2. On 28 Sept. 1774 Quincy sailed from Salem on a secret political mission to England that he had been persuaded to take by the whig leadership in Massachusetts. Gen. Gage, in a letter to Lord Dartmouth on 25 Sept. referring to the transmission of dispatches, remarked, “I understand that a Person whose Name is kept secret, goes on the same Vessell, and that there is something misterious concerning the Object of his Voyage” (Gage, Corr.
, 1:375). Seeing himself as the American minister, Quincy sought to gain information and, if possible, repeal of the Intolerable Acts. In the process he obtained interviews with Lord North, Lord Dartmouth, and various English whigs, but in the end he came to see conflict as inevitable. Carrying information of such importance that it could not be entrusted to the mails, he sailed for home, but died on 25 April, outside Gloucester Harbor, before he could communicate his intelligence (Josiah Quincy, Josiah Quincy, Jr
., Boston, 1825, p. 176–352; Sibley-Shipton, Harvard Graduates