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Philadelphia Committee publish Benjamin Sharpless



In Committee of Inspection and Observation,
March 26, 1776.

Whereas the Continental Congress did lately Resolve, "that if any person shall be so lost to all virtue and regard for this country as to refuse to receive the Bills of Credit emitted by the authority of Congress, or should obstruct or discourage the currency thereof, and be convicted by the Committee of the City, County, or District, where he should reside, such person should be deemed, published, and treated as an enemy of this country, and be precluded from all trade or intercourse with the inhabitants of these Colonies;" and whereas Benjamin Sharpless, of this city, being charged with a breach of this Resolve, in refusing to receive the above Bills of Credit in payment, appeared before the Committee for the City and Liberties, acknowledged the truth of the charge, and alleged in -his defence scruples of conscience thereupon, as being money emitted for the purpose of war:

The Committee, pursuant to the trust reposed in them, proceeded to consider the charge and defence; and were of opinion that, if such allegation was true, yet, as the Congress have made no exception, and as such conduct tends to subvert the most essential, rights and liberties of their


fellow-citizens, and, by destroying the means of defence, to expose their lives and properties to unavoidable ruin, it ought not to be admitted. But it appearing, by his own acknowledgment, that he has heretofore received, and does continue to receive, Bills of Credit emitted in this and the neighbouring Provinces, though frequently issued for the purposes of war; therefore, such objection is not well founded, nor the present pretence consistent with his former conduct. The Committee, therefore, (the party having declared he did not mean to appeal to any other Board,) do unanimously hold up to the world the said Benjamin Sharpless as an enemy to his country, and precluded from all trade or intercourse with the inhabitants of these Colonies.

Ordered, That the above be published.

Extract from the Minutes.