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lefs inhabitants to every misery from the inclemency of the winter; and not only urging favages to invade the country, but inftigating negroes to murder their mafters: And whereas the parliament of G. Britain hath lately paffed an act, affirming thefe colonies to be in open rebellion; forbidding all trade and commerce with the inhabitants thereof, until they fhall accept pardons, and fubmit to defpotic rule; declaring their property, where-ever found upon the water, liable to feizure and confifcation; and enacting, that what had been done there, by virtue of the royal authority, were juft and lawful acts, and fhall be fo deemed: From all which it is manifeft, that the iniquitous fcheme concerted to deprive them of the liberty they have a right to by the laws of nature and the English conftitution, will be pertinaciously purfued: It being, therefore, neceffary to provide for their defence and fecurity, and juftifiable to make reprisals upon their enemies, and otherwife to annoy them, according to the laws and ufages of nations: The Congress, trusting that fuch of their friends in G. Britain (of whom, it is confeffed, there are many intitled to applaufe and gratitude for their patriotism and benevolence, and in whofe favour a difcrimination of property cannot be made) as fhall fuffer by captures, will impute it to the author of our common calamities, do declare and refolve as followeth; to wit,
Refolved, That the inhabitants of thefe colonies be permitted to fit out armed veffels, to cruise on the enemies of thefe United Colonies.
Refolved, That all ships and other veffels, their tackle, apparel, and furniture, and all goods, wares, and merchandifes, belonging to any inhabitant or inhabitants of G. Britain, taken on the high feas, or between high and low water mark, by any armed vessel fitted out by any private person or perfons, and to whom commiffions fhall be granted, and, being libelled and profecuted in any court erected for the trial of maritime affairs in any of these colonies, fhall be deemed and adjudged to be lawful prizes, and, after deducting and paying the wages of the feamen and mariners on board of fuch captures as are merchant ships and veffels fhall be intitled to, according to the terms of their contracts, until the time of the adjudication, hall be condemned to and for the ufe
Refolved, That all veffels, their tackle, apparel, and furniture, and cargoes, belonging to inhabitants of G. Britain, as aforefaid, and all vessels which may be employed in carrying fupplies to the minifterial armies, which hall happen to be taken near the fhores of any of these colonies, by the people of the country, or detachments from the army, shall be deemed lawful prize; and the court of admiralty within the faid colony is required, on condemnation thereof, to adjudge, that all charges and expences which may attend the capture and trial, be firft paid out of the monies arifing from the fales of the prize, and the remainder equally divided among all those who fhall have been actually engaged and employed in taking the faid prize. Provided, That where any detachments of the army fhall have been employed as aforefaid, their part of the prize-money fhall be diftributed among them in proportion
Governor, with his family, left this place laft Sunday night, and went on board the Scarborough, lying at Tybee."
"Savannah, Feb. 21. The following is a copy of the Governor's letter, which was read on Friday laft at a meeting of the inhabitants of the town and district of Savannah.
portion to the pay of the officers and foldiers fo employed.
CHARLES THOMSON, Sec."
Punishments have been inflicted on perfons who have difregarded the refofution of the congrefs relating to its bills of credit. [133.]
"London, April 20. A correfpondent has fent us a genuine anecdote, by the help of which, we imagine, the good people of G. Britain may be enabled to form an eftimate of the prefent ftate of paper-credit and perfonal freedom in North America. A gentleman, a native of Old England, who was on the eve of his departure from North America, had a horfe which he wanted fpeedily to difpofe of: He therefore advertised it in the news-papers to be fold for ten British guineas, or twenty guineas Congrefs paper money. In confequence of which, the congrefs have voted him inimical to the liberties of North America; and he will, in all probability, end his days in a prifon. Our correfpondent adds, if this be American liberty, 'tis liberty with a vengeance ! ! !"
"On his Majefty's fervice. To the Hon. James Mackay, Efq; and the reft of the Members of his Majefty's Council, at Savannah.
On board his Majesty's ship Scarborough, at Cockfpur, Feb. 13. 1776. Honourable Gentlemen, AFTER using my best endeavours for upwards of three weeks to prevail on thofe in whofe hands the prefent ruling powers are, that the commanders of his Majefty's fhips here might obtain affurances, that they might come to town, and have a free intercourfe with me, without receiving any infults from the people affembled in and about town; alfo that the King's fhips might be supplied with provifions, on paying the full price or value of it; and finding that the laft meffage relative to these matters, which I defired the reprefentatives of the town of Savannah to deliver to the perfons exercifing those powers, was fo lightly treated, and little regarded, as that, although delivered on Tuesday morning the 6th inftant, yet I received no kind of answer to it for five days, or did I understand whether it was meant to give me any answer or not; and well knowing that it was effential to his Majefty's fervice, and the welfare of this province, that I fhould have an interview with the King's officers here: for thefe reafons, and many others which you were made acquainted with, and approyed of, I determined in all events to at tempt coming down here; where I ar rived fafe at three o'clock yesterday morning. And, after having examined and duly weighed and confidered my feveral letters from England, and General Howe at Bofton, and after having had a full converfation with his Majefty's officers here, I have the great fatisfaction to be able to affirm, from the best authority, that the forces now here will not commit any hoftilities against this province, although full fufficient to reduce and overcome every oppofition that could be attempted to be made; and that nothing is meant, or wanted, but a friendly intercourfe, and a fupply of fresh provifions.
"London, May 18. In January last, a trader at New York imported a cargo from the West Indies, which he expect
ed would have turned to good account ; but when the money came due he was offered continental paper-currency. Not approving it, he demanded a return of his goods; which was refufed; and he was taken before fome of the felf-conceited rulers; who gave him his choice, to take the currency, or be fent for a foldier. Refuting ftill to take it, he was accordingly fent to ferve at Maffachufet's-bay but though he did not like his fituation, he was still more difgufted at his officers; the captin of the company in which he was to ferve being a tripeman, the lieutenants a boxmaker and a jobbing farrier, and the enfign a convict from England, who had been on his travels about four years. The injured trader, therefore, took the first opportunity to defert, got to Bofton, and imbarked on board the fleet when they left that place."
"London, May 31. The congrefs have feized the books, and fhut up the ftores, of feveral Quakers at Philadelphia, who were capital traders, but who were unwilling to accept the congrefspaper in payment of their goods."
"Savannah, in Georgia, Feb. 14. The
provifions. This may be entirely relied upon; this his Majefty's officers have an undoubted right to expect, and what they infift upon; and this I not only now folemnly require, in his Majesty's name, but also as (probably) the best friend the people of Georgia have, advise them with out the leaft hefitation to comply with; or it may not be in my power to infure them the continuance of the peace and quietude they now have, if it may be called fo.
His Majefty has been graciously plea fed to grant me leave to return to England; and (whatever may be thought) my regard for the province and people is fach, that I cannot avoid (and poffibly for the last time) exhorting the people to fave themselves and their pofterity from that total ruin and deftruction which (al, though they may not, yet) I muft clearly fee is at the threshold of their doors; and I cannot leave them without again warning them, in the most earnest and friendly manner, to defift from their prefent plans and refolutions. It is ftill in their power; and if they will enable me to do it, I will (as far as I can) engage to give, and endeavour to obtain for them, full pardon and forgiveness for all paft crimes and offences: and this conjure them to confider well, and moft feriously of, before it is too late. But, let things happen as they may, be it remembered, that I this day, in the King's name, offer the people of Georgia the olive-branch, that most desirable object, and ineftimable bleffing, the return of peace and happiness to them and their pofterity.
Capt. Barclay has defired me to notify, that he is willing and ready to give every affiftance in his power to the captains of all fuch merchant-fhips as may be legally cleared out, to enable them to proceed on their refpective voyages. I am alfo to acquaint you, that the detention of the fchooner on Friday or Saturday laft proceeded entirely from a mistake by the officer who commanded the armed floop, and that, if the owner will fend down, the schooner will not only be delivered up, but any reasonable price paid for the damaged rice that was on board, part of which has been used to feed hogs and poultry; or they may take it away again. I am also to mention, that the fame armed floop will be fent up to-morrow to Four-mile-point, in order to get fresh water, and for no other purpofe. VOL, XXXVIII.
This letter, which I confider as of the utmoft confequence and importance to the whole people of Georgia, I must defire you will be pleafed to communicate to the congrefs, if fitting; and if not, to thofe who are called the council of safety; and especially to the inhabitants of the town and province in general; and acquaint them, that I fhall expect their full and clear anfwer to every part of it in a reasonable time.
I am, with perfect efteem, Gentlemen, your most obedient and faithful fervant, JA. WRIGHT.”
The Answer of the Congress to the Governor's letter, addressed to the Members of his Majesty's Council.
“Savannah, Feb. 17. 1776. "GENTLEMEN,
THE letter which you laid before Congrefs from his Excellency the Governor, who fuddenly and unexpectedly left us, has been confidered with all that attention which the ferious nature of the fub-. ject demanded. On the one hand, we feel the most inexpreffible reluctance and pain, in being obliged to confider thofe as enemies whom we but lately loved as friends and fellow-citizens; and on the other, we find ourselves neceffitated by the laws of felf-preservation and defence, in fome measure to regulate our conduct by that idea.- His Excellency acquaints you, that a very confiderable force, both by fea and land, is arrived at Cockspur, and it seems no addition to both is daily expected; but that, for the prefent, they do not mean to commit any act of hoftility against this province. What their views there are, we are much at a lofs to determine; fince the appearance of fuch an armament, certainly implies a defign against fomewhere. Perhaps their firft and immediate operation may not be againft this province; but are we not to confider ourfelves as a part of the whole? and is not this very errand to enforce thofe meafures which we have united to oppofe?. Under this view we appeal to all mankind, whether it would not be treachery, and a mean desertion of the caufe, were we voluntarily (let the confequences be what they may) to contribute any thing to their affiftance which we can with-hold? You may believe us, Gentlemen, when we tell you, we want words to exprefs the concern we feel at the fituation of this province; we know the inconveniencies that muft arife from
David Matthews, Efq; received a letter from Governor Tryon, dated, Ship Duchess of Gordon, North river, New York, March 16. 1776, viz.
from a diffolution of order and government, and could only chufe fuch a ftate as the alternative of a greater evil: our concern is also much increased, when, as a confequence, we find ourselves drove to the neceffity of setting up a diftinction between Englishmen and Americans, and of denying the former what we would cheerfully grant the latter. It would be needlefs and endless to enumerate the measures that have brought on this fituation; fuffice it to fay, that on our parts we have defired, and do now defire, nothing but the rights of Englifhmen; and are firmly and obftinately determined to facrifice every thing to the purchase of them. By his Excellency's letter to you we find two things are required by the commander of the forces below; friendly intercourse, and supply of fresh provifions. As to the former, when you reflect upon the jealoufies and fufpicions that have taken poffeffion of the mind on both fides of the queftion, you will readily agree with us, that it is not only impoffible, but also, if attempted, might, from a small act of imprudence or inadvertence on either fide, precipitate the scene we fo much deprecate. And as to the latter, we hope our reafons and apprehenfions before affigned will fufficiently juftify us, in diffenting from the fame. This we mean as to the forces in general: the Scarborough man of war being a ftationed fhip, and the captain having declared he has only come to protect the trade, and not with any hoftile intentions against this province, we look upon in quite a different point of light, and have accordingly wrote to Capt. Barclay, that we have no objection to his being fupplied from time to time with fuch articles of provifions as the town af fords, fo long as the perfons and properties of the inhabitants remain unmolefted. All we request of him is, that he would be pleafed to do it through the medium of an agent or commiffary in town, and by a boat to be kept for that purpose, manned with people belonging to the place. This caution we think neceffary, as you know the town is at prefent filled with men whofe zeal or imprudence might perhaps carry them into exceffes which we wish to prevent, hould they intermix with men of different principles from themselves.
By order of the Congrefs, ARCHIBALD BULLOCK, Prefident."
"SIR, I defire you will lay before the gentlemen of the corporation the inclosed exhortation to the inhabitants of this colony, and that you will communicate the fame to the public, and alfo have it inferted in the feveral news-papers published in the city of New York. I am, Sir, your most obedient servant,
WM. TRYON, The exhortation appeared in the NewYork Gazette of March 18. viz.
"To the Inhabitants of the Colony of New York.
NOTWITHSTANDING prejudice, delusion, and faction, have hitherto, among too many, ufurped the feat of reafon and reflection, and every exhortation I have offered to the inhabitants of this province, (in whofe affection I have been taught to be happy), has been reviled, and treated with neglect; yet, as my wifhes for their profperity, and feelings for their calamities, cannot eafily be fuppreffed, even towards the difo bedient, I cannot but repeat my endeavours to recal thofe who have revolted from their allegiance, to a fenfe of their duty; and to comfort those who have been the objects of oppreffion, for their zealous attachment to our happy conftitution, and their steady obedience to the fovereignty of the British empire.
It is in the clemency and authority of Great Britain only, under God, that we can look for happiness, peace, and protection; and I have it in command from the King, to encourage, by every means in my power, the expectations in his Majefty's well-difpofed fubjects in this government, of every affiftance and protection the ftate of Great Britain will enable his Majefty to afford them, and to cherifh every appearance of a difpofition ou their part to withstand the tyranny and mifrule which accompany the acts of thofe who have but too well hitherto fucceeded in the total fubverfion of legal government. Under fuch affurances, therefore, I exhort all the friends to good order, and our juftly-admired conftitution, ftill to preferve that conftancy of mind which is inherent in the breafts of virtuous and loyal citizens; and I trust a very few months will relieve them from
their present oppreffed, injured, and injulted condition.
England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales, have united to place their whole ftrength, power, and confidence, in his Majefty's hands. The numerous addresses from all parts of the King's dominions in Europe, fpeak the loyalty and zeal with which his fubjects there engage to fupport his Majefty in afferting and maintaining the juft fovereignty of the British empire over all its members.
The British ftate moves not by fudden and violent fallies, nor wantonly oppreffes: fhe has lenity for her bafis, and is diftinguished for moderation and forbearance; but when her juft indignation is roused, the experience of other nations can teftify her weight and force. It cannot be fufficiently lamented, that the conduct of this country has called for fo fevere a rod; may a timely and dutiful fubmiffion avert its stroke.
I have the fatisfaction to inform you, that a door is ftill open to fuch honeft and deluded people, as shall avail themfelves of the juftice and benevolence which the fupreme legislature has held out to them, of being reftored to the King's grace and peace, and that proper fteps have been taken for paffing a commillion for that purpose, under the great feal of Great Britain, in conformity to a provifion in a late act of parliament; the commiffioners thereby to be appointed, having alfo power to inquire into the ftate and condition of the colonies, for effecting a restoration of public tranquillity. WM TRYON."
Foreigners are faid to affift the provincials.-A letter from New York, received about May 8. fays, "The Flower of the Sea, an armed veffel fitted out at this port, is arrived here, with feveral Pruffian engineers on board, who are come on purpose to ferve in the provincial army." "Philadelphia, March 11. On Saturday laft arrived here Baron de Woedkle, formerly a general officer in the Pruffian fervice."
"London, May 28. A letter received from Cadiz fays, An American privateer is arrived at this port: the brought difpatches from the Congrefs for the court of Madrid. The above veffel is frigatebuilt, mounts twenty-eight guns, nine pounders, and is commanded by Capt. James Blake."
"London, April 19. They write from the island of Jerfey, that on the 21st of Iaft month, two American veffels arrived at St Maloes, and unloaded their cargo in less than thirty hours. There were on board the faid veffels two American gentlemen, thought to have come from the general congrefs, as they set off for Paris the day they arrived; and, as we are informed, were received as men of character, as they were at court, though they ftaid only three days at Paris, and then returned on board the faid veffels, which were loaded with powder and all forts of warlike ftores while the gentlemen were at Paris, as every thing was
Charlestown, March 12. "Yefterday a very sharp engagement happened off this place, between an English frigate and two French fhips of twenty guns each, that were laden with impiements of war for the provincial army. The captain of the English frigate infift- in readiness for their loading and unloaded on examining the Frenchmen, which ing. They failed both together. They they refufing, an engagement enfued, are about 280 tons burden each.