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Letter from Colonel Woodford to the Virginia Convention



Great-Bridge, December 12, 1775.

Lieutenant-Colonel Stephens arrived at Kemp' s Landing last night, and, agreeably to my orders, sent a party to secure every person in that neighbourhood that had left Norfolk since the battle of the Great-Bridge. He informs he has Mr˙ McCalvert, Dr˙ Campbell, Mr˙ Matthew Phripp, and others, now with him, whose examinations I now enclose. I have had a number of people from thence to day, whose stories disagree. They bring two petitions, one from the poor inhabitants of Norfolk, the other from the distressed Highlanders, which I likewise send enclosed; and have given no answer to them yet. Have detained the bearers for further consideration.


Two gentlemen this moment brought me in a young Scotchman, named Hamilton, who confesses he has borne arms, and was at this fort in Gilmore' s company. He was making his way to Nansemond. I have ordered him to be coupled to one of his brother black soldiers, with a pair of handcuffs, which is the resolution I have taken shall be the fate of all these cattle, till I am further instructed by your honourable House.

Enclose a copy of my advertisement, dispersed over Princess-Ann and Norfolk Counties, and hope it will meet with your approbation.

Major Eppes arrived here this evening with his party, and Colonel Howe with three hundred and forty of the Carolina regulars. I shall march to-morrow with a number of the troops.

I am just informed that several sail of vessels were arrived to day, thought to have troops on board; but Colonel Howe supposes them to be the tenders returning from North-Carolina.

Two companies of choice riflemen have arrived at headquarters this week, who are well armed, commanded by Captain Campbell, of Fincastle, and Captain Gibson, of West-Augusta. Captain Morgan Alexander, with his rifle company, is expected this day. As fine men we have here as ever were seen.