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The following letters, one from the Hon. Josiah Bartlett to the Committee of Safety in New Hampshire, and the second a reply from William Whipple, are believed to have been copied by Dr. Ezra Bartlett, son of Josiah. These were written prior to July 4, 1776. The comments (in italics) were written by the person who copied the letters.

Philadelphia PA
January 20th 1776


The Congress on the 8th inst voted to raise one Regiment in the Western parts of our Province for the service of Canada. The news of the misfortune at Qebeck arriving last thursday they have voted to give a bounty of forty shillings and advance one months pay to encourage the speedy enlisting & sending forward said Regiment I hope you will do every thing in your power to hasten it as the taking & securing Canada this winter & spring before the arrival of Brittish troops will be of almost infinite advantage to this Continent but more especially to new england & in particular to our Colony one Regiment will begin their march from this place for Canada in a few days ad one Regiment from New Jersies in a week or ten days=orders are given to raise as soon as possible for the same service one more Regiment in Pensylvania one Do New Jersey one western parts of new York one Do Connecticut beside that in our Colony it was moved yesterday & I expect will be voted today to raise one Regiment in the Massachusetts for the same service No cost or pains must be spared to secure that important Province of Canada--I beg leave to renew my request that delegates may be appointed & sent here as soon as my be as the Representing a Colony is too weighty & important to be left to one man I am sure I find too much for me In order to your seeing the necessity of a larger representation I would inform you that beside Committees for special purposes that are frequently chosen there are 4 or 5 standing Committees appointed some for secrecy some for dispatch some of which are entrusted with large powers and that there may be no cause for complaint they have appointed one delegate from each Colony on each of these Committees two or sometimes 3 of those Committees set at the same time so that tho I almost every night & morning before & after Congress attend the business yet our Colony is sometimes not represented when business of consequence is transacted by said Committees Beside being sometimes obliged to attend a Committee while the Congress is setting & so the Colony then loses it vote there I have been here almost five months great part of the time without a Colleague. I really find that I never knew what confinement with business was before and that I want more exercise of the body and less of the mind, at least for sometime hope soon to see Delegates here from our Colony and that I may return to my family and with my domestick affairs relax and unbend my fatigued mind. The 1200 dollars ordered by Congress to be sent to you to be used in the enlisting the Regiment I will forward as soon as I can please to write me of the affairs of our Colony as often as convenient particularly concerning raising the Regiment and as you are authorized to appoint the officers I know you will do it in the best manner you can & I hope you will so happy as to give general satisfaction

I am J. B.

minutes of a letter to the Committee of safety, N. Hampshire

"The foregoing is a copy of the copy of a letter written by Col. Josiah Bartlett to the Committee of safety of N. H. whilst a member of Congress at Philadelphia--The copy from which this was taken I forwarded thro the politeness of Dr. Oliver to Robrt Gilman of Baltimore who is forming an autographical Collection of those who signed the Declaration of Ind. Forwarded Jan 28th 1828." [Author unknown, but thought to be Dr. Ezra Bartlett, son of Josiah Bartlett]

"Copy of a letter from Wm Whipple to Col. Bartlett the original of which I sent on with the foregoing as Mr. Gilman was desirous of possessing the hand writing of Col. Wm. Whipple." [Notation thought to be made by Dr. Ezra Bartlett, son of Josiah]

Philadelphia 28th Mar 1776

Dear Sir

I am just returned from attending the remains of our worthy Friend Gov. WARD to the place appointed for all the human race his better part took its flight to world of spirits on Tuesday morning. this loss will be felt by Congress & no doubt greatly lamented by the colony he so faithfully represented. the corps was first carried to the meeting house in arch street where an excellent sermon well suited to the melancholly occasion was delivered by Mr. STILLMAN from thence to Mr. STILLMANs meeting house where it was deposited. My last was by Express to Cambridge including bill loading and invoice of your flour which I wish safe to hand but am something doubtful of it as the coast is much infested with pirates its reported that a 40 gunship is at the capes The Lexington is gone down. The M. C. have bot another ship which will be ready to sail in a week.
The Battery goes down to her station tomorrow & the Province ship will follow her in a few days. we have a report that our fleet is at South Carolina but no certain advice of it. I suppose you visited Boston in your way. pray give me a particular account how you found matters there--I have not yet received a line from any body concerned in publick affairs in New Hampshire I shall be glad to know what I have done to deserve such neglect. however I shall expect better things of you while you tarry. which I hope will not be long. settle your affairs as soon as possible & come away for I expect them Devils from the other side of the water very soon it is said they will be here by the middle of April--There is nothing new in papers however I send you one--Congress have not yet had time to take up the report on New Hampshire matters.

I am with great respect your real
Friend & Humble Servant


According to Genealogical and Biographical Sketches of the Bartlett Family in England and America, Levi Bartlett, 1875-6, pg.48, Josiah was chosen a delegate to the continental Congress, and repaired to Philadelphia in September. He remained until March, when he returned home; and, after a short stay, returned to Philadelphia, where he remained until the 17th of May. An interesting note is that a daughter, Hannah, was born December 13, 1776. Josiah and Mary's last child. [WMcN]


Contributed by Winifred Simkins McNabb, 3rd Great Granddaughter of Josiah Bartlett. Copies of these documents in her possession 1999.


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