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Address to the Governour reported by the Committee


Thursday, October 13, 1774.

Congress met agreeable to adjournment.

Adjourned to three o' clock this afternoon.


The Committee on the State of the Province, reported the following Message to his Excellency. The same was considered and accepted by the Congress, with one dissenting voice only, and the President requested to attest the same.

May it please your Excellency:

The Delegates from the several Towns in the Province of the Massachusetts Bay, having convened in general Congress, beg leave to address your Excellency: — The distressed and miserable state of the Province, occasioned by the intolerable grievances and oppressions to which the people are subjected, and the danger and destruction to which they are exposed, of which your Excellency must be sensible, and the want of a General Assembly have rendered it indispensably necessary to collect the wisdom of the Province by their Delegates in this Congress, to concert some adequate remedy for preventing impending ruin, and providing for the publick safety.

It is with the utmost concern we see your hostile preparations which have spread such alarm throughout this Province and the whole Continent, as threatens to involve us in all the confusion and horrours of a civil war; and while we contemplate an event so deeply to be regretted by every good man, it must occasion the surprise and astonishment of all mankind, that such measures are pursued against a people whose love of order, attachment to Britain, and loyalty to their Prince, have ever been truly exemplary. Your Excellency must be sensible that the sole end of Government is the protection and security of the people. Whenever therefore that power, which was originally instituted to effect these important and valuable purposes, is employed to harass, distress or enslave the people, in this case it becomes a curse rather than a blessing.

The most painful apprehensions are excited in our minds by the measures now pursuing. The rigorous execution of the Port Bill, with improved severity, must eventually reduce the capital and its numerous dependencies to a state of poverty and ruin. The Acts for altering the Charter and the administration of justice in the Colony, are manifestly designed to abridge this people of their rights, and to license murders; and if carried into execution, will reduce them to a state of slavery. The number of Troops in the capital, increased by daily accession drawn from the whole Continent, together with the formidable and hostile preparations which you are now making on Boston Neck, in our opinion greatly endanger the lives, liberties and properties, not only of our brethren in the town of Boston, but of this Province in general. Permit us to ask your Excellency, whether an inattentive and unconcerned acquiescence to such alarming, such menacing measures, would not evidence a state of insanity; or, whether the delaying to take every possible precaution for the security of this Province, would not be the most criminal neglect in a people heretofore rigidly and justly tenacious of their constitutional rights?

Penetrated with the most poignant concern, and ardently solicitous to preserve union and harmony between Great Britain and the Colonies, so indispensably necessary to the wellbeing of both, we entreat your Excellency to remove that brand of contention, the Fortress at the entrance of Boston. We are much concerned that you should have been induced to construct it, and thereby causelessly excite such a spirit of resentment and indignation as now generally prevails.

We assure you sir, that the good people of this Colony never have had the least intention to do any injury to his


Majesty' s troops; but on the contrary most earnestly desire that every obstacle to treating them as fellow-subjects may be immediately removed; but are constrained to tell your Excellency, that the minds of the people will never be relieved till those hostile works are demolished; and we request you, as you regard his Majesty' s honour and interest, the dignity and happiness of the Empire, and the peace and welfare of this Province, that you immediately desist from the Fortress now constructing at the South entrance into the town of Boston, and restore the pass to its natural state.

Upon a motion,

Ordered, That a fair copy of the foregoing Report be taken and presented to his Excellency Thomas Gage, Esquire, and that a Committee be appointed to wait upon him early to-morrow morning with the same. Accordingly, Colonel Lee, Honourable Colonel Ward, Colonel Orne, Captain Gardner, Henry Gardner, Esq˙, Mr˙ Devens, Mr˙ Gorham, Captain Brown, Colonel Pomeroy, Honourable Colonel Prescott, Colonel Thayer, Mr˙ Williams, Captain Heath, Captain Upham, Mr˙ Barnes, Captain Doolittle, Mr˙ Lothrop, Major Thompson, Mr˙ Palmer, Mr˙ Pickering, and Captain Thompson, were appointed.

Resolved, That when this Congress shall adjourn over the Sabbath, that it be adjourned to the Court House in Cambridge.

Then the Congress adjourned till to-morrow morning, nine o' clock.