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Letter from Josiah Parker to Allen Jones
Parker, Josiah
June 27, 1781
Volume 22, Pages 1029-1030


Camp Babbs, Isle of Wight, June 27th, 1781.

Dear General:

I am honored with yours of yesterday ever attentive to the common cause it gives me pleasure to give you as well as the Honorable Assembly of North Carolina every information within my knowledge. I wrote Genl. Green the 17th Inst., sent as express with the letter to be perused and forwarded on by you. The Small pox being in Halifax & you absent caused him to return with it to which I now refer, to show you I was attentive to the publick weal it now accompanys this for your perusal. About this time I sent your private letters under the auspices of a Flagg to Portsmouth, Answers to which also accompanys this. Since my return writing of the 17th to Genl. Greene, Lord Cornwallis made a hasty march to Richmond where he remained a few days and destroyed all the Tobacco in the Neighborhood and now has made his way good to Williamsburg; his army is not increased from importation or disaffection, not a man of note has joined him. Indeed, I can hear of none at all that has. The Marquiss is joined by Baron Steuben, at least his dispatches to me of the 18th informed me the Baron would join the following day. The British Ships all fell down yesterday as low as James Town & since I wrote Genl. Greene near forty sail of Vessels has arrived mostly from Charlestown, where I am told they landed troops, these vessels being mostly Victuallers has gone again to Sea, supposed for New York. I cannot certainly learn that my troops had arrived, but it is reported the troops from Wilmington of your refugees which was laterly driven from you are landed at Portsmouth. Lord Cornwallis’ intentions clearly appear to me. I am satisfied he means to occupy the neck of land between Jas. & York Rivers, establish work at Yorktown to protect their line of Battleships, which I fear will take post here before the French which I have no certain accounts of. It yet remains a

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doubt with me whether they will maintain their post at Portsmouth or not, but at all events we ought to be guarded in this quarter, or all our Southern supplies are cut off, indeed it will depend entirely on future events. Late accounts from Europe inform of a Congress of Neutral powers sitting in Vienna at which the Emperor of Germany presides, said to be determined on bringing about a peace, Bets at Portsmouth are five to one that it takes place before the arrival of Christmas, as the Emperor is so nearly allyed to the King of France it is clear to me his interest will be considered. Of course our Independence will be hailed all over the World, as a private letter from Amsterdam says to me. I hope Carolina is aroused & that she will afford us that assistance she is able, she does not want the will I am convinced, but a lethargic languor has seized so many of our virtuous sons which I hope is now expelled and that their efforts will be exerted with gigantick force. I shall ever think myself honored by a continual correspondence with you, and I hope it will prove as beneficial to the publick as pleasing to myself.

With very great respect & esteems, I have the Honor to be
Your most Obedient Servant,
J. PARKER, Colo. Comd.