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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Griffith Rutherford to Richard Caswell
Rutherford, Griffith, ca. 1721 - 1805
February 17, 1780
Volume 15, Pages 340-341

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[From Executive Letter Book.]

February 17th, 1780.


I am truly sorry I had not the pleasure of seeing you, but as I am so circumstanced I hope you will excuse me, for I could not prevail on my company or any one of them to stay for me.

The situation of our Country is truly alarming. I am blameable as well as others in producing the distresses; but when a Country is imposed on, as the Westward part of this State is, I think the Blame not so much. But as the Assembly sits at this time, the security of our State depends on your Excellency's exertions, with the advice of your Counsel. The raising of men to send out of the State, by order of the Gov. and Counsel, is a matter of doubt. But surely every friend to his Country will readily agree, be that as it may. and as an individual do entreat you to send me such advice to govern my conduct at this alarming time. I have to acquaint you that Major General Lincoln wrote me a letter, dated the 30th of January last, requesting that I would endeavor to raise 500 light horse men, to go and join him as quick as possible, informing me that Sir Henry Clinton, in company with a large armament, in order to subdue the Southern States, the which, I have no doubt, you are acquainted. At the time that I received his letter I was preparing for the Assembly, not doubting but that the Assembly would readily agree to send a further aid to South Carolina. I wrote to nine Counties, requesting that the field officers should raise one hundred men in each County as volunteers to go to South Carolina; I proposed going myself. I shall now wait your orders. I requested the Cols. to rendezvous the men the 12th day of March next. Pray, Sir, send me your orders as quick as you may think necessary, for I am at this time really distressed at the alarming situation of my Country. There is one thing I request of your Excellency, that you would omit signing any grants for land in Burke County, that lies on the Mulberry Fork of the middle Creek, or otherwise called Johns River, or if such Grants are signed I crave that they do not issue until

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a further hearing be had, for I do assure you that a great deal of mischief will be done if grants be given for some Lands in these parts.

Excuse this imperfect scroll.

I remain your humbl. Serv't,