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Letter from the Congress to General Gage


Tuesday, October 11, 1774.

A copy of the Letter to General Gage was brought into Congress, and, agreeable to order, signed by the President, and is as follows:

"Philadelphia, October 10, 1774.

"SIR: The Inhabitants of the Town of Boston have informed us, the Representatives of his Majesty' s faithful subjects in all the Colonies from Nova Scotia to Georgia, that the Fortifications erecting within that Town, the frequent invasions of private property, and the repeated insults they receive from the Soldiery have given them great reason to suspect a plan is formed very destructive to them, and tending to overthrow the liberties of America.

"Your Excellency cannot be a stranger to the sentiments of America with respect to the Acts of Parliament, under the execution of which those unhappy people are oppressed, the approbation universally expressed of their conduct, and the determined resolution of the Colonies, for the preservation of their common rights to unite in their opposition to those Acts. In consequence of these sentiments, they have appointed us the guardians of their rights and liberties; and we are under the deepest concern that whilst we are pursuing every dutiful and peaceable measure to procure a cordial and effectual reconciliation between Great Britain and the Colonies, your Excellency should proceed in a manner that bears so hostile an appearance, and which even those oppressive Acts do not warrant.

"We entreat your Excellency to consider what a tendency this conduct must have to irritate and force a free people, however well disposed to peaceable measures, into hostilities, which may prevent the endeavours of this Congress to restore a good understanding with our parent state, and may involve us in the honours of a civil war.

"In order therefore to quiet the minds and remove the reasonable jealousies of the people, that they may not be driven to a state of desperation, being fully persuaded of their pacifick disposition towards the King' s Troops, could they be assured of their own safety, we hope sir, you will discontinue the Fortifications in and about Boston; prevent any further invasions of private property; restrain the irregularities of the Soldiers; and give orders that the communication between the Town and Country may be open, unmolested, and free.

"Signed by order, and in behalf of the General Congress, PEYTON RANDOLPH, President."