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Committee of Palatine District, Tryon County, New-York to the Albany Committee



May 18, 1775.

We are so peculiarly circumstanced in this County, relating to the present struggle for American liberty, that we cannot longer defer laying the situation of this County before you. The District we represent has been foremost in avowing its attachment to liberty, and approving the method of opposition adopted in America, and are now signing an Association similar to what has been signed in other Counties in this Province, and we hope in a few days to have the pleasure to transmit it down for the press. The County being extensive, it takes a considerable time before the people who are favourable to the cause can be got to sign; for we have caused copies of the Association to be dispersed in divers parts of the County. This County has, for a series of years, been ruled by one family, the different branches of which are still strenuous in dissuading people from coming into Congressional measures, and even have, last week, at a numerous meeting of the Mohawk District, appeared with all their dependants armed to oppose the people considering of their grievances; their number being so large, and the people unarmed, struck terrour into most of them, and they dispersed. We are informed that Johnson-Hall is fortifying by placing a parcel of swivel-guns round the same, and that Colonel Johnson has had parts of his regiment of Militia, under arms, yesterday, no doubt with a design to prevent the friends of liberty from publishing their attachment to the cause to the world. Besides which we are told that about one hundred and fifty Highlanders, (Roman Catholicks,) in and about Johnstown, are armed and ready to march upon the like occasion. We have been informed that Colonel Johnson has stopped two New-Englanders, and searched them, being, we suppose, suspicious that they came to solicit aid from us or the Indians, whom we dread most, there being a current report through the County that they are to be made use of in keeping us in awe.


We recommend it strongly and seriously to you to take it in your consideration, whether any powder and ammunition ought to be permitted to be sent up this way, unless it is done under the inspection of the Committee, and consigned to the Committee here, and for such particular shop keepers as we in our next shall acquaint you of. We are determined to suffer none in our District to sell any but such as we approve of, and sign the Association. When any thing particular comes to our knowledge relating to the Indians, (whom we shall watch,) or any other thing interesting, we shall take the earliest opportunity in communicating the same to you. And as we are a young County, remote from the Metropolis, we beg you will give us all the intelligence in your power. We shall not be able to Send down any Deputies to the Provincial Congress, as we cannot possibly obtain the sense of the County soon enough to make it worth our while to send any, but be assured we are not the less attached to American, liberty. For we are determined, although few in number, to let the world see who are, and who are not such: and to wipe off the indelible disgrace brought on us by the Declaration signed by our Grand Jury and some of our Magistrates, who, in general, are considered by the majority of the County as enemies to their Country. In a word, gentlemen, it is our fixed resolution to support and carry into execution every thing recommended by the Continental Congress, and to be free or die.