From James Bedout
ALS: American Philosophical Society
<Bordeaux, August 11, 1777, in English of sorts: I am a merchant captain, Canadian born, and have sailed in New England ships; my brother is in Washington’s army. I am therefore asking for a commission from Congress to cruise against the English tyrants. In expectation of it I have already bought here a Boston sloop, the Congress; her mate and some of her crew are American. She will be armed with twelve guns and loaded with war supplies, and I expect to sail late this month. So that I may destroy enemy ships on my way to New England, please send the commission in care of the Dutch commissary in this city.7>
7. On Sept. 2, having had no reply, he renewed his request. On the 8th BF wrote, in a letter now lost, that he could not grant it. On the 24th Bedout expressed his disappointment and his resolve to go anyhow; he asked for a letter of recommendation to Congress, for which he would wait until mid-October. APS.