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Robert Treat Paine Papers, Volume 3

From Joseph Palmer
Palmer, Joseph RTP
Watertown, Janry: 24th: 1776. My dear Sir,

I thank you for your late favr., but was exceeding sorry to find any misunderstanding between Friends, especially at this time of public danger; I don’t intend to meddle in this matter, any farther than to urge you both, as you regard the good of your distressed Country, to Stifle every private resentment, incompatable with the public good, & conduct yourselves in every respect as your Christian profession requires. I know that pride & illnature may put a construction upon my words, much to my disadvantage; but being conscious of right intentions, & depending upon the candour of a Friend, I have used plainess. I have no reason, Save from your Letter, to suppose that Mr. A has lessened, or endeavoured to lessen your influence; & I most Sincerely wish you may cordially unite in Council for our common safety. You may depend upon all the Support from me, that my abilities admit of, & more you can’t expect. This is all that I intend to say upon this very unhappy affair, & hope there will be no farther occasion.

Messrs. A & G will give you all the news, so ’twill be needless for me to say any thing of that. The Saltpetre Manufr. goes on, as ’tis said, very well; but I’ve seen but little of it yet; however, I do realy believe that a considerable quantity has been made, & that we have a very good method, if not the best, for making it: But I am afraid that we shall not continue our encouragemt., long enough to establish any large Manufactories, before the Trade opens, with some Nation or other; if we fail in such Establishmt., when Trade opens, the Mercht. will undersell the Manufacturer, & then the business ends; but if large Manufrs. are once established, we shall be able to make it as cheap or cheaper, than it can be imported; & from hence will grow large mfrs. of G Powder, wh. may be a large Article in our exports.


Pray let me hear from you as often as oppo. presents, & I will endeavour to write as often as I can; but we are crouded with business. Eunice was well a few days since; she is at Braintree. I am Dr. Sr. yr. Frd. & mo. hble. Servt.,


Mr. Greenleaf pray you to bring some writing paper he wou’d be glad to buy 2 a ream none to be had here.

RC ; addressed: “The Honble: Robert Treat Paine Esqr: Philadelphia”; endorsed.

From Thomas Cushing
Cushing, Thomas RTP
Watertown Jany. 24. 1776 Dear Sir,

I have received your Favor of the ninth Instant, am oblidged to you for the letter return’d, & also for the Information you have given relative to the arrival of Powder & salt petre. I give you joy upon this occasion & hope the Saltpetre will be immediately converted into Powder & forwarded with all possible dispatch to our Camp at Cambridge, where it is wanted; our Vessells have taken two prizes lately & carried them into Newbury port. One is a large Ship from London with Coal Beer and Cheese; the other Brigt. from Ireland with Provisions for the ministerial Army1; I have this moment been Informed that a Salem privateer has taken another Vessell from England loadened with 130 Chaldron of Coals 1400 Blanketts, Ten Tons of oatmeal & 100 pieces Ticklingburg.2 I am very glad I am releived from my attendance at Philadelphia, as I find it is most for my Interest to be here & People would not be easy without I returned & attended the office or another Judge was appointed in my room. In great haste I remain with respect, yr. most humble servant,

T. Cushing

Pray write me particularly how you go on at Congress. I shall write you again & more particularly.

RC ; addressed: “To The Honble. Robert Treat Pain Esq. at Philadelphia. Forwar’d by Mr. Gerry”; endorsed.


The ship Friends and brig Sukey were carried into Newburyport on Jan. 15, 1776. Their manifests appeared in the Essex Journal, Jan. 19, 1776.

142 2.

The schooner Boston Revenge (the first Massachusetts privateer, bonded on Dec. 7, 1775), commanded by Capt. Stephen Mascoll, captured the ship Jenny and carried her into Cape Ann on January 18 (Naval Documents of the American Revolution, 3:966). Ticklingburg (or ticklenburgs) is a kind of coarse linen cloth ( OED ).