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Deputy Governour Cooke to Capt. James Wallace



East Greenwich, June 14, 1775.

SIR: Long have the good people of this Colony been oppressed by your conduct in interrupting their lawful trade, and preventing the importation of provisions necessary for their subsistence. The acts of the British Parliament, already filled with restrictions of trade, oppressive in the highest degree, seem by you to be thought too lenient. Not controlled by those you affect to call your masters, you have detained the persons and taken away the property of His Majesty' s American subjects, without any warrant from the acts of trade, by which you have greatly impeded the intercourse between this and the other Colonies, as well as between the different parts of this Colony. The inhabitants expecting the interposition of the lawful authority of the Colony, have borne these outrages with a patience almost criminal. The Legislature have heard their complaints, and in consequence of an act passed by the General Assembly this day, I demand of you the reason of your conduct towards the inhabitants of this Colony, in stopping and detaining their vessels; and I also demand of you that you immediately restore the two packets belonging to some inhabitants of the Town of Providence, and all other vessels belonging to the inhabitants of this Colony, which you have taken and unjustly detain. So long as you remain in the Colony, and demean yourself as becomes your office, you may depend upon the protection of the laws, and every assistance for promoting the publick service in my power; and you may also be assured that the whole power of this Colony will be exerted to secure the persons and properties of the inhabitants


against every lawless invader. An immediate answer is requested to this letter.

I am, Sir, your most humble servant,

NICHOLAS COOKE, Deputy Governour.

To James Wallace, Esq˙, Commander of His Majesty' s Ship Rose, at Newport.