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Letters from Lord Stirling to the President of Congress, with intercepted Letters addressed to the Earl of Dartmouth



Elizabethtown, January 6, 1776.

SIR: Having particular reasons for believing; that an express, which went through this place about noon, this day, for New-York, was charged with despatches of importance for the Ministry of Great Britain, and which might contain matters valuable to be known to the Continental Congress, I immediately despatched the bearer hereof, Capt˙ Morris, of my regiment, to overtake the messenger, which he did, at the second ferry between this and New-York, and has this moment brought back the messenger, with the enclosed two packets, directed for the Earl of Dartmouth,


which I think it is most proper to send to you unopened, in order to be laid before the Congress. Captain Morris, who, on this occasion, has behaved with great prudence and alertness, will wait for whatever despatches or commands you may have for me.

I have the pleasure to inform you, that several vessels, with valuable cargoes, from foreign ports, have arrived in this Province, and, under the protection I have afforded them, have landed their cargoes. Among the rest, are some hundred barrels of gunpowder, which, chiefly, is safely lodged in New-York.

I have the honour to be, your most obedient, humble servant,


To the Honourable John Hancock.