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"At a Meeting of the Delegates of every Town and District in the County of Suffolk ..."

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[From the Supplement to the Massachusets-Gazette, 15 September 1774.]

At a Meeting of the Delegates
of every Town and District in the County of
Suffolk, on Tuesday the Sixth of September, at
the House of Mr. Richard Woodward of Dedham,
and by Adjournment at the House of Mr. Daniel
Vose of Milton, on Friday the Ninth Instant,
JOSEPH PALMER, Esq; being chosen Moderator,
and WILLIAM THOMPSON, Esq; Clerk, a Com-
mittee was chosen to bring in a Report to the
Convention, and the following being several Times
read and put Paragraph by Paragraph, was
UNANIMOUSLY voted, Viz.

WHEREAS the Power, but not the Jus-
tice; the Vengeance, but not the Wis-
dom of Great-Britain, which of old
persecuted, scourged and exiled our
fugitive Parents from their native
Shores, now pursues us their guiltless Children with
unrelenting Severity -- And whereas this then sa-
vage and uncultivated Desart was purchased by the
Toil and Treasure or acquired by the Valor and
Blood of those our venerable Progenitors, who
bequeathed to us the dear bought Inheritance, who
consigned it to our Care and Protection; the most sa-
cred Obligations are upon us to transmit the glori-
ous Purchase, unfettered by Power, unclogg'd with
Shackles, to our innocent and beloved Offspring.
On the Fortitude -- on the Wisdom and on the Exer-
tions of this important Day, it suspended the Fate
of this New World, and of unborn Millions. --
If a boundless Extent of Continent, swarming with
Millions, will tamely submit to live, move and have
their Being at the arbitrary Will of a licentious
Minister, they basely yield to voluntary Slavery, and
future Generations shall load their Memories with
incessant Execrations. -- On the other Hand, if we
arrest the Hand which would ransack our Pockets,
if we disarm the Parricide who points the Dag-
ger to our Bosoms, if we nobly defeat that fatal
Edict which proclaims a
Power to frame Laws for
us in all Cases whatsoever, thereby entailing the
endless and numberless curses of Slavery upon Us,
our Heirs and their Heirs for ever; if we success-
fully resist that unparallelled Usurpation of uncon-
stitutional Power, whereby our Capital is robbed of
the Means of Life, whereby the Streets of Boston
are thronged with military Executioners, whereby
our Coasts are lined, and Harbours crowded with
Ships of War, whereby the Charter of the Colony,
that sacred Barrier against the Encroachments of
Tyranny is mutilated, and in effect annihilated;
whereby a murderous Law is framed to shelter Vil-
lains from the Hand of Justice; whereby that
unalienable and inestimable Inheritance, which we
derived from Nature, the Constitution of Britain,
which was covenanted to us in the Charter of the
Province, is totally wrecked, annulled and vacat-
ed; -- Posterity will acknowledge that Virtue which
preserved them free and happy; and while we en-
joy the Rewards and Blessings of the Faithful, the
Torrent of Panegyrick will roll down our Reputa-
tions to that latest Period, when the Streams of
Time shall be absorbed in the Abyss of Eternity.

Therefore, WE HAVE RESOLVED, AND
DO RESOLVE,

1. That whereas his Majesty GEORGE the
Third is the rightful Successor to the Throne of
Great-Britain, and justly entitled to the Allegi-
ance of the British Realm, and agreeable to Com-
pact
, of the English Colonies in America. -- There-
fore we the Heirs and Successors of the first Plan-
ters of this Colony, do chearfully acknowledge
the said GEORGE the Third to be our rightful
Sovereign, and that said Covenant is the Tenure
and Claim on which are founded our Allegiance
and Submission.

2. That it is an indispensable Duty which we
owe to GOD, our Country, Ourselves and Poste-
rity, by all lawful Ways and Means in our Power,
to maintain, defend and preserve those civil and
religious Rights and Liberties for which many of
our Fathers fought -- bled -- and died; and to
hand them down entire to future Generations.

3. That the late Acts of the British Parliament
for blocking up the Harbour of Boston, and for
altering the established Form of Government in
this Colony; and for screening the most flagitious
Violators of the Laws of the Province from a legal
Trial, are gross Infractions of those Rights to
which we are justly entitled by the Laws of Na-
ture, the British Constitution, and the Charter of
the Province.


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4. That no Obedience is due from this Pro-
vince to either or any Part of the Acts abovemen-
tioned; but that they be rejected as the Attempts
of a wicked Administration to enslave America.

5. That so long as the Justices of our Superior
Courts of Judicature, Court of Assize, and General
Goal Delivery, and Inferior Courts of Common
Pleas in this County, are appointed, or hold their
Places by any other Tenure than that which the
Charter and the Laws of the Province direct;
they must be considered as under undue Influence,
and are therefore unconstitutional Officers, and as
such no Regard ought to be paid to them by the
People of this County.

6. That if the Justices of the Superior Court of
Judicature Court of Assize, &c Justices of the Court
of Common Pleas, or of the General Sessions of the
Peace, shall sit and act during their present dis-
qualified State this County will support and bear
harmless all Sheriffs and their Deputies, Consta-
bles, Jurors and other Officers, who shall refuse
to carry into Execution the Orders of said Courts:
And as far as is possible to prevent the Inconve-
niencies that must attend the Suspension of the
Courts of Justice, we do earnestly recommend it
to all Creditors to exercise all reasonable and ge-
nerous Forbearance to their Debtors, and to all
Debtors to discharge their just Debts with all
possible Speed, and if any Disputes concerning
Debts or Trespasses shou'd arise, which cannot
be setled by the Parties, we recommend it to them
to submit all such Causes to Arbitration; and if
the Parties or either of them shall refuse so to do,
they ought to be considered as co-operating with
the Enemies of this Country.

7. That it be recommended to the Collectors of
Taxes, Constables and all other Officers who have
publick Monies in their Hands, to retain the same,
and not to make any Payment thereof to the Pro-
vince or County Treasurers, untill the Civil Go-
vernment of the Province is placed upon a consti-
tutional Foundation, or untill it shall otherwise
be ordered by the proposed Provincial Congress.

8. That the Persons who have accepted Seats
at the Council Board by Virtue of a Mandamus
from the King, in Conformity to the late Act of
the British Parliament, entitled, "An Act for regu-
lating the Government of the Massachusetts-Bay,"
have acted in direct Violation of the Duty they
owe to their Country, and have thereby given
great and just Offence to this People. Therefore,
    Resolved. That this County do recommend it
to all Persons who have so highly offended by
accepting said Department, and have not already
publickly resigned their Seats at the Council Board,
to make publick Resignations of their Places at
said Board, on or before the TWENTIETH Day
of this Instant September; and that all Persons
neglecting so to do shall from and after said Day
be considered by this County as obstinate and in-
corrigible Enemies to this Colony.

9. That the Fortifications begun and now car-
rying on upon Boston Neck are justly alarming to
this County, and give us Reason to apprehend
some hostile Intention against that Town, more
especially as the Commander in Chief has in a
very extraordinary Manner removed the Powder
from the Magazine at Charlestown, and has also
forbidden the Keeper of the Magazine at Boston
to deliver out to the Owners the Powder which
they had lodged in said Magazine.

10. That the late Act of Parliament for esta-
blishing the Roman Catholic Religion, and the
French Laws in that extensive Country now call-
ed Canada, is dangerous in an extreme Degree
to the Protestant Religion, and to the civil Rights
and Liberties of all America; and therefore as
Men and Protestant Christians we are indispensi-
bly obliged to take all proper Measures for our
Security.

11. That whereas our Enemies have flattered
themselves that they shall make an easy Prey of
this numerous, brave and hardy People, from an
Apprehension that they are unacquainted with
military Discipline, We therefore for the Honor,
Defence and Security of this County and Province
advise it has been recommended to take away
all Commissions from the Officers of the Militia,
that those who now hold Commissions or such
other Persons be elected in each Town as Officers
in the Militia as shall be judged of sufficient Ca-
pacity for that Purpose, and who have evidenced
themselves the inflexible Friends to the Rights of
the People, and that the Inhabitants of those
Towns and Districts who are qualified do use their

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utmost Diligence to acquaint themselves with the
Art of War as soon as possible, and do for that Pur-
pose appear under Arms at least once every Week.

12. That during the present hostile Appear-
ances on the Part of Great-Britain, notwithstand-
ing the many Insults and Oppressions which we
most sensibly resent; yet nevertheless from our
Affection to his Majesty which we have at all Times
evidenced; we are determined to act merely upon
the Defensive, so long as such Conduct may be
vindicated by Reason and the Principles of Self-
preservation, but no longer.

13. That as we understand it has been in Con-
templation to apprehend sundry Persons of this
County who have rendered themselves conspicu-
ous in contending for the violated Rights and Li-
berties of their Countrymen, we do recommend,
that, shou'd such an audacious Measure be put in
practice, to seize and keep in safe Custody every
Servant of the present tyrannical and unconstitu-
tional Government throughout the County and
Province, untill the Persons so apprehended be
liberated from the Hands of our Adversaries, and
restored safe and uninjured to their respective
Friends and Families.

14. That untill our Rights are fully restored to
us, we will to the utmost of our Power ( and re-
commend the same to the other Counties) with-
hold all commercial Intercourse with Great-Britain
Ireland and the West Indies, and abstain from the
Consumption of British Merchandize and Manu-
factures, and especially of East-India Teas and
Piece Goods, with such Additions, Alterations
and Exceptions only as the Grand Congress of the
Colonies may agree to.

15. That under our present Circumstances it is
incumbent on us to encourage Arts and Manufac-
tures amongst us by all Means in our Power, and
that Joseph Palmer, Esq; of Braintree, Mr. Ebe-
nezer Dorr
of Roxbury, Mr. James Boies and
Mr. Edward Preston of Milton, and Mr. Natha-
niel Guild
of Walpole, be and hereby are appointed
a Committee to consider of the best Ways and Means
to promote and establish the same, and report
to this Convention as soon as may be.

16. That the Exigences of our public Affairs
demand that a provincial Congress be called, to
concert such Measures as may be adopted and vi-
gorously executed by the whole People; and we
do recommend it to the several Towns in this
County, to chuse Members for such a Provincial
Congress, to be holden at Concord on the second
Tuesday of October next ensuing.

17. That this County confiding in the Wisdom
and Integrity of the Continental Congress now
sitting at Philadelphia, will pay all due Respect
and Submission to such Measures as may be re-
commended by them to the Colonies, for the Re-
storation and Establishment of our just Rights ci-
vil and religious, and for renewing that Harmony
and Union between Great-Britain and the Colo-
nies, so earnestly wished for by all good Men.

18. Whereas the universal Uneasiness which pre-
vails among all Orders of Men, arising from the
wicked and oppresive Measures of the present Ad-
ministration, may influence some unthinking Per-
sons to commit Outrage upon private Property: --

We would heartily recommend to all Persons of
this Community, not to engage in any Routs,
Riots, or licentious Attacks upon the Properties of
any Person whatsoever, as being subversive of all
Order and Government; but by a steady, manly,
uniform and persevering Opposition, to convince
our Enemies that in a Contest so important, in a
Cause so solemn, our Conduct shall be such as to
merit the Approbation of the Wise, and the Ad-
miration of the brave and free of every Age and
of every Country.

19. That should our Enemies, by any sudden
Manoeuvres, render it necessary for us to ask the
Aid and Assistance of our Brethren in the Count-
try, some one of the Committee of Correspon-
dence, or a Selectman of such Town, or the Town
adjoining, where such Hostilities shall commence
or shall be expected to commence, shall dispatch
Couriers with written Messages to the Selectmen
or Committees of Correspondence of the several
Towns in the Vicinity, with a written Account of
such Matter, who shall dispatch others to Com-
mittees or Selectmen more remote, 'till proper and
sufficient Assistance be obtained; and that the
Expence of said Couriers be defrayed by the
County, untill it shall be otherwise ordered by the
Provincial Congress.

Attest. WILLIAM THOMPSON, Clerk