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Philadelphia, January 15, 1776


PHILADELPHIA, January 15, 1776. — By authentick advices from the camp, at Cambridge, of the 3d and 4th instant, we learn, that the bay and harbour of Boston yet continue open, that a man-of-war is so stationed as to command the entrance of Salem, Beverly, and Marblehead harbours; that five hundred fresh troops had arrived from Ireland; two regiments had gone to Halifax; two regiments had pushed into the river St˙ Lawrence, in hopes of getting up to Quebeck, which was very doubtful. That the two regiments arrived at Boston were the Fifty-Fifth and Seventeenth; that Admiral Shuldham was also arrived. An intelligent person got out of Boston on the 3d instant, who informed General Washington that a fleet, consisting of nine transports, containing three hundred and sixly men, were ready to sail under convoy of the Scarborough and Fowey, men-of-war, with two bomb-vessels and some flat-bottomed boats; their avowed destination in Boston was to Newport, but it was generally supposed to be Long-Island or Virginia. That a number of other transports are taking in water, and they are baking large quantities of biscuit in Boston, some say for the use of the shipping who are to lie in Nantasket Road on account of the ice, while others believe a more important movement is in agitation. This person also informs, that they have not the least idea in Boston of attacking our lines, but will be very thankful to be permitted to remain quiet. That before General Burgoyne' s departure it was circulated through the Army, in order to keep the soldiery quiet under their distresses, that the disputes would soon be settled, and that he was going to England for that purpose. That they had intelligence at Boston of four vessals having sailed from Hispaniola for this Continent some time ago, laden with arms and ammunition. Our advices conclude with the following anecdote: That upon the King' s speech arriving at Boston, a great number of them were printed, and sent out to pur lines on the 2d of January, which being also the day of forming the new Army, the great Union flag was hoisted on Prospect-Hill in compliment to the United Colonies. This happoning soon after the speeches were delivered at Roxbury, but before they were received at Cambridge, the Boston gentry supposed it to be a token of the deep impression the speech had made, and a signal of submission. That they were much disappointed at finding several days elapse without some formal measure leading to a surrender, with which they had begun to flatter themselves. When these accounts came away the Army were all in barracks, in good health and spirits. That five thousand Militia had taken the places of those soldiers who would not stay beyond their time of service; that they were good troops, and the whole Army impatient for an opportunity of action.