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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Benjamin Lincoln to Richard Caswell
Lincoln, Benjamin, 1733-1810
March 03, 1780
Volume 15, Pages 348-349

[From Executive Letter Book.]

Charles Town, March 3rd, 1780.

Dear Sir:

I was yesterday favoured with your Excellency's favour of the 16th Ultimo. The strictest attention will be paid to the supplies, agreeable to your recommendation. I think that every exertion should be made for the relief of this Town, and not one moment should be lost in marching the Troops with all possible dispatch to its assistance. For little succour have we received from this State, or may we expect to receive, for the southern parts of it are invaded by the Enemy, and threatened with being plundered by the Tories, which keeps the Militia in that quarter at home, under a pretence at least of Guarding their families and securing their property. In another part, near the centre of the State, the people are in general disaffected, and the friendly are insufficient to restrain the unfriendly. The upper parts of the State are obliged to supply a very considerable force for the protection of themselves and the State of Georgia from the incursions of the Indians and others. The eastern parts of the State have GeorgeTown and the sea coast to guard from the detached and plundering parties. Thus you will observe, Sir, that if we expect any considerable force brought in from the Country we shall probably be disappointed, notwithstanding the exertions of the Executive to this purpose, which are evidenced by the inclosed proclamation.

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I am informed that your people can be supplied with cartridge boxes; I wish that matter might be attended to. We can give one thousand stand of arms more than have been given to your Militia now here. The Enemy have taken post on James Island, and are throwing up Batteries on it, one where Fort Johnson stood; they mean hereby either to annoy our shipping or to cover their own, should they be able to get into the harbour, perhaps both. From some parts of the Island they can reach the Town with their shots and shells, but the distance is very considerable. They have not strolled far into the Country, though they have a post at Stono on the Main. We are so superior to them in Cavalry that it is hazardous for them to do it.

I have the honour to be,
With the highest Esteem,
Your Excellency's most obedt. Servant,

P. S. A late insurrection near the centre of this State, in which some lives were lost, and the threats thrown out by the insurgents, are additional arguments to those above hinted to shew the necessity of early aid from your State.

B. L.
His Excellency Gov. Caswell.