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your views to a greater number, in case of necessity, is submitted to the wisdom of your Board.

The signals which I intended should convey the first notice of the approach of an enemy’s fleet, you will find in the enclosed paper; but if you will please to appoint a Committee of your body, I will desire the Brigadiers Sullivan, Greene, and Lord Stirling, to meet them, and adopt a better, if a better can be thought of. New-Jersey is already advertised of these signals.

If the four battalions which were directed to be raised under the command of the Colonels McDougall, Clinton, Ritzema, and Wynkoop, are placed under the immediate care of the Committee of Safety for this Colony by Congress, I should be glad to know how far it is conceived that my powers over them extend, or whether I have any at all. Sure I am that they cannot be subjected to the direction of both; and I shall have no small reluctance in assuming an authority I am not vested with powers to execute; nor will my solicitude (further than as a well-wisher to the cause) on account of arms for, and returns of, these regiments continue, if they are not considered as within the line of my command. It becomes, therefore, my indispensable duty to be ascertained of this matter, and to know whether these regiments cannot be ordered out of the Colony, for instance to New-Jersey, if necessity should require it.

It would give me singular pleasure to advance you the sum asked for; but the low state of our cash, and heavy demands upon the Paymaster, render it altogether impracticable at this time. The Quartermaster and Commissary are both wanting money, and cannot be supplied; nor can General Ward get what he had sent for to pay the five regiments to the Eastward, till a fresh supply arrives, of which Congress is informed. General Heath, since my arrival here, has obtained a warrant upon the Paymaster for money to replace the sum which your Committee kindly lent him; and, to the best of my recollection, General Thompson told me that he also meant to do the same. These matters shall be inquired into.

With great respect, I remain, gentlemen, your most obedient, and most humble servant,


To Committee of Safety, New-York.


New-York, April 27, 1776.


Free Citizen” presents his best compliments to you, and informs you that, by Lord Drummond’s orders, there were sent to the store of Hugh Wallace, next door to John Morton’s dwelling, four cases, which were very heavy, and hooped with iron, containing military stores; the cartman could only carry two at once. I am of opinion there were more than what I saw; therefore please to inform yourself further, as you have it in your power, being the Chairman of the Committee and a good citizen.

To Mr. Garret Abeel, Chairman of the City Committee.


New-Utrecht, April 27, 1776.

I send you this, by express, to inform that at dawn of day this morning a small sloop came down the river; the sentry on Staten-Island hailed her, as also those on our side; but she would not come to; each of the sentries fired several guns at her, which she disregarded, and passed under a smart breeze to the Asia. man-of-war. Our lower sentry informs me that when she came near the Asia she hoisted a blue flag, and they sent out a barge to meet her. I have just observed her going to the Hook. Where she came from I cannot learn, but imagine from New- York. She bore off from our shore so much it was impossible we could stop her passage


To His Excellency the Commander-in-Chief, New- York.


Fort Montgomery, April 27, 1776.

GENTLEMEN: After sundry applications to Captain Berrien for cash, by letter from him this day he informs us that it must now be obtained by a draft on the Provincial Congress; and at the same time informs us that there is no money in the Treasury.

A state of what business we have done, and the necessary expense we have gone into, will naturally show the necessity we are in for cash. We have erected one large store-house, forty feet by thirty-four; one barrack, eighty feet by twenty, two stories high, with a cellar under the half of it; a bakehouse, sixteen feet by fourteen; a guard-house, twenty feet by fourteen; a large necessary, for soldiers; all which are now completely finished: a barrack, for officers, commissary, &c., forty feet by twenty, to be raised this day; a magazine, twelve by eighteen feet, walls eight feet thick, so far complete as turning the arch on the top will finish it. We have, besides this, timber for another large barrack, eighty by twenty feet, which will be the last we intend building; besides this, we have the timber and plank for the platform of the battery. We have been obliged to send to Albany for two loads of boards and plank. And the boatman’s wages for vessels to quarter the soldiers in, besides all the lime and nails which we have had engaged in the country, have been necessary articles; all which have amounted to a considerable sum, and we are daily dunned for cash, and have it not in our power to satisfy these demands on us, without your assistance. We have, however, already advanced one hundred pounds, of our own cash, to such persons as have been most in necessity.

From the above state, of facts, you will easily conceive that we must soon have a supply of cash, as not only the necessary materials for the buildings, but many workmen, want their pay; we therefore desire you will furnish us with one thousand pounds, in cash, and please to pay it to the bearer hereof, Captain John Berrien, and charge it to us, for the use of the Continent at this post.

The battery goes on pretty well, considering the assistance we have had. We have one line for mounting cannon complete, except the platform, which in a day or two will be finished. Another line, calculated to mount seven cannon, the parapet complete, and the merlons above half up; but we seldom make out more than between eighty and ninety labourers per day, although we have part of five companies here—four Continental and one Minute company—but two of them only are full, and they are Captain Belknap’s and Captain Billings’s; Captain Swartwout’s has now about twenty-two, and Captain Rosekrans’s forty men; Captain Drake’s Minute company is reduced from fifty-seven to thirty-three men, by means of his men inlisting into the Continental companies. Numbers of the men are sick, deserted, and gone home on parole, which reduces the labourers to the above number; and those that do turn out as labourers, for want of proper officers to command them, do but little, they conceiving themselves by no means under the command of the Commissioners. The little time we had Captain Gushing to command here, the men laboured well. Captain Billings, with his company, is ordered to join his regiment, and sets out on Monday next; when he is gone we shall have but a small party for labourers. I am of opinion that, in case we could have to turn out every day one hundred men, and the men under such command as to work faithfully eight: hours in a day, we could complete the whole work to be done here in about six or seven weeks, at farthest, from this date; that is, by that time the batteries would be complete to mount thirty-five or forty cannon, and the buildings will be complete in less time. But cash we must have, and beg you will furnish Captain Berrien with it as soon as possible.

I am, gentlemen, with due respect, your most humble servant,

THOMAS PALMER, for self.

Mr. Gilbert Livingston is now in the country on necessary business for the use of this garrison. To the Committee of Safety, New-York.


Albany, April 27, 1776.

SIR: I arrived here on Thursday, and the whole party got up yesterday. Colonel Greaton’s Regiment marched yesterday, and I have ordered Colonel Patterson’s to follow him to-day, Bond’s to-morrow, and Poor’s on Monday; but as there are not more boats than will transport

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