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Letter from the Committee of Correspondence, at Westerly



Westerly, May 19, 1774.

GENTLEMEN: With mingled concern and indignation, the Committee of Correspondence for this town have seen an Act for blocking up the harbour of Boston.

Rome designing to destroy the city of Carthage barbarously required of the Carthagenians that they should forsake their city, and remove their habitations twelve miles from the sea. The consideration of the inveterate hatred occasioned by the long and bloody wars which had subsisted between Rome and Carthage; the remembrance of several hundred thousand Romans killed in those wars,


and several hundred towns plundered by the Carthagenians, are some excuse for the Roman severity; but the cruel and unnatural treatment which the town of Boston has received from Great Britain, will admit of no palliation. The metropolis of a most affectionate and loyal Colony, which in all the wars of Great Britain hath gloriously supported the British interest in America, and even by their wise and vigorous efforts made a conquest which gave peace to Europe, is now threatened with destruction, for no other cause, but because the people have bravely determined not to become slaves.

We have long felt for the town of Boston; we heartily sympathize with our brethren upon this alarming occasion; we are much pleased with the noble firmness with which this cruel edict is received in Boston. We highly approve the measures taken by the town, and are entirely of opinion that the joint resolution of the Colonies to stop all importations from and exportations to Great Britain and the West Indies, until the Act is repeled, will infallibly produce the desired effect.

The country which we possess, blessed be God! affords every necessary of life. We are morally certain, that with the common blessings of Heaven upon our industry and frugality, we can live comfortably, without importing a single article from Britain or the West Indies; and we are equally certain, that neither England nor the West Indies can subsist long without us; their own preservation therefore, will compel them to do us justice.

This horrid attack upon the town of Boston, we consider not as an attempt upon that town singly, but upon the whole Continent. We are therefore determined to use our whole influence for the support of the town of Boston, in the same manner as if the attack had been made on the metropolis of this Colony; and we doubt not but the other Colonies will consider this arbitrary and tyrannical edict in the same light, and heartily unite with the friends of liberty in Boston in support of the common cause.

That infinite wisdom may direct and preserve all the Colonies, is the ardent prayer of, &c˙, &c.