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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Hugh Williamson to Alexander Martin
Williamson, Hugh, 1735-1819
November 18, 1782
Volume 16, Pages 459-460

[From Executive Letter Book.]

Philadelphia, Nov. 18th, 1782.


Inclosed is the Copy of a Letter that is just handed Congress by the Secretary at War. You will excuse me for not having made a fairer Copy of it. The Communications of this Week are not in my tour of duty but lest Mr. Nash should overlook it I have sent the Intelligence as it occurs. If the Assembly should sit on this Season possibly this Letter may overtake them, if so I hope they will turn their attention to the Western Country; those Lands are certainly in a very critical situation. The Spirit of Migration prevails to a high degree in these Middle States and the Spirit of making new States is become epidemic. It is certain that many of the small States or at least many of the inhabitants of those States encourage that Spirit. They look with an envious eye on the large

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States and wish to make us all of the Pigmy breed. The Assembly of this State have just received accounts that the Inhabitants in General over the Allegany Mountains are disposed to declare themselves Independent. There is the utmost reason to believe that the people of Vermont and their abettors in the Minor States are endeavoring to persuade the people in General on the Western Waters to revolt.

A petition was some time ago handed to Congress said to be from some people on the back of Virginia, praying to be erected into a State. On enquiry there was much reason to believe that the Petition did not originate in the Western Country & it is doubted whether three of those people had ever seen it. Having mentioned those facts I flatter myself that you will think with me that the utmost attention is required by our State to prevent if possible any bad impressions from being made on the citizens of the State on the Western Waters. The Spirit of our Government is so moderate & the general disposition of the Western Inhabitants is so good that I am at least convinced that our Subjects will be among the last who will run riot. As the State has shewn & I am persuaded ever will shew the utmost inclination to gratify their wishes & provide for the regular administration of Justice among them.

I have the honor to be,