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Letter from Jacamiah Allen to New-York Congress



March 16, 1776.

GENTLEMEN: At the request of Colonel Drake, I beg leave to acquaint you I have now eighty-two guns unspiked, and within three weeks from this date doubt not but I shall be able to complete the whole. Though, gentlemen, I beg to observe, the assistance I expected to have from the Bartley guards I could not obtain, they declaring their agreement with Mr˙ Bartley was, to guard the guns from seven o' clock in the evening to six in the morning, for which they received ten shillings per week per man, and to find themselves. The guards consist of six men. Being thus disappointed, I was obliged to give one of his guards thirty-six shillings per week, and others at that rate, occasionally to


assist in the fires, which are generally composed of two or three cords of wood, in which the guns are to be raised, and tended both night and day, in order to soften the spikes.

My brother, who left the cannon last Thursday, informed me the assistance of guards was asked, in moving the guns, from Mr˙ Williams; and also denied, and countenanced by Mr˙ Bartley.

Therefore, gentlemen, beg leave to offer my service once more to guard the guns, (which I am willing to do at one half of what Mr˙ Bartley gets,) while I am unspiking the cannon, and as much longer as you shall think fit. As there is a number of cannon not spiked, but loaded and stopped with stones and other rubbish, at the same time mean to employ such men for guards as will clear the guns, and fit them for service; conscious, under such circumstance, the business will not want assistance, nor unworthy men receive your favour,

From your obedient and humble servant,


To the Honourable Provincial Congress for the City and County of New- York.