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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from James Hasell to Wills Hill, Marquis of Downshire
Hasell, James, d. 1785
August 09, 1771
Volume 09, Pages 13-14

[B. P. R. O. Am. & W. Ind: No. Carolina. Vol. 218.]
Letter from President Hasell to Earl of Hillsborough

Newbern North Carolina 9 August 1771.

My Lord,

I am to acknowledge the Receipt of Your Lordships letter, No. 1, directed to Governor Martin and in his absence to the Commander in Chief of this Province, As he is not yet arrived I apprehend Indisposition has detained him at New York. When Governor Tryon left this Province he acquainted me that he intended to inform your Lordship of his procedure against the insurgents.

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They appear at present thoroughly convinced of their having been deceived and imposed on by the seduction of a few Turbulent villains who had formed a distracted scheme of overturning this government and thereby throwing the Country into Anarchy and confusion but under the gracious protection of the Almighty, his Excellency's Vigorous and prudent conduct has frustrated their infernal designs, so that this province is now restored to peace, the preservation of which shall be my constant study and endeavour.

By a letter I received by Express from Governor Eden of Maryland, dated the 9 last month he acquainted me we had information that Hermon Husbands the chief Ringleader of the Rebels with eight or ten of his associates were in that province and that the difficulty of proving the Identity of his person made him delay attempting to arrest him until he heard from hence, I answered his letter by the same express and sent with him a young man I had obtained of good Character who lived many years among the insurgents and knew most of their ringleaders and could swear particularly to the identity of Husbands. I also sent the copy of two Proclamations issued here offering large Rewards for taking them and informed Governor Eden that I had wrote by the same Express to Mr. President Nelson of Virginia acquainting him with the intelligence I had received and requested his Endeavours to procure the Magdalen Cutter or the man of war that was then in Virginia to proceed to Maryland in Order to bring them securely to Newbern should they be taken. I also wrote to Mr President Hamilton of Pennsylvania requesting his assistance in having them apprehended in case they should fly from Maryland with an Intention to shelter themselves in his government. By these precautions I rest in full expectation that Husbands may be taken and brought to suffer at that Tribunal which he has so daringly insulted and opposed; An Event which would effectually restore and permanently establish the peace and tranquillity of this government. Your Lordship may be assured that for the short Time I may have the honor to be intrusted with the Administration I shall constantly use my utmost Endeavours for its support and most punctually obey every Command I may have the Honor to receive from your Lordship.

I am my Lord &c