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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Benjamin Hawkins to Abner Nash
Hawkins, Benjamin, 1754-1816
January 09, 1782
Volume 16, Pages 478-480


Philadelphia, January 9th, 1782.

Dear Sir:

Since my last by Mr. Allen we have no European intelligence, but the agreeable news, the reduction of St. Eustatius, St. Martin’s and Saba by the Marquis Buille, who has re-established their former government. This enterprise was well conducted and reflects the highest honour on the Marquis and his brave little corps.

The amazing efforts of the British last campaign and the events therefrom are strong and evident proofs that she cannot prosecute the War with any possible prospect of success. Their fleets are inferior, and consequently any distant operations must be very uncertain and destructive.

We have some pretty well authenticated reports that a reinforcement of troops and shipping are arrived from France at Martinique

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& that some combined operations are daily expected in that quarter from the State of the belligerent powers. We may safely conclude that there will be peace this Spring, or that the British possessions in the West Indies will be divided amongst her enemies and that she will not have an Army in the United States.

The New York paper announces the arrival of Lord Dunmore at Charlestown on his way to his Government of Virginia.

The People of Vermont are like to be troublesome to us. They would not acceed to the propositions made to them in August last, but continued to encroach on the Territory of New York and New Hampshire—the consequences were that the citizens of these States armed immediately, and they were like to have had an action, which was in some measure prevented by some of our Generals.

Congress have been rather inattentive to the repeated remonstrances of New York and New Hampshire, and some interested members thereof are said to have encouraged the people of Vermont in persevering in the support of their Claims. We now have this business before us, and I fear we have too few States in Congress to bring it to a speedy determination.

Miss Peggy has written as you will see. I think she will make a very amiable woman—she certainly improves. Her connexions are the first young Misses in this City. She was pleased to hear you were coming, and seems better satisfied. I might have said perfectly so.

Howell has been truly unfortunate, or rather we, in being concerned with him. I am much obliged to you for your offer of serving me in New Bern. I am perfectly convinced of your friendship.

Indigo rather dull sale at a dollar per lb. Dry goods (very plenty) three times their sterling cost in wholesale, or 2/6 currency for a French Livre, Rum 11/ per gallon by the quantity, sugar 6/ to 9/ per lb., as in quality. Note 7/6 is a dollar here.

Bever Hatts, 15 dollars,
Common good, 10 dollars,
Boots, 10 dollars,
Shoes, man’s, 17/6, ladies, 22/6.
These articles are made here.

Provisions in the market is in proportion to the last articles. Money is very plenty.

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I am very unwell to-day with a very bad cold and have written you an incoherent letter.

Pray give my respects to your lady, Mr. and Mrs. Ellis.

I am, Dear Sir, with sentiments of regard,
Your humble servt.,