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Letter from Lieutenant Hacker to Eseck Hopkins Commander-in-Chief of the Fleet



Franklin' s Ferry, April 30, 1776.
Two o' clock, P˙ M.

SIR: These are to inform you that, according to your order, I proceeded to Newport as fast as possible, and arrived there yesterday, at one o' clock, and went on shore, and found the Cabot at Mr˙ Holmes' s wharf, getting out the guns. I advised Captain Hinman to go up the river as soon as he could, as there was a report that there were three ships in the offing. He told me that he intended it. I put out at three o' clock, with the wind at west-southwest, and flood tide, and beat out to the Light-House; but the wind being small, we bore away into Franklins Ferry; came to and lay till four o' clock; then got under way, and beat as far as the Half-way House, between Point-Judith and Watch Hill, where we saw a ship lying, a-hull. We still beat, in hopes of getting by her; but she made sail, and stood in to windward of us. We stood for her awhile, but soon bore away. She immediately bore away after us, but made no more sail than her topsails and courses. She stood after us till we got round Point-Judith, where we lowered, all sail to wait for her. She hauled away under the lee of Block-Island. I should have taken her for one of our ships, but Captain Hinman was chased before from the same place, within a mile of the Light-House, and a small sloop yesterday, within a few rods of the shore; which makes me cautious how I go too near a ship. I thought proper to run into Franklin' s Ferry, and send Captain Brown as fast as possible to acquaint you.

I am, with respect, yours to serve,


To Eseck Hopkins, Esq˙, Commander-in-Chief of the American Fleet, (per favour of Captain Brown,) at New-London.