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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from William Legge, Earl of Dartmouth to Josiah Martin
Dartmouth, William Legge, Earl of, 1731 - 1801
July 12, 1775
Volume 10, Pages 89-91

[B. P. R. O. Am. & W. Ind. No. 222.]
Letter from the Earl of Dartmouth to Governor Martin.

Whitehall, 12th July, 1775.


This dispatch which encloses a triplicate of my letter of the 5th instant will be transmitted to you by Lord Dunmore under whose care it is sent by a Store Ship having on Board 3000 stand of Arms with Ammunition and other Military Stores, a part of which arms His Lordship is instructed to deliver to your order from a hope on one hand that Lieutenant Colonel Macleane will be able with your assistance to raise a Battalion from amongst the Highlanders in

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North Carolina, and an apprehension on the other hand that General Gage may not be able to supply all the Arms that may be necessary on such an occasion.

The King received in the most gracious manner your offer of raising a Battalion of Highlanders under your own Command as a further Evidence of your Zeal and Attachment, but as the Rules which His Majesty has adopted in respect to His Army will not admit of your being restored to the Rank you held when you relinquished that Line of Service in 1769, the Command of which Corps must of necessity be given to Lieutenant Colonel Macleane in consequence of the Plan His Majesty has already approved, in the Execution of which His Majesty has the fullest confidence that you will give Lieutenant Colonel Macleane every assistance and support in your power.

It is with great Satisfaction, I see by your last Letters that the Western Counties have given further assurances of their Loyalty and Attachment to Government.

This favourable disposition cannot be too much encouraged, and as you will receive herewith a Power, under the Great Seal, to pardon all those who were concerned in the Rebellious Insurrections in 1770, Herman Husbands only excepted, I trust it will have a very good Effect, and that I shall hear by your next Letters that they have entered into that Association, which was recommended in my Dispatch to you of the 3rd of May.

Should that measure have taken Effect and should Lieutenant Colonel Macleane have been able with your assistance to have formed a Battalion from amongst the Highlanders, I hope His Majesty's Government in North Carolina may be preserved, and His Governor and other officers not reduced to the disgraceful necessity of seeking protection on Board the King's Ships.

With regard to the Public Transactions in the Colony as stated in your Letters Nos 29, 30, 31 and 32, I can only say that His Majesty entirely approves the whole of your conduct. After such extraordinary and unwarrantable Proceedings of the Assembly, their Dissolution was the only step by which the Dignity of Government could be vindicated, and there seems to be no other or better mode of providing for the Administration of Justice both Civil and Criminal than that which you have suggested, and which having the Precedent of New York to support it, will I trust be submitted to, if not from a spirit of obedience at least from consideration of the total

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Anarchy and confusion that must arise from the want of such Institution. And it is with real satisfaction I observe that the members of the Council seem at length to be awakened to a just sense of their Duty, and have given you the support which you had so great a Right to expect from them.

I have the satisfaction to acquaint you that the King approves what you propose respecting those Persons who deriving their Titles to Lands from Grants of the Governor of No. Carolina are now become Inhabitants of So. Carolina by the removing of the Boundary Line. His Majesty is sensible of the Injustice of compelling them to take out fresh Grants from that Government, and I will not fail to give Instructions to the Governor of So. Carolina upon this point by the first favourable opportunity that offers.

I am &c.,