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Account of the arrest and imprisonment of Samuel Dyre


Newport (Rhode Island) October 17, 1774.

On Tuesday, the 11th instant, arrived here the ship Charlotte, Captain Rogers, from London, which he left the 15th of August, and brought with him Mr˙ Samuel Dyre, of Boston, who gives this account of himself: That, on the 6th of July last, early in the morning, he was kidnapped by the soldiers in Boston, in consequence of orders from Colonel Maddison, and carried into the camp, confined in irons, and kept so till early the next morning, when he was conveyed on board the Captain, Admiral Montagu, still in chains. When he was first confined in the camp, Colonel Maddison asked him who gave him orders to destroy the tea; to which he replied, nobody. The Colonel said he was a damned liar, it was King Hancock and the damned Sons of Liberty; and if he did not tell he should be sent home in the ship Captain, where he should be hung like a dog; then told him to prepare a good story, as General Gage would come to examine him, &c˙; but General Gage never did come. He was kept on board the Admiral' s ship three or four days, in irons, before she sailed. When the ship arrived at Portsmouth, Dyre was sent up to London in irons, and examined three times before Lord North, Lord Sandwich, and the Earl of Dartmouth, respecting the destruction of the tea; but finding nothing against him, they sent him back to the ship in irons; and when he got on board again he was discharged, without receiving one farthing of wages. He then travelled up to London, seventy miles, having but six coppers in his pocket, and made his complaint to the Lord Mayor, who treated him with great humanity, as did the Sheriffs of London, and many other gentlemen; who will supply him with any sum of money to carry on a suit against those Governmental kidnappers in Boston, in case he can prove his charge, for which purpose he set out for Boston the day he arrived here. Dyre


farther said, he was offered purses of guineas in England, to accuse certain gentlemen in Boston with ordering him to help to destroy the tea. Mr˙ Lee, one of the Sheriffs of London, wrote several letters by Dyre, in his favour, to some gentlemen in Boston.