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Stephen Moylan to William Watson



Head-Quarters, November 6, 1775.

SIR: I am ordered by his Excellency to acknowledge the receipt of your favours of the 30th ultimo and 3d instant. Such articles on board the vessels taken by Major Tupper as are subject to perish, you had better have sold off immediately; the vessels and appurtenances to be securely laid up, and the cargoes carefully stored, until further orders from hence. A manifest of the cargo you will please to send us as soon as made out. The advanced season of the year, and the difficulty in procuring cannon, will prevent the General' s ordering more armed vessels to be fitted out for the present.

By your last, his Excellency observes that there are one hundred and eighteen pipes of wine saved out of a vessel bound to Boston, and wrecked at Eastham. It is his desire that you take immediate charge of them, and forward them to Cambridge with all speed, where they will be sold for the publick use, and where they will fetch a good price, if their quality is tolerable. Captain Coit has, I find, been so unlucky as to get aground again. I hope his misfortunes are now over, and that success will attend his cruise; which it will give pleasure to hear he has commenced. I hope the Lee is out again. The chance of taking prizes must soon be over, from the advance of the season. Therefore, the cruisers should now be in port as little as possible; which you will please to urge to the gentlemen who command them.

The General is apprehensive that Captain Martindale


is going upon too large a scale, and that he will make the outfit of his vessel too expensive. The intention of fitting out these vessels is not to attack the armed, but to take the unarmed vessels; which Captain Martindale seems to have lost sight of, by putting so many carriage-guns on board the Washington; but I sincerely hope his success will amply repay the expense. The ammunition is preparing — forty rounds for each gun, one barrel of loose powder, for priming, &c˙, and a proper quantity of match rope. I doubt much whether we shall be able to get the osnaburghs which the Captain writes for; if to be had, it will go by the same conveyance with the ammunition. There is no swivel-shot to be had here. If we cannot procure some time enough, shall send four-ounce balls; which, I think, will answer every purpose. You will please to communicate the part of this letter which regards Captain Martindale unto him, and to Captain Bowen, as I do not believe I shall have time to write them by this conveyance. The eighty men will be sent, and General Greene has been applied to for a Second Lieutenant. The master will be on just the same footing with the masters of the other armed vessels. I don' t know the use of a drum and fife on board, nor do I imagine that any of the other vessels have got them; but if it will give Captain Martindale any pleasure, he shall be indulged with them.

I am, with respect, Sir, your most humble servant,

STEPHEN MOYLAN, Sec' y pro tem.

To William Watson, Esq˙, Plymouth.