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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Richard Caswell to David Campbell
Caswell, Richard, 1729-1789
February 23, 1787
Volume 20, Pages 616-617

(From Executive Letter Book.)

Kinston, 23d February, 1787.


I had the Honor of receiving a letter from you of the 30th of November last, whilst at the Assembly sitting at Fayetteville, and intended at the close of the Session to have written you in Answer but the Multiplicity of business in making out Commissions and other Papers for the Members on their setting Out, Prevented me. Your Reasoning on the Necessity and propriety of establishing the Independence of the people on the Western Waters from this Government, to unprejudiced minds, and those as well informed of the situation of those people as myself, would, if persons from amongst those very people who had not represented Circumstances and things in a different point of view, I have no doubt had its proper weight & Brought about the desired object, but for the present, it is presumed they will return to the laws & Government under which they first settled that Country. For my own part I have been perfectly satisfied from my acquaintance with that Country in the year 1781, that nature never designed

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the settlers there to be longer under the same Government with the people here, than their numbers Abilities and opulence would enable them to support a Government of their own, this I am also satisfied may easily be effected if those can be brought to agree among themselves and make a General application to the Legislature hereafter, returning to the former Government and agreeing to certain reasonable stipulations, somewhat similar to those held out by the State of Virginia to the Kentucky Districts. In full confidence that you would not hesitate in returning to the former Government, the General Assembly again Elected you to the office of Judge of Washington district and I have the Honor to enclose herewith the Commission. I expected to have seen Colo. Outlaw before he left Fayetteville and Conversed with him further on the subject of a separate Government, but did not return from this place to which I had occasionally retired, until he had set out from thence. This will be handed you by my son Winston Caswell who goes to Colo. Outlaw’s on business for me; any Civilities you are pleased to show him shall be gratefully Acknowledged. I shall be happy in your Correspondence whenever it may be Agreeable. Twelve Months hence, if I should live, I expect to be at liberty to pursue my own private concerns uncontrolled by public employment, when if age and infirmities incident thereto do not prevent me I promise myself the satisfaction of visiting again the Western Counties and hope to have the pleasure of Waiting on you,

in the mean time with Esteem and respect I am, Sir
Your most obedient & very humble Servant,