine to make provision for supporting our prisoners, we shall be reduced to the necessity of discharging them.

We conceive it will not be expected we should stipulate to defray the expense of this business, or advance moneys for the purpose, without a prospect of being reimbursed. We do not, however, suppose this will be the case, especially as it may with such ease be charged upon the publick fund; and have no doubt but proper steps will be taken to release us from our engagements to the Kingston Committee.

We have not informed you of the particular instances of misconduct charged against these delinquents. How ever, the Committee is ready, upon the least intimation, to furnish such proofs and reasons as we trust will fully justify our conduct. And we have the satisfaction to find that not only the County in general, but even some that are disaffected, approve of the imprisonment of these persons, and that it is the only means of preserving peace in the Precinct.

I remain your very humble servant.

By order of the Precinct Committee:


To the Gentlemen attending from Dutchess County, as Members in the Committee of Safety.


Fort George, April 13, 1776.

DEAR SIR: The lake is open in so many places that I am of opinion you may set out for this place as early as you can. I have received some despatches from Canada, which I enclose you, and by which you will see the necessity of sending a large reinforcement. Please to bring up with you the papers I enclose, as I have no copies of them.

The bearer goes express to Congress and to General Washington.

I am, dear sir, your most obedient, humble servant,


To Dr. Franklin,


[Read April 22, 1776.]

Saratoga, April 13, 1776.

SIR: We have been here some days, waiting for General Schuyler’s orders to proceed, which we have just received, and shall accordingly leave this place to-morrow; though by the advices from Canada, communicated by him to us, and (as we suppose) sent forward to you, I am afraid we shall be able to effect but little there. We had a heavy snow here yesterday, and the waters are so out as to make travelling difficult by land, and there is a strong fresh in the river against the boats, but we shall endeavour to get on as well as we can. We join in respects to the Congress, and to yourself in particular.

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


To the Honourable John Hancock, Esq.


Norwich, April 13, 1776.

SIR: Captain William Wilbur, of Groton, has intimated to me his willingness of serving on board the galley in the character of a master; by what I have heard of his character, and some personal acquaintance, I think him as suitable a person (if your Honour thinks fit to appoint him) as any that is likely to be procured.

I am your Honour’s most obedient, humble servant,


To his Honour the Governour.


Baltimore, April 14, 1776—ten o’clock, P.M.

HONOURABLE SIR: The enclosed copies of letters were just now received by our Committee, by express, from the Council of Safety of Virginia, with a desire that they might be forwarded to you instantly; indeed, the intelligence they contain we think of too much importance to have been delayed a moment. In consequence whereof, we have prevailed on our commanding officer here to appoint Mr. David Plunket, a Lieutenant, in whose prudence and industry we can rely, to wait on you with this; and if your honourable body should think it necessary to take any steps, or give any instructions to the Council of Safety on the occasion, he will wait your commands.

We have the honour to be, with greatest respect, honourable sir, your most obedient servants,

chairman.   WM. BUCHANAN,
vice chairman.   JOHN BOTD,

To the Honourable John Hancock, Esq., President of the Continental Congress, at Philadelphia.

Williamsburgh, April 6, 1776.

GENTLEMEN: We could not suffer a moment to pass before we transmitted the enclosed copies of intercepted letters, addressed by the Secretary of State to the Governour of your Province, which opens the schemes of Administration to us in a more explicit manner than any other intelligence we have been able to procure. We wish you to transmit copies of these letters to Congress without delay.

I am, for and by order of the Committee of Safety of Virginia, gentlemen, your most obedient, humble servant,

John Page, Vice President.

To the Committee of Baltimore, Maryland.

N. B. A certain Mr. Alexander Ross, who was refused a permission by this Committee, has been on board Lord Dunmore’s ship, and was the person intrusted with the care of the enclosed letters. He has escaped from us; but, as we think him inimical to the American cause, he ought to be apprehended.

J. P., V. P.

[Circular.] Whitehall, December 23, 1775,

SIR: The King being determined, in concurrence with his Parliament, to pursue the most vigorous measures for reducing his rebellious subjects in North-America to obedience, and for restoring legal Government, has given the Royal assent to the enclosed act, which I am commanded by his Majesty to transmit to you; and, at the same time, to signify to you his Majesty’s pleasure that you do exhort all persons, upon whom the execution of this law shall depend, to pay a due attention thereto, and to use their best endeavours for carrying the provisions of it into effect; and I trust when his Majesty’s deluded subjects in the Associated Colonies are better apprized of the fatal consequences of the

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