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Letter from Joseph Hewes to Samuel Johnston
Hewes, Joseph, 1730-1779
March 20, 1776
Volume 11, Pages 288-289

[Letter Joseph Hewes to Samuel Johnston.]

Philadelphia 20th March 1776.

Dear Sir,

I have received your favour of the 23rd of Feb'y, and also one from Mr. Hogg at Hillsborough of the 20th, I am exceedingly anxious for the safety of our Province, we sent an express to you about five weeks ago, since which I have not heard anything of him, I wait his return with impatience, The act of Parliament prohibiting all Trade & Commerce between Great Britain and the Colonies has been lately brought here by a Mr. Temple from London, it makes all American property found on the Sea liable to Seizure & confiscation and I fear it will make the Breach between the two Countries so wide as never more to be reconciled, we have heard much talk of Commissioners to be sent to treat with us, I do not expect any, the act of Parliament empowers the Navy to appoint Commissioners to receive submissions and grant pardons but no futher. Doctor Franklin told me last evening he had a Letter from London dated the 25th December, no Commissioners were then appointed, parliament was prorogued to 25th of January, I see no prospect of a reconciliation, nothing is left now but to fight it out, and for this we are not well provided, having but little

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ammunition, no Arms no money, nor are we unanimous in our Councils, we do not treat each other with that decency and respect that was observed heretofore, Jealousies, ill natured observations and recriminations take place of reason and Argument, our Tempers are sound, some among us urge strongly for Independency and eternal separation, others wish to wait a little longer and to have the opinion of their Constituents on that subject, you must give us the sentiment of your province when your Convention meets. Several Merchants and others have petitioned the Congress for leave to fit out privatiers to Cruize against British Vessels, it was granted yesterday, the Restrictions are not yet completed or I would have sent you a copy of them, I send you the last News paper enclosed to which refer for news,

My Compliments to all.

I am Sir
Your most obedt Servt.
To Samuel Johnston Esqr.