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Letter from Colonel Arnold to General Wooster


Holland-House, January 5, 1776.

DEAR GENERAL: Last night, a faithful Acadian, belonging to our train of artillery, and who was taken prisoner in the unhappy affair of the 31st, was sent out of town by Carleton and Lanaudiere, with the enclosed note and seal, previous to which he was terrified with threats of being hanged, and when thought a true convert, he was told to carry the note to one Mange, at Verrenne, who was to raise two hundred men, &c. The seal was to be delivered to Mr˙ Jacob Jordan, the King' s Commissary at Montreal. This the man seemed to consent to, when they promised him his fortune should be made. He was further ordered to call on the Captains of Militia on his way up, and endeavour to prevail on them to raise their Parishes against us; the needful to be done in consequence of this intelligence, I have no occasion to mention. I make no doubt of your sending those people out of the way of danger and mischief. Every thing remains quiet here at present. I believe the enemy dare not venture out, though they threaten it. I pray God they may not, for we are in a miserable condition to receive them.

We have brought three pieces of cannon from our battery. I intend getting the whole here as soon as possible, for defending


our Magazine. As there were several French prisoners in town, who will, doubtless, be tampered with, and may not be proof against their artifice, I have thought proper to send an express, on purpose that you may guard against their plots. I find, by an exact return made the 2d instant, we have not quite eight hundred men, including Colonel Livingston' s Regiment of about two hundred. Some of the country people have come in to our assistance. In general, they appear friendly, and concerned for us; many offer to join us who have no arms. I have given out several commissions to the inhabitants, who are raising men. We are entirely out of lead. Enclosed is a list of sundry articles much wanted, which, with such as have been wrote for before, I make no doubt you will order as soon as may be. I am very anxious to see you here. The burden lies very heavy on me, considering my present circumstances; I find myself unequal to the task. My wound is in a fair way and less painful. I hope the express will meet you on your way down, and am, very respectfully, dear General, your most obedient and very humble servant,

B˙ ARNOLD, Colonel, &c.

To General Wooster.