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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
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Letter from Robert Burton to Thomas Burke
Burton, Robert, 1747-1825
August 11, 1781
Volume 15, Page 603

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COL. ROBERT BURTON TO GOVERNOR BURKE.

Augst. 11th, 1781.

Sir:

In my report Yesterday relative to the Supplying Dragoon Horses for Genl. Greene, I said, “I could have been in greater readyness had it not been that the Justices of Warren, (where there were a Number of Good Horses) refused to grant a Warrant to impress more than one Horse in that County” or in other words, I could have got a few good Horses there could I have procured a Warrant on first application. I did not mean that I was altogether prevented. Your Excellency has great hopes from willingness of the people to furnish Articles usefull for the Army. I am sorry to inform you that there could not be greater unwillingness in almost every man. I have not been able to purchase five Horses without first producing an impress Warrant, then truly, the owner of the Horse, would prefer selling him to having him impressed, and there is not more than one man in twenty that has a good Horse but what will secret him to prevent his being impressed. Some have gone so far, as to put them out of the way after they were impressed. I thought your Order of 30th June a Sufficient Warrant to impress any Horse within this State, but since your Arrival at Nutbush, I asked your own Opinion on that head, and then you said, you thought it might be as well to procure Warrants under the Law that points out the Mode of impressment.

I am your Excellency's Hbl. St.,
RO. BURTON, Q. M. G., N. C.