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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from John Ashe to Richard Caswell
Ashe, John, 1725-1781
July 28, 1777
Volume 11, Page 546

-------------------- page 546 --------------------
[From Executive Letter Book.]

Wilmington, 28th July, 1777.


Since writing your Excellency yesterday, I came to this place in order to send off my dispatches to the several Cols. of this district. On my arrival I found several Scotch Tories and others from Cross Creek and Bladen, and learn from what they have told to their Friends in this town that the Insurgents you mention beyond a doubt intend to come down to this place, and under the same pretence that they give for their journey to Cross Creek, vis, salt. I find so many of the inhabitants here disaffected, and such a number of Tories from the other Counties here, and others dropping in by two or three at a time, occasions me to suspect they intend siezing the magasine by surprise. I have therefore (as I do not think it safe to trust a matter of such importance to the State to too small a guard) ordered the whole of the well-affected part of the militia of this County on duty, but do not believe they will exceed three hundred. I have sent orders to Col. Robeson of Bladen to embody his Regiment immediately, and make his draughts, and in case he finds they leave Cross Creek, to march the whole of them against them, and to annoy and impede their marches by breaking down the bridges, and skirmishing with them at every difficult pass, in order to retard their march, and give me time to collect as many of the Brigade as possible. I have sent similar orders to Col. Kenan of Duplin, should they take that route, and have dispatched orders to the several other Col's. of this district to hold themselves in readiness. Mr. Edward Ingraham, a warrant Capt. of the Washington, privateer, who was just setting off when I came to town, with several letters of recommendation from Gentlemen of this place to your Excellency, I thought proper to stop on this occasion. He sends his letters pr bearer hereof, I make no doubt your Excellency will give 'em all due credit, and likewise prevail on Capt. Vance to tarry at this important crisis. I shall punctually inform your Excellency of every intelligence of importance I may receive.

I am Sir with due esteem and respect,
Your Excellency's most obed't & very hum.,