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January 30


NEW-YORK, January 30, 1776, 8 o' clock, P˙ M.

MY DEAR SON: I cannot but express my grief and surprise that you should refuse one an interview on shore after my solicitating letter, and pledge of my honour, that if I did not convince your judgment that you were wrong in your present proceeding, (also a promise of my pardon,) you should be at liberty to go where you please. In place of complying, you assure me that Captain Parker will give me a safe conduct if I will come on board there, which I make not the least doubt of, and would trust his word for more than my own safety. But what can I expect by such an interview but tears and sorrows, when you positively declare, that though my letter of last night had so melted you that you could scarcely read it, yet it had not power even to stagger your resolution: that you could never think of setting foot on American shores! I cannot help pitying your delusion, and that you are wrong persuaded by Mr˙ Baynton, who acknowledged, in his letter to Mr˙ Morgan, that he would have taken this step three months sooner, could he have persuaded you to have accompanied him. Oh, John, I am sorry for you and for myself, who looked upon you as my future staff in the decline of life. I shall still pray the Supreme Being to bless you; but, at the same time, that you may never prosper as an enemy to your native country. You mention a letter you had just finished, explaining your whole conduct, which I have not received. I left your very affectionate sister in deep sorrow and tears, as is your disconsolate and affectionate father,


To Mr˙ John Young, on board His Majesty' s Ship Phenix.

I set off for Philadelphia, to-morrow, at eleven o' clock. Adieu.

All persons that I have conversed with on the subject of your elopement, think, with myself, that it is quite a quixotick frolick of youth, and, as such, I would overlook it if you immediately return.