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Petition of Nathaniel Barstow and Daniel Whitmore, of Sunderland, in the County of Hampshire



To the honourable Council and the honourable House of Representatives of the State of the MASSACHUSETTS-BAY, in General Court assembled:

The Petition of NATHANIEL BARSTOW and DANIEL WHITMORE, of SUNDERLAND, in the County of HAMPSHIRE, humbly showeth:

Whereas there is a great scarcity of gunpowder in this part of the State, and people cannot obtain necessary supplies thereof at this important crisis, and there being considerable quantity of saltpetre manufactured in these parts, your petitioners apprehending that it would be advantageous to the publick, and serve the publick cause, to have the saltpetre made in these parts manufactured into gunpowder. amongst us, one of us has taken pains to acquaint himself with the mystery of manufacturing the same, and has attained it, so that he has already made about forty weight of what is esteemed excellent good gunpowder; and we have begun to erect a Powder-Mill by the assistance of Mr˙ Cunable, who says it may be ready to go in about three weeks. Your petitioners therefore humbly pray that your Honours would be graciously pleased to grant unto them the privilege of manufacturing what saltpetre is made in these parts into gunpowder for the use of the estate, on the terms that it is manufactured at the other Powder-Mills in the said State, and also appoint some meet person or persons to purchase and receive said saltpetre, and also to dispose of such gunpowder as shall be made therewith. And in duty bound, will ever pray.


Sunderland, September 6, Anno Domini 1776.