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Address to the Publick, by the Ulster County, New-York, Committee



Kingston, Ulster County, New-York, May 10, 1775.

When the characters of gentlemen who have acted, in a publick capacity are impeached, (especially those who have taken upon them the execution of the measures of the last Continental Congress,) how disagreeable the task may be, it behooves every one who is a friend to truth, honesty, and liberty, to consider it as their duty, and incumbent on them, with all their efforts to support the proceedings of those gentlemen. This County in general, and Kingston in particular, have distinguished themselves by a ready compliance with the Association of the Congress, and some spirited measures to render them effectual; but as every flock contains some bad sheep, so the article of Tea has discovered the infected persons amongst us. The simile is just, and the cure used for the one, must be applied to the other, viz: a separation of the clean from the unclean. This has been done; the Committee of this Town have, after many friendly advices and entreaties, which proved in vain, been led to the disagreeable necessity of publishing Mr˙ Jacobus Low, merchant of this Town, all which have not as yet wrought a reformation, of his conduct, He lately published a piece in vindication of his conduct, the like of which, is not to be paralleled; it not only contains scurrilous and abusive language, but gross falsehoods.

First, he begins, "Johannes Sleght, Chairman of the Committee of Ulster County, has published me as an enemy of my Country, for selling Tea, in which it is set forth, that all the Merchants and Skippers had signed articles in which they agreed not to sell Tea," This, he says, "is absolutely false, for there are more who have not signed for the very reasons I had, and the Committee knew that they had not all signed at the time of publishing this piece of malice."

The Committee are surprised at Mr˙ Low' s ignorance and stupidity, since he has as well incurred the displeasure of the friends of liberty in the City of New-York, as here, by his non-compliance with his brethren, merchants in this Town. But it appears that he wall endeavour to heap sin upon sin, to cure a wound by a fresh bruise; that is, by committing a crime and leading the guiltless in the execution thereof.

The Committee still say, that every Merchant and Skipper in this Town, who were possessed of East-India Tea for sale, had signed the said articles before the publication, which they are ready to prove by the original in their custody, (Jacobus Low only exempted.) They also deny that Johannes Sleght was Chairman for the County of Ulster, (as he says,) but only for the Town of Kingston. They also deny that any malice was shown into him; but that, on the contrary, he was solicited; advised, and entreated to quit selling Tea, as the other merchants had done, to prevent a publication, which then proved abortive. As for the assertion of its being known in Kingston that said Low had offered to sign the Third Article of the Association, is even contradicted by his own advertisement, for he still adheres to the consumption of it.

As for the matters he asserts to have been reported in and by the Committee, is absolutely false; here the world may discover the wickedness of his heart, By endeavouring to punish others for his own entities. In short it is imposing on the publick to answer every part of so base a piece of wilful and false publication, from a man who,was treated with so much lenity as he was from this Committee.

By order of the Committee:


N˙ B. Since the publication of Mr˙ Low, this Committee has been augmented to the number of seventeen, and have re-elected Johannes Sleght Chairman.