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Fredericksburg, Virginia Committee



Saturday, April 29, 1775.

At a Council of one hundred and two Members, Delegates of the Provincial Convention, Officers, and special Deputies of fourteen Companies of Light-Horse, consisting of upwards of six hundred well-armed and disciplined men, friends of Constitutional Liberty and America, now rendezvoused here in consequence of an alarm occasioned by the Powder being removed from the County Magazine, in the City of Williamsburgh, in the night of Thursday the 21st instant, and deposited on board an armed Schooner, by order of his Excellency the Governour:

The Council having before them the several matters of intelligence respecting this transaction, and particularly a Letter from the Honourable Peyton Randolph, Esquire, Speaker of the late House of Burgesses of Virginia, received here last night by an express despatched to Williamsburgh for the purpose of gaining intelligence, informing that the gentlemen of the City of Williamsburgh and neighbourhood have had full assurance from his Excellency that this affair will be accommodated, and advising that the gentlemen assembled here should proceed no further at this time. This Council came to the following determination, and offer the same as their advice to those publick spirited gentlemen, friends to British Liberty and America, who have honoured them, by this appointment: Highly condemning the conduct of the Governour on this occasion, as impolitick, and justly alarming to the good people of this Colony, tending to destroy all confidence in Government, and to widen the unhappy breach between Great Britain and her Colonies, ill-timed and totally unnecessary, consider this instance as a full proof, that no opinion which may be formed of the good intentions of a Governour in private life, can afford security to our injured and oppressed Country; but that obedience to arbitrary and ministerial mandates, and the most tyrannical and oppressive system of Government, must be the fatal line of conduct of all His Majesty' s present servants in America. At the same time justly dreading the horrours of a civil war, influenced by motives of the strongest affection to our fellow-subjects of Great Britain, most ardently wishing to heal our mutual wounds, and therefore preferring peaceable measures, whilst the least hope of reconciliation remains, do advise that the several companies now rendezvoused here do return to their respective homes; but considering the just rights and liberty of America to be greatly endangered by the violent and hostile proceedings of an arbitrary Ministry, and being firmly resolved to resist such attempts at the utmost hazard of our lives and fortunes, we do now pledge ourselves to each other to be in readiness, at a moment' s warning, to reassemble, and by force of arms, to defend the Law, the Liberty, and Rights of this or any sister Colony, from unjust and wicked invasion.

Ordered, That expresses be despatched to the Troops assembled at the Bowling Green, and also to the Companies from Frederick, Berkley, Dunmore, and such other Counties as are now on their march, to return them thanks for their cheerful offer of service, and to acquaint them with the determination now taken.


The foregoing Determination of Council having been read at the head of each Company, was cordially and unanimously approved.