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William Maclay to Richard Peters



Sunbury, July 23, 1776.

SIR: On notification from the War Office that flints were wanted, I immediately determined to examine what could be produced in that way in this country, my former general acquaintance with the country, in the practice of surveying, enabling me to prosecute such an inquiry with the greater advantage. The bearer, Mr˙ Ball, will produce you specimens of our success. Some of our gunsmiths, who have tried them in firearms, do not hesitate to pronounce them superior to imported flints, I will, however, be sufficiently happy, if, on general experience, they are found only equal. The vein or quarry appears inexhaustible, situate along the banks of Penn' s Creek, down which and Susquehannah there is a safe and expeditious navigation for boats and canoes great part of the year; the distance from Sunbury about ten miles. I will only add, that if it is thought advisable to establish a manufacture of flints at this place, I will cheerfully render every assistance in my power.

And am, sir, with the greatest respect, your most obedient and very humble servant,

To Richard Peters, Esq˙, Secretary of the War Office at Philadelphia.