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A Letter from sundry inhabitants of Westmoreland, of the 6th instant, was read:
Ordered, To lie on the table.
A Petition from Doctor Hall Jackson, of the 12th of February last, was presented to Congress, and read.
Ordered, To lie on the table.
The Congress then resumed the consideration of the Instructions to the Commissioners going to Canada; and after some time spent thereon,
Resolved, That the further consideration thereof be postponed till to-morrow.
The Committee to whom the Letter from Colonel Moses Hazen, and the Report of persons appointed to state the account of losses and damages sustained by him in Canada, were referred, brought in their Report, which, being taken into consideration, was agreed to, as follows:
It appears to your Committee that the loss and damage sustained by Colonel Hazen in Canada have not been estimated with sufficient accuracy; that some of the articles enumerated in the inventory are presumed to be overrated, the quantities of several others reducible to exactness in number, weight, or measure, are not ascertained, and the reasons for the knowledge or belief of any of them by the witnesses are not explicit enough in their examination; that, although the grain, grass, and hay, mentioned in the account, are admitted by Colonel Hazen, in his letter, to have been partly destroyed by the Ministerial Troops, the whole value is extended; that the estimate of the crops are so general, it cannot be discovered by what rule they were formed, or to what standard adjusted; that the damages done to the dwelling-house, stone-house, out-houses, barn, and farms, are not particularized or specified; that a considerable part of what a reimbursement is claimed for, is household furniture, wearing apparel, tools, utensils, cables, and anchors, suggested to have been plundered by the troops of the United Colonies, and Canadians who joined them; and your Committee believe that no reparation of the like kind hath yet been made by Congress; and that the profit which might have been made of the mills and houses, if the owner had not been deprived of the use of them, being merely contingent and conjectural, are such as have not usually been made good in similar cases: Whereupon,
Resolved, That the Commissioners who are going to Canada be desired to appoint proper persons to examine, state, and settle an account of the loss and damage Colonel Hazen hath sustained in his property and possessions in Canada by the forces of the United Colonies, and report the same, with any special matters they may think fit, to Congress; annexing to their Report the estimates, examinations of the witnesses, and other papers relating thereto.
Resolved, That if any of the gentlemen appointed Field-Officers in the four Battalions raising in New- York for the defence of that Colony, are provided for in Canada, they be directed to continue there, exercising the offices to which they are appointed; and that others be elected in their room in the four Battalions aforesaid; and that such of them as are not provided for in Canada, be directed immediately to repair to their respective Battalions.
The matters to this day referred being postponed,
Adjourned to ten oclock, to-morrow.
Wednesday, March 13, 1776.
A Letter from the Committee of Essex, in New-Jersey, of the 7th, and a Letter from Captain J. Macpherson, of the 12th, were laid before Congress, and read:
Resolved, That an Order for 1000 Dollars be drawn on the Treasurers, in favour of Samuel Fairlamb, Contractor for supplying Colonel Waynes Battalion with Rations, he to be accountable.
Resolved, That the Bills drawn by the Treasurers of North-Carolina, for the use of the Continental Troops in that Colony, be paid.
Resolved, That the Secret Committee be directed to supply the Colony of Maryland with five hundred pounds of Powder, for the use of the inhabitants of Cecil County.
Resolved, That a Committee of seven be appointed to inquire and report the best ways and means of raising the necessary supplies to defray the expenses of the War for the present year, over and above the emission of Bills of Credit.
The Members chosen, Mr. Johnson, Mr. Duane, Mr. Hewes, Mr. Gerry, Mr. R. Morris, Mr. Ward, and Mr. Wythe.
The Committee of Claims reported, that there is due, to sundries, for expenses incurred at the Oration in memory of General Montgomery, the sum of 94.3 Dollars; and that the same ought to be paid to Doctor Franklin.
Ordered, That the same be paid.
The Committee to whom the Memorial from the Indian Traders at Montreal was referred, brought in their Report.
Agreeable to the Order of the Day, the Congress resolved itself into a Committee of the Whole, to take into consideration the Memorial from the Merchants, Traders, and others, inhabitants of Philadelphia, the Memorial of Edmund Custis, the Letters from the Committees of Accomack and Northampton, the Letters from General Washington, and the state of the Trade of the United Colonies.
And after some time spent thereon, the President resumed the chair; and Mr. Ward reported, that the Committee had taken into consideration some of the matters referred to them, but not having come to any resolution, they desired him to move for leave to sit again.
Resolved, That this Congress will, to-morrow, resolve itself into a Committee of the Whole, to take into their further consideration the matters heretofore referred to them.
Mr. W. Livingston moved for leave to bring in a Resolution for appointing a Fast; which was granted.
Resolved, That the Marine Committee be directed to purchase the Armed Vessel now in the River Delaware, on the most reasonable terms, for the service of the Continent, and that her destination be left to the said Committee.
Resolved, That the expenses of the Horses of Aids-de-Camp, when travelling in the publick service, be charged to the account of the United Colonies.
Adjourned to ten oclock, to-morrow.
Thursday, March 14, 1776.
The Committee appointed to confer with General Lee respecting the defence of New- York, brought in their Report, which was read.
Resolved, That eight thousand Men be ordered for the defence of the Colony of New- York.
Resolved, That Orders issue to Colonel Irvine, Colonel Shee, and Colonel Magaw, of the Pennsylvania Troops, and to Colonel Dayton, of the New-Jersey Troops, to march immediately, with their respective Battalions, to New-York, and to put themselves under the direction of the commanding officer there.
A Letter from General Prescott, of the 14th, was laid before Congress, and read.
Resolved, That the Committee on Prisoners be directed to confer with General Prescott on the subject of his Letter, and report to Congress.
Resolved, That it be recommended to the several Assemblies, Conventions, and Committees or Councils of Safety of the United Colonies, immediately to cause all persons to be disarmed in their respective Colonies who are notoriously disaffected to the cause of America, or who have not associated, and shall refuse to associate, to defend, by arms, these United Colonies against the hostile attempts of the British Fleets and Armies; and to apply the Arms taken from such persons in each respective Colony, in the first place to the arming the Continental Troops raised in said Colony; in the next, to the arming such Troops as are raised by the Colony for its own defence; and the residue to be applied to the arming the Associators; that the Arms, when taken, be appraised by indifferent persons, and such as are applied to the arming the Continental Troops be paid for by the Congress, and the residue by the respective Assemblies, Conventions, or Councils or Committees of Safety.
Ordered, That a copy of the foregoing Resolve be transmitted, by the Delegates of each Colony, to their respective Assemblies, Conventions, or Councils or Committees of Safety.