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Godfrey Hains


The Committee took into consideration the case of Godfrey Hains, lately apprehended and sent here by the Committee of Safety of New-Jersey. Are of opinion that his many and mischievous machinations are so dangerous, that he ought to be kept in safe custody and close jail; and that, by the Resolutions of the Continental Congress, of the 2d day of January instant, they are fully authorized, and that it is their duty to the country to have him confined; and as the said Godfrey Hains lately broke the jail of this city, and escaped, when he was there confined as a prisoner, and, continuing his evil practices, set off to navigate a vessel loaded with provisions to supply the Ministerial army and navy at Boston, they conceive it will be very dangerous to keep or convey the said Godfrey Hains to Ulster County Jail, unless he is fettered or manacled.

Therefore, Resolved and Ordered, That the said Godfrey Hains be conveyed to Ulster County Jail, to be there confined in safe and secure custody in close jail, until the further order of the Continental or Provincial Congress, or of this Committee.

And Ordered, That the said Godfrey Hains be sent, manacled or fettered, under guard, to Ulster County Jail, and that Colonel McDougall be requested to procure an Officer, with a proper guard of the Militia, or Minute-Men, of this city, to guard the said prisoner, and the other prisoners heretofore ordered to jail to Kingston, in Ulster County.

Thereupon, a draft of a Letter to the Committee of Kingston, in Ulster County, which was formerly drawn and read, and approved of, in the Committee, on yesterday, was again read, and is in the words following, to wit;

In Committee of Safety, New-York, January 23, 1776.

GENTLEMEN: By a determination of the Provincial Congress, with the consent of the Deputies from your County, then present, the jail of your County, at Kingston, was determined on to be the jail for such prisoners whose wicked practices forbid their being permitted to go at large.

In pursuance thereof, we send you, by this guard, three prisoners, to wit: John Blacker, who was ordered to be there confined by the Provincial Congress, and Azor Betts and Godfrey Hains, sent by us. We pray you to direct that they be kept in safe custody, to prevent their escape, and that very particular directions for this purpose be given as to Hains, as he formerly broke the jail in this city, and made his escape.

Take care to secure such part of the jail as you shall have them confined in, at your absolute command, and secure any person who may attempt to procure their escape. Appoint some person, whom you shall think proper, to supply them with the necessaries of life, at their own expense, if they can pay for them, and, if they cannot, then, at the publick expense. If any, or all of them must be supported at the publick expense, let the accounts be laid before your Committee, and when you find them just and reasonable, let the person to whom the money is due make oath to the account, and let a certificate of your Committee, or Chairman, that the account is reasonable and due, be added, and the accounts sent to this Committee, or the Provincial Congress, that they may be ordered to be paid.

We are, respectfully, gentlemen, your very humble servants.

By order of the Committee.

To the Chairman and Members of the Committee of Kingston, Ulster County.

Ordered, That a copy thereof be engrossed, and signed by the Chairman, and transmitted.