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Elbridge Gerry to General Washington



Chamber of Supplies, Watertown, August 1, 1775.

MAY IT PLEASE YOUR EXCELLENCY: Mr˙ Cheever has applied this afternoon for two hundred thousand small-arm cartridges, in consequence of an application from the Adjutant-General, to answer the demand of Major Gen˙ Lee.

Mr˙ Cheever is able to furnish about thirty-six thousand, it being the whole quantity now made; and there remains but thirty-six barrels in store of the quantity collected from the Towns in this Colony, and received from the others this side Maryland. There are also about two tons of lead, and not any flints in store, of which we think it necessary to give immediate information.

We are in daily expectation of some powder from the West-Indies, but cannot say what success our plan will meet with; indeed we have exerted ourselves to obtain it several ways, which may be communicated at a more convenient opportunity. With respect to lead and flints, Colonel-Porter was despatched sixteen days since for New-York, for two hogsheads of flints and ten ton lead, but we have heard nothing from him since. We are ready to exert to the utmost to serve the cause, provided the Commissary-General desires it for the present. The powder shall be sent immediately if ordered, or be made into cartridges as soon as may be.

We are, Sir, respectfully, your most obedient servant,

His Excellency General Washington.