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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Edward Stevens to Horatio Gates
Stevens, Edward
September 21, 1780
Volume 14, Pages 637-638


Virginia, Richmond Town, Septemr. 21st, 1780.
Dear General:

I arrived here yesterday. I find ye Governour and Council of this State is disposed to do every thing in their power to facilitate your operations to the south, and are very desirous of having ye Limits of ye Enemy in that Quarter prescribed to them. This I am in hopes you will be able to do, with what assistance Virginia will give, And the Aid of ye French, which, from what Colo. Senf informs you certainly will have.

Our unfortunate affair of ye 16th, from what I have as yet been able to see and learn, altho' it appears pains has been taken by some to make it stamp a Bad impression on ye minds of ye people, will not have ye effect expected. Former Services seem not altogether to be forgotten. I hope yet Laurels will be heaped on you in ye south. And I promise myself ye happiness of assisting in gathering them.

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The most of the Militia that Deserted I believe will return of themselves, & those that do not will be apprehended. They are to be put under ye command of the same Field Officers and myself, to serve out the Eight months. To them are to be added a Thousand Militia, or as many as will Keep me up a Command of Two Thousand. All the supernumery Officers belonging to ye State are called on to take command in this Corps, as well as all those who have resigned and incline now to turn out. A Command of Rifflemen from ye other side of ye mountain is ordered out for Colo. Morgan. The Governour informs me they are all ordered to rendevous at Hillsborough on the 25th of October. If I am not mistaken, I think yo. intimated to me as if you did not wish for them to rendevous their. I supposed it was on Accot. of Provisions. This I mentioned to ye Governour. If you think it necessary to alter ye orders, you'll be pleased to Signify to ye Governour as well as myself.

The Governour perfectly agrees with you in opinion with respect to ye enemy's taking possession of Portsmouth, provided they Keep superior to ye French by Water, and Previous to my arrival here had given orders for all ye Fat Cattle to be drove off from ye County's of Princess Ann., &c., for ye use of ye Southern Army. He tells me large Supplies of Provision can be furnished yo. from hence, if they had ye means of Transportation. He was much pleased to be informed by yr. Letter of ye great acquisition you had gained in Duck, And ashures me that hands has been employed throughout ye State to secure as much of the Article as Possible, but it is not been to be had. Orders is now given to purchase up all the Thick Osnas. that is to be had for ye purpose of making Tents; they will be better than none. As yo. desired, I mentioned ye Boats to be built at Taylors Ferry.

With much respect, I am, Dear General,
Your most obdt. and very hum. Ser.,