Primary tabs

Resolutions adopted at a Convention of Committees for the County of Worcester



At a Convention of Committees for the County of Worcester, held by adjournment at the Court House, on the 29th of August, 1774, and continued by adjournments to the 21st of September, the following Votes and Resolves passed, viz:

Voted, That if there be an invasion, or danger of an invasion, in any town in this county, then, such town shall, by their Committee of Correspondence, or some other proper persons, send letters by post immediately to the Committees of the adjoining towns, who shall send to the other Committees in the towns adjoining them, that they all come properly armed and accoutred to protect and defend the place invaded.


Voted, That it be recommended to the military officers in this county that they resign their offices to their respective Colonels.

Voted, That the field officers in this county resign their offices, and publish such resignation in all the Boston newspapers.

Voted, That it be recommended to the several towns in this county to choose proper and a sufficient number of military officers for each of their towns.

Voted, To accept the Report of the Committee respecting the civil officers of this county, which is as follows:

Whereas the late Act of Parliament, entitled "An Act for the better regulating his Majesty' s Government of the Massachusetts Bay," is evidently designed to prevent any civil officers from holding their places by virtue of the Charter thereof; and as it is necessary to have officers till further provision may be made; Therefore,

Resolved, That the Justices of the Peace for this county, who were in said office the last day of June past, except Timothy Ruggles, John Murray, and James Putnam, Esquires, be hereby directed to act in said office as single Justices, except in judicial proceedings merely civil; also, that the Judges of Probate, Sheriff, and Coroners who were in said offices on the last day of June past, exercise their respective offices till the Provincial Congress, proposed to sit at Concord, on the second Tuesday of October next, notwithstanding any pretended supersedeas that may be sent them, or any of them, or any Proclamation designed to prevent them from holding and exercising their said offices; and we hereby also recommend to the people in this county that they consider and treat them as being in their said offices, and support and defend them in the execution thereof, according to the laws of this Province.

Voted, As the opinion of this body, that the Sheriff do not adjourn the Superiour Court, appointed by law to be held this day, and that he retain such as are or may be committed as criminals in his custody until they have a trial.

Resolved, That as the ordinary Courts of Justice will be stayed in consequence of the late arbitrary and oppressive Act of the British Parliament, we would earnestly recommend it to every inhabitant of this county to pay his just debts as soon as possible, without any disputes or litigations; "and if any dispute concerning debts or trespasses should arise, which cannot be settled by the parties, we recommend it to them to submit all such cases to arbitration; and if the parties, or either of them, shall refuse so to do, they ought to be considered as co-operating with the enemies of this country."

Voted, To accept the Report of the Committee relative to the instructing the Representatives for this county, which is as follows:

That it be recommended to the several towns and districts, that they instruct their Representatives who may be chosen to meet at Salem, in October next, absolutely to refuse to be sworn by any officer or officers but such as are or may be appointed according to the Constitution, or to act as one branch of the Legislature in concert with the other, except such as are or may be appointed and supported according to the Charter of this Province; and they refuse to give their attendance at Boston while the town is invested with troops and ships of war; and should their be any thing to prevent their acting with such a Governour and Council, as is expressly set forth in the Charter, that then they immediately repair to the town of Concord, and there join in a Provincial Congress with such other Members as are or may be chosen for that purpose, to act and determine on such measures as they shall judge proper to extricate this Colony out of their present unhappy circumstances.

Voted, That it be recommended to the several towns and districts in this county that they provide themselves immediately with one or more field pieces, mounted and fitted for use; and also a sufficient quantity of ammunition for the same; and that the officers appoint a suitable number of men out of their respective companies, to manage said field pieces.

Whereas the people of this county are under solemn obligations not to purchase any goods that shall be imported from Great Britain after the last day of August, 1774,


which they determine most sacredly to adhere to until our many grievances be redressed; therefore,

Voted, That it be recommended, and we do earnestly recommend it to the Committees of Correspondence or Selectmen in the several sea-port towns in this Province to appoint, or cause to be appointed, Committees to inspect the imports that have been or shall be made since the last day of August aforesaid, and publish all such in the Boston newspapers, with the names of the importers, that so we may carefully avoid all such in our dealings for the future.

Voted, To choose a Standing Committee for the county, to correspond with the Committees of Correspondence for the several counties, and elsewhere, as they shall think proper; also, to prepare matters proper to lay before this body at their several meetings; to give the earliest intelligence to the several Committees in this county of any new attack upon the liberties of this people, and call a County Convention at any time, as occasion may require. — Therefore,

Voted, That the Committees of Correspondence for the towns of Worcester and Leicester, be a Committee for the purposes aforesaid; and that Messrs˙ Thomas Denny, Joseph Henshaw, and Joshua Bigelow, be added to the above Committee.

Voted>, To take notice of Mr˙ Sheriff Chandler, for carrying an Address to Governour Gage.

Voted, That a Committee wait on the Sheriff, and require his attendance before this body, for presenting, (with others, the Justices of the County of Worcester,) the Address to Governour Gage.

Voted, That the following Declaration, signed by the Sheriff, should be accepted:

"Whereas the Convention of Committees have expressed their uneasiness to the Sheriff of this county, now present before the Convention, for presenting, with others, an Address to Governour Gage, which he frankly declares was precipitately done by him; though he is sorry for it, and disclaims any intention to do any thing against the minds of the inhabitants of this county; and had he known it would have given offence, he would not have presented said Address.


As the several Regiments in this county are large and inconvenient, by the increase of its inhabitants since the first settlement of said regiments — Therefore,

Voted, That they be divided into seven distinct Regiments, in the following manner, viz:

1st. Worcester, Leicester, Holden, Spencer, and Paxton.

3d. Sutton, Oxford, Sturbridge, Charlton, and Dudley.

3d. Lancaster, Bolton, Harvard, Lunenburgh, Leominster, Fitchburgh, Ashburnham, and Westminster.

4th. Brookfield, Western, Braintree, Hardwick, and Oakham.

5th. Rutland, Hutchinsm, Petersham, Athol, Templeton, Winchendon, Royalston, Hubbardstown, and Princeton.

6th. Southboro' , Westboro' , Northboro' , Shrewsbury, and Grafton.

7th. Mendon, Uxbridge, Northbridge, Upton, and Douglass.

Voted, That it be recommended to the several towns in this county to choose proper, and a sufficient number of military officers for each of their towns; and that the Captains, Lieutenants, and Ensigns in each regiment, who are chosen by the people, do convene on or before the tenth day of October next, at some convenient place in each regiment, and choose their field officers, to command the militia, until they be constitutionally appointed; and that it be recommended to the officers in each town in this county, to enlist one-third of the men in their respective towns, between sixteen and sixty years of age, to be at a minute' s warning; and that it be recommended to each town in this county to choose a sufficient number of men as a Committee to supply and support those troops that shall move upon any emergency.

Voted, That this meeting be adjourned to the first Tuesday in December next.