Documenting the American South Logo
Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Advanced Search Options
Letter from Samuel Johnston to Josiah Martin
Johnston, Samuel, 1733-1816
November 16, 1775
Volume 10, Pages 332-333

[From MS. Records in Office of Secretary of State.]
Letter from Samuel Johnston to Governor Martin.

Boston Novr 16th, 1775.


I have this day had the honour of receiving your Excellency's Letter signifying that you had been pleased to suspend me from acting as Deputy to Mr Turner in the Naval Office, with the reasons for such removal, and it gives me pleasure that I do not find neglect of the duties of my Office in the Catalogue of my Crimes.

-------------------- page 333 --------------------

At the same time that I hold myself obliged to your Excellency for the polite manner in which you are pleased to express yourself of my private Character, you will pardon me for saying that I think I have reason to complain of the invidious point of view in which you place my publick Transactions, when you consider the late meeting of the Delegates or Deputies of the Inhabitants of this province at Hillsborough, a Body of my own Creation, your Excellency cannot be ignorant that I was a mere instrument in this Business under the direction of the people, a people among whom I have long resided, who have on all occasions placed the greatest Confidence in me, to whose favourable Opinion I owe everything I possess and to whom I am bound by Gratitude (that most powerful & inviolable tie on every honest mind) to render every service they can demand of me, in defence of what they esteem their just rights, at the risque of my Life & property.

You will further, Sir, be pleased to understand, that I never considered myself in the honorable light in which you place me, one of the King's Servants; being entirely unknown to those who have the disposal of the King's favors, I never enjoyed nor had I a right to expect, any Office under his Majesty; the Office which I have for some years past executed under the Deputation of Mr Turner was an honest purchase for which I have punctually paid an annual sum, which I shall continue to pay till the expiration of the Term for which I should have held it agreeably to our Contract.

Permit me, Sir, to add that had all the King's Servants in this Province been as well informed of the disposition of the Inhabitants as they might have been and taken the same pains to promote & preserve peace, good order & obedience to the Laws among them, that I flatter myself I have done, the Source of your Excellency's unnecessary Lamentations had not at this day existed, or had it existed it would have been in so small a degree that e'er this it would have been nearly exhausted; but, Sir, a Recapitulation of Errors which it is now too late to correct would be painful to me and might appear impertinent to your Excellency, I shall therefore decline the ungratefull Task, and beg leave, with all due respect to subscribe myself Sir

Your Excellency's
Most obedient humble servant