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Regulations for the Militia of the Province


Wednesday, August 16, 1775.

The Congress resumed the consideration of the Plan for further regulating the Militia, &c˙, which, after certain amendments, was approved, and is as follows, viz:

The Congress taking into further consideration the state of the Militia in this Province:

Resolved, 1. That the several County, or (where there is no County) the Township Committees, do transmit the


names of all the Militia Officers, chosen within their respective Districts, to the Provincial Congress, or to the Committee of Safety, to be by them commissioned, agreeable to the directions of the Continental Congress.

Resolved, 2. That all officers above the rank of a Captain, not already chosen or appointed pursuant to an Ordinance of this Congress made at their last session, be appointed by the Congress, or, during their recess, by the Committee of Safety.

Resolved, 3. That where the inhabitants of different Townships have been embodied into one Company, Battalion, or Regiment, before the 20th day of June last, it is not the intention of this Congress they should he dissolved, provided they govern themselves according to the rules and directions of the same.

Resolved, 4. That the Militia of Bergen shall compose one Regiment; the Militia of Essex two Regiments, with privilege of forming them into four Battalions; the Militia of Middlesex two Regiments; the Militia of Somerset two Regiments; the Militia of Monmouth three Regiments; the Militia of Morris two Regiments and one Battalion; the Militia of Sussex two Regiments and one Battalion; the Militia of Hunterdon four Regiments; the Militia of Burlington two Regiments, and a Company of Rangers in the Township of Little Egg-Harbour; the Militia of Gloucester three Battalions; the Militia of Salem one Regiment; the Militia of Cumberland two Battalions; and the Militia of Cape-May one Battalion.

Resolved, 5. That this Congress do recommend to all inferiour Officers to pay due obedience to their superiour Officers, agreeable to the directions of the Continental and Provincial Congresses.

Resolved, 6. That in case of disobedience, or irregular behaviour in any Officer whatever, while on duty, complaint be made to the Committee of the County to which he belongs; the majority of whom shall, as soon as convenient, make strict inquiry into the same; and, if they think proper, may suspend the Officer so offending, and report their proceedings, together with the charge and evidence, to the Committee of Safety, or to the next Provincial Congress; who shall take such order therein as to them shall appear to be just and reasonable.

Resolved, 7. That all effective men, between the ages of sixteen and fifty, who shall refuse to enrol themselves and bear arms, shall pay into the hands of the Township Committees, where they reside, four Shillings Proclamation Money per month, as an equivalent for their personal service.

Resolved, 8. That in case any person shall refuse paying the same, the Committee shall return his name to the Provincial Congress, or to the Committee of Safety, to be dealt with as they shall direct.

Resolved, 9. That every person who hath signed or shall sign the Muster-Roll, and neglects to attend on the day of mustering, shall pay two Shillings Proclamation for every mustering day he is absent, unless he can give a sufficient reason for his absence, to be judged of by his Captain, who is hereby required to demand the same: and if the delinquent refuse payment, then the Captain shall return his name to the Township Committee, to be by them reported to the next Congress; provided that no more than two fines in a month be imposed on any one person.

Resolved, 10. That the Moneys received by the Committees and Captains, from persons who do not bear arms, nor attend their duty upon mustering days, shall be by them jointly applied towards defraying the expense attending the instruction and equipment of the Companies in their respective Districts — the fines of persons under age to be paid by their parents, and of apprentices by their masters.

Resolved, 11. That each private Soldier be furnished with good Arms, Powder and Ball, as near as maybe, agreeable to the requisitions of the Continental Congress.

Resolved, 12. That where Arms may be wanting by such effective men as shall be unable to procure them, the Captain of the Company to which such persons belong shall make application to the Committee of the County or Township, who shall supply them, on receiving security for their proper application, provided any Arms shall remain in their hands, after first supplying such of the Minute-men, hereafter directed to be enrolled, as may be unable to furnish themselves with the same.


Resolved, 13. That the precedency of Rank in the Militia shall take place in the following order: 1 Essex, 2 Salem, 3 Gloucester, 4 Morris, 5 Sussex, 6 Cape-May, 7 Monmouth, 8 Somerset, 9 Bergen, 10 Cumberland, 11 Middlesex, 12 Hunterdon, 13 Burlington: and that, where there may be more than one Regiment or Battalion in a County, the precedency shall be determined by the County Committee, according to their former seniority.

Resolved, 14. That, for the purpose of effectually carrying into execution the recommendation of the Continental Congress respecting the appointment of Minute-men, four thousand able-bodied effective men be enlisted and enrolled in the several Counties in this Province, under officers to be appointed and commissioned by this Congress, or Committee of Safety, who shall hold themselves in constant readiness, on the shortest notice, to march to any place where their assistance may be required, for the defence of this or any neighbouring Colony.

Resolved, 15. That the several Counties in this Province shall furnish Minute-men in the proportions following, viz:

County of Bergen 4 Companies of 64 men each, Officers included.
Essex, 6 companies, do.
Hunterdon, 8 companies, do.
Middlesex, 6 companies, do.
Burlington, 5 companies, do.
Monmouth, 6 companies, do.
Gloucester, 4 companies, do.
Somerset, 5 companies, do.
Salem, 3 companies, do.
Morris, 6 companies, do.
Cumberland, 3 companies, do.
Sussex, 5 companies, do.
Cape-May, 1 company, do.

Resolved, 16. That the said Minute-men, upon their enlistment, shall sign a Muster-Roll in the words following:

We, the subscribers, do voluntarily enlist ourselves as Minute-men, in the Company of ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ in the County of ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙; and do promise to hold ourselves in constant readiness, on the shortest notice, to march to any place where our assistance may be required, for the defence of this or any neighbouring Colony; as also to pay due obedience to the commands of our Officers, agreeable to the rules and orders of the Continental Congress, or of the Provincial Congress of New-Jersey, or, during its recess, of the Committee of Safety: As witness our hands, &c.

Resolved, 17. That the several County Committees of this Province, or, where there are no County Committees, the Township Committees jointly, do forthwith nominate Officers for the several Companies of Minute-men in each County, with assurance, that, as soon as their Companies are completed, they shall receive commissions from the Provincial Congress, or the Committee of Safety.

Resolved, 18. That the Minute-men be formed into ten Battalions; one in Bergen, one in Essex, one in Middlesex, one in Monmouth, one in Somerset, one in Morris, one in Sussex, one in Hunterdon, one in Burlington, one in Gloucester and Salem; and that the Companies in Cumberland and Cape-May be Independent Companies of Light-Infantry and Rangers.

Resolved, 19. That wherever the whole or the greater part of a Militia Company shall offer their service as Minute-men, they may be commanded by the Officers already appointed and chosen by them.

Resolved, 20. That whenever any of the said Minute-men shall be called into actual service, they shall receive the like pay as the Continental Army; and be furnished with Camp-equipage and Provisions; and also be provided for if wounded and disabled in the service of their Country.

Resolved, 21. That the several Battalions and Companies of Minute-men raised as aforesaid, while remaining in this particular service, shall have precedency of rank of the common Militia of the Province.

Resolved, 22. That the Minute-men raised as aforesaid shall continue in service for the space of four months, when such of them as require it shall be relieved, unless upon actual service.

Resolved, 23. That the precedency of rank, among the several Battalions and Companies of said Minute-men, shall be settled from priority in the dates of their respective commissions.

Resolved, 24. That two Brigadier-Generals be appointed for this Province, and that ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ ˙ be the first, and Philemon Dickerson, Esq˙, be the Second Brigadier-General of the said Province.


It being suggested, that divers persons in the Province are attempting to raise Companies of Light-Infantry, which may have a tendency to break other Companies that have been formed by Committees, pursuant to the former Militia Ordinance of this Congress: Resolved therefore, That no person whatever do presume to raise any Light-Infantry, or Independent Company, without the consent of the Field-Officers to whom they belong, and the approbation of the County or Township Committee, where there is no County Committee, be first obtained; and that all Companies formed before the 20th day of June last shall remain as they were formed, unless on such consent and approbation as aforesaid, such only excepted as have been constituted by permission from this Congress.