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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Proclamation by Alexander Martin concerning loyalists
Martin, Alexander, 1740-1807
July 28, 1783
Volume 16, Pages 850-851

[From Executive Letter Book.]

State of North Carolina.

A Proclamation.

Whereas, The Honorable the General Assembly passed an act of Pardon & Oblivion, at their last session, wherein it is enacted “That the said Act shall not extend to pardon or discharge, or give any benefit whatsoever to such persons (being citizens of this State) who have taken Commissions, or have been denominated officers, and acted on such, under the King of Great Britain, or to such as are named in any of the laws commonly called confiscation laws, or such who have attached themselves to the British, and continued without the limits of this State and not returned within twelve months previous to the passing the said act, or to Peter Mallet, David Fanning, and Samuel Andrews, or to any person or persons guilty of deliberate and wilful murder, robbery, rape and house burning; but that they be precluded from the said Act of Pardon and Oblivion notwithstanding.” In order to bring such offenders to justice as are excepted out of said Act, I have thought proper, by and with the advice of the Council of State to issue this my Proclamation, requiring and commanding all officers, civil and military, in this State to use their endeavours to apprehend such persons of the above description that they may be dealt with according to Law, (those who have been acquitted in the Courts of Justice

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or been pardoned, excepted;) and all the good Citizens of this State are hereby required to be aiding and assisting in this service, as they will answer the contrary at their peril.

And, whereas, divers ill disposed persons, late inhabitants of this State, or some one of the United States, who withdrew from the same and attached themselves to the King of Great Britain in the late war, or were expelled fro being obnoxious to the Laws, since the suspension of hostilities between Britain and America, are daily intruding themselves into this State without any authority, under colour of carrying on trade and various other pretences, to the great uneasiness and disturbance of the good and virtuous Citizens thereof; that the public peace be supported, now happily restored, and a general harmony diffused, I do further order and command all such persons who have arrived into this State since the first day of May last, or who shall arrive without having first obtained leave from the executive, immediatley to depart the same; and I do strictly prohibit the return of all and every the said persons until the Legislature shall please to determine on the subject, on the pains and penalties that shall ensue, and that this Proclamation be not evaded, but strictly complied with, I hereby require all officers, and the good Citizens of this State as aforesaid, to enforce the due observance of, and obedience thereto.

Given under my hand and the great Seal of the State, at Halifax, the Twenty-eighth day of July, in the year of our Lord, one thousand seven hundred and eighty three, and eighth year of the independence of the said State.

By His Excellency’s command.

God Save the State.