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Instructions to the Commissioners


Instructions to JAMES TILGHMAN and ANDREW ALLEN, Esquires, Commissioners appointed to treat and agree with the Right Honorable JOHN Earl of DUNMORE, Governor of VIRGINIA, concerning the settlement of the Western bounds and limits of the Province of PENNSYLVANIA, and preserving the public peace and tranquillity on the Borders, till a final settlement of the said lines.

1st˙ You are to proceed, without loss of time, to Williamsburg, the place of his Lordship' s residence in Virginia, and enter upon the execution of your commission as soon as possible after your arrival. Should his Lordship be from home, and not gone to too great a distance, you will wait his return, or send an express, (as you judge most proper,) to acquaint him with your being sent from this Government to treat with him on public business, and request his return.

2d˙ Your first point should be to prevail with him to join with the Proprietaries of this Province in a Petition to his Majesty in Council, to appoint Commissioners to run and mark out the boundary or division line — such as his Majesty shall please to order and direct, between this Province and Virginia; the expense of which to be equally borne by the two Colonies.

3d˙ Whether his Lordship should accede to the above proposal or not, you should urge every argument in your power to induce him to agree to the settling a temporary line of jurisdiction between the two Colonies, till the said boundary line shall be settled, or his Majesty' s orders and directions can be obtained respecting the same.

4th˙ Should his Lordship come into the last mentioned measure, you will no doubt endeavour to fix the temporary line of jurisdiction as favourably as possible for this Province, and as near to the Charter bounds as you can; and in order thereto you will refer yourselves to the map or plan heretofore transmitted by me to him, which shows to demonstration that Fort Pitt is near six miles to the eastward of our five degrees of longitude. At any rate, however, you are not to accede to any proposed temporary line which shall give jurisdiction to Virginia over any lands lying to the eastward of the river Monongahela.

5th˙ Whatever may be the temporary line agreed on, you should take care to insert a clause in the articles to be drawn up, containing a saving of the rights on both sides, to the lands up to the true lines or boundaries where they shall be finally settled.

6th˙ If the business is not carried on by the interchange of letters, or written proposals between you, you should take private notes, or minutes, by way of diary, of every thing material that passes, not only to enable you to make


an exact report of the whole transaction, but to found affidavits on to be sent to England, if necessary. As great reliance is had on your knowledge and abilities, any further instructions are unnecessary.


Philadelphia, 7th May, 1774.