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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Thomas Nelson to Thomas Burke
Nelson, Thomas, 1738-1789
August 10, 1781
Volume 15, Page 598

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Richmd., Aug. 10th, 1781.


The inclosed Letter from the President of Congress was put into my hands yesterday which I open'd by mistake.

The line of Express being now established I hope we shall keep up at least a weekly correspondence.

In my last I inform'd you that the Enemy had embark'd very considerable part of their force and were fallen down to Hampton Road, with intention of moving either up the Bay or to N. York, but contrary to the expectation of every one they have taken post at York and Gloster where they will make themselves so strong that it will be difficult to force them out.

There is a matter on which almost the existence of this State and that of the Army depends and to which I beg your immediate attention. By a late Resolution of Congress the Bermudians are declared to be on the same footing with the Americans as the Inhabitants of the other British Islands, which is in fact declaring that their Vessels shall be legal prize to any American Vessels that may take them, and that they shall have no commercial connection with the United States, which they have hitherto enjoyed in a small degree as to the Article of Provisions. By this means we used to get now & then Salt brought to us for those necessaries, tho' in small quantities, but which, with some assistance from other Islands, was sufficient for our necessary purposes. Our Ports being block'd up and this chance of procuring Salt from the Bermudians taken from us, I know not how we are to be supplied with it, unless you can assist us by securing what you have already in the State and adopting some plan for importing further.

As it is probable this will be the seat of War, we have very little prospect of being able to import any, and without it, it will be impossible to support the Army. I mention this matter for your consideration as in my opinion the Interest of the South is deeply concern'd in it.

I am with great respect, Your obed. ser.,
His Excellency, Governor Burke.