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Address to the Gentlemen, Freeholders, and others, in the County of New-Castle


To the Gentlemen, Freeholders, and others, in the County of NEW-CASTLE, upon DELAWARE, who have a vote in the election of Representatives in General Assembly.

The several Acts of Parliament made for these ten years last past, relating to the British Colonies in North America, and their operations upon the property, liberty and lives of the good people of this country, are two well known, and too severely felt, to require any enumeration or explanation — suffice it to mention, that they have taken away the property of the Colonists without their participation or consent; that they have introduced the odious and arbitrary power of excise into the customs;


that they have made all revenue causes triable without jury, and under the decision of a dependent party Judge; that they have taken from the Assemblies all freedom of debate and determination, in the instance of suspending the Legislative power of New-York; that they have extended the obsolete and arbitrary Act of thirty-five Henry the Eighth, for trial of treason and misprison of treason, to the depriving the subjects of a fair trial in the proper country, and exposing him to the most grievous exertions of tyranny and injustice; that they have maintained a standing army in time of peace, above the controul of civil authority; and that they have not only declared that they can make laws to bind us in all cases whatsoever, but, to Crown all, have actually deprived the great and lately nourishing town of Boston, of all trade whatsoever, by shutting up their port and harbour with a formidable fleet and army; and, it is not doubted, have new-moulded the Charter of the Province of the Massachusetts Bay; and virtually indemnified all officers of the customs, the navy and army, and others acting by their command, from all murders and other crimes which they may commit upon the loyal, brave and free people of that Province. These are no phantoms arising from a heated brain, but real facts, not exaggerated.

It is impossible that any people, impressed with the least sense of constitutional liberty, should ever patiently submit to these enormous grievances, and accordingly we find our brethren and fellow-subjects in most of the Colonies are deliberating and resolving upon such measures as are thought to be most likely to recover our lost rights and privileges.

Shall the people of this large and wealthy county, heretofore the foremost on many occasions, particularly in the time of the detestable Stamp Act, to oppose all attempts to deprive them of their personal security and private property, be now inactive and silent? Forbid it liberty, let humanity forbid it.

You are therefore most earnestly requested to meet together at the Court House, in the town of New-Castle, on Wednesday, the 29th inst˙, at two o' clock in the afternoon, to consider of the most proper mode of procuring relief for our dear countrymen, and brethren of Boston, the redressing the before mentioned grievance, the restoring and securing our invaded property and expiring liberties — and establishing, on a constitutional bottom, the wonted, and by us so much desired, peace, friendship, and love between Great Britain and these Colonies. It is expected that none who have a due regard to their country, posterity, or themselves, will be absent.


June 17, 1774.