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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Josiah Martin to Samuel Johnston
Martin, Josiah, 1737-1786
October 07, 1775
Volume 10, Pages 262-263

[B. P. R. O. Am. & W. Ind.: No. Carolina. No. 222.]
Letter from Governor Martin to Samuel Johnston Esq.

Cruizer Sloop of War in Cape Fear River,
October 7th 1775.


Notwithstanding the respect I have entertained for your private character, notwithstanding my repugnance to oppose to its merits your conduct in public and political transactions, during the present unnatural, unhappy and much to be lamented contest between Great Britain and her Colonies, which my long forbearance towards you must have evinced, you have reduced me to the necessity I wished to have avoided of choosing between the two disagreeable

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alternatives of testifying my disapprobation of your conduct officially, or taking upon myself the guilt of conniving at the undutiful behaviour of one of the King's servants, which last being utterly inconsistent with my ideas of the duty I owe His Majesty, I cannot hesitate to make my election of the former, however painfull my respect for Mr Johnston makes that decision.

I have seen with astonishment your late appearance in the conspicuous character of Moderator of a popular Assembly unknown to the Laws and Constitution of this Province and summoned and convened by yourself. And I have seen with greater surprise if possible, your acceptance of the appointment of Treasurer of the Northern District of this Colony, unconstitutionally and contrary to all Law and usage conferred upon you by this Body of your own creation, on whose other acts so derogatory to the just authority of the King and so utterly subversive of the Constitution of this Country, I shall not here enlarge, although I do most sincerely & unceasingly deplore them.

Your Conduct in these instances Sir I am bound to consider such manifestations of your undutyfulness to His Majesty and His Government and such an avowal of your participation in the present fatal disorders of this Country as render it altogether unfit, and inconsistent with my duty to the King to permit you to continue Deputy Naval Officer of this Province: and I am to inform you that I have accordingly appointed Mr Archibald Neilson to supersede you as Deputy Naval Officer of this Colony, from which Office you are hereby suspended until His Majesty's royal pleasure shall be known.

I am Sir &c.,