Documenting the American South Logo
Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Advanced Search Options
Letter from Thomas Burke to Nicholas Long
Burke, Thomas, ca. 1747-1783
March 09, 1782
Volume 16, Pages 223-224

[From Executive Letter Book.]

Halifax, March 9th, 1782.


I have carefully considered the subjects of your several letters and the papers you put into my hands and can clearly perceive from them your wants, but neither the proper mode nor the means for supplying them.

You are I perceive Deputy Quarter Master in this State for the United States. You are also, I perceive, Superintendent of Artificers and Manufactories of various kinds. The former is a branch of the Staff in Federal Army, but whether the latter is or is not I am not able from your letters to determine.

The pay and supplies for yourself and your Assistants in the former, are certainly to be drawn from the Continental Pay Master, but whether in the latter, I am not able to determine without knowing whether it appertains to the State or not.

Your workmen of all denominations and your materials of all kinds have been chiefly, if not altogether, supplied by the State, but on account. It does not yet appear that it belongs to the State to pay or provide for the Federal officers in detail. It is only bound to furnish its quota of forces and expense in gross, and where it makes greater and particular exertions, they ought to be on occasions and requisitions which will intitle the State to credit and reimbursement from the Confederacy. I do not find any such requisitions for

-------------------- page 224 --------------------
supplying the Staff with pay and necessities nor does any accusation that I can perceive, press so urgently as to justify a deviation from the general rules established for the Paymaster’s Department and to entitle the State to credit and reimbursement for such supplies.

The Supplies which you require for effecting the purposes of transportation and furnishing other necessaries for the Army, are such as are comprised in the requisition which the Commander in Chief of the Southern Army is impowered to make and either his general or particular applications to the State will probably entitle it to credit and reimbursement, but should they not, I have such confidence in him that I will cause them to be supplied as far as the funds in my power will admit, not doubting but that he will furnish the requisite vouchers.

I have already given orders for supplying your post with provisions upon the estimate which was laid before me, but it is still necessary that you enable me to discriminate between what is on State and what is on Continental account which you will please do without delay.

A particular estimate of the supplies requisite in your department for the Army is necessary to be laid before me and I will give the necessary orders thereon. But you are to know at the same time that we have no fund except the specific tax, the money tax being either inadequate or anticipated by certificates for supplies already furnished; and it is also necessary that you procure from the General a Draft or warrant for the sum in Specie adequate to the amount. That is indispensable by reason of some new arrangements in the Departments of Finance.

I shall write to General Greene on the subject by express which shall shortly set off, and it may be proper for you also to write to him.

I am, Sir, With Esteem, Your Ob. Servt.,