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Fairfax County, (Virginia) Association



Threatened with the destruction of our ancient Laws and Liberty, and the loss of all that is dear to British subjects and freemen, justly alarmed with the prospect of impending ruin, — firmly determined at the hazard of our lives, to transmit to our children and posterity those sacred rights to which ourselves were born; and thoroughly convinced that a well regulated Militia, composed of the gentlemen, freeholders, and other freeman, is the natural strength, and only safe and stable security of a free Government, and that such Militia will relieve our mother country from any expense in our protection and defence, will obviate the pretence of a necessity for taxing us on that account, and render it unnecessary to keep any Standing Army (ever dangerous to liberty) in this Colony, we the subscribers, inhabitants of Fairfax County, have freely and voluntarily agreed, and hereby do agree and solemnly promise, to enroll and embody ourselves into a Militia for this County, intended to consist of all the able-bodied freemen from


eighteen to fifty years of age, under Officers of their own choice, and for that purpose to form ourselves into distinct Companies of sixty-eight men each; and so soon as the said Companies or any of them in convenient neighbourhoods and Districts are completed, to choose from among our friends and acquaintance, upon whose justice, humanity and bravery, we can rely, a Captain, two Lieutenants, an Ensign, and four Sergeants, for each Company; every Captain respectively to appoint four Corporals and a Drummer for his Company, which election of Officers is to be annual in any Company, if the majority of the Company think fit; and whenever a sufficient number of Companies shall be made up, all the said Companies are to be formed into a Regiment, under the command of a Colonel, Lieutenant Colonel, and Major, to be chosen by the Captains, Lieutenants, and Ensigns of the said Companies; which election of Field Officers is to be annual also, if the majority of the Officers think fit. And such of us as have, or can procure Rifle-Guns, and understand the use of them, will be ready to form a Company of Marksmen or Light-Infantry for the said Regiment, choosing our own Officers as aforesaid, and distinguishing our dress, when we are upon duty, from that of the other Companies, by painted hunting-shirts and Indian boots, or caps, as shall be found most convenient; which regulation and establishment is to be preserved and continued until a regular and proper Militia Law for the defence of the country, shall be enacted by the Legislature of this Colony. And we do each of us for ourselves respectively, promise and engage to keep a good Firelock, in proper order, and to furnish ourselves as soon as possible with, and always keep by us, one pound of Gunpowder, four pounds of Lead, one dozen Gun-Flints, and a pair of Bullet-Moulds, with a Cartouch-Box, or Powder-Horn, and Bag for Balls. That we will use our best endeavours to perfect ourselves in the Military Exercise and Discipline, and therefore will pay due obedience to our Officers, and regularly attend such private and general musters as they shall appoint. And that we will always hold ourselves in readiness, in case of necessity, hostile invasion, or real danger, to defend and preserve to the utmost of our power, our religion, the laws of our country, and the just rights and privileges of our fellow-subjects, our posterity, and ourselves, upon the principles of the English Constitution.