A website from the Massachusetts Historical Society; founded 1791.

Robert Treat Paine Papers, Volume 3

From David Cobb
Cobb, David RTP
Taunton October 10th 1775 My Dear Sir,

I have receiv’d your two Letters from Philadelpa. & am conscious of an omission in writing, but I dare say you’ll not impute to neglect when you are inform’d that I have had neither sleep to my Eyes nor slumber to my Eyelids since you left Taunton.

A number of Men of War & Transports appear’d off Bristol last Saturday & there demanded a quantity of Cattle & Sheep. Upon refusal of the Inhabitants (who, by the bye, where then very sickley) they Cannon’d & Bomber’d the Town for three hours, but happely without distroying any lives, except Parson Burt,1 who died thro’ fear, as is suppos’d, being found dead in his Cornfield the next morning. The Inhabitants being thus distress’d & terrefied desir’d the Ships to stop their fireing & they wou’d accomidate the matter. Accordingly they consented to leave the Town if they wou’d give ’em 40 Sheep, which was accordingly comply’d with. Thus ended this pritty d—ble affair a fine precedent for the future to git provisions.

Our Friends & Famelies are at present all well. Little Charles soon after you went away was seiz’d with a dangerous sore throat, a disorder common to Infants, which bro’t him to the Gates, but by the skilfullness of his Physician & good nursing he’s happely recover’d to a good state of health.

Your Farming business is in a good scituation. Salt Petre business I shall inform you more perticular about hereafter. There is little or nothing done about, with us, at present. Our public affairs you must be better inform’d of than I can possible do it. Doctr. Church’s affair is the only Topic of the Day. How are the mighty fallen! I have wrote this Letter in great haste in Father Adam’s Shop, Coll. Williams being in waiting to convey it to Head Quartrs. Please to send by every oppertunity News papers etc., perticular please to send the Journal of the Congress. Remember me to the Deligates of this Provence. Your Wife & Family join in 96their Love & Regards to you, they mean to write by the next oppertunity. I am sincerely Your Friend & Humble Servant

David Cobb

While I am writing this I receiv’d your Letter from Hartford.

RC ; endorsed.


Rev. John Burt (1716–1775) was minister of Bristol, R.I. ( Sibley’s Harvard Graduates , 10:29–31).