From Henry Laurens
10th March 1778
My last to your Excellency was under the 5th Inst. by sharp, the same day your Excellency’s favor of the 27th Ulto came to hand & was presented to Congress, but I have received no Commands respecting the Contents.
Inclosed herein Your Excellency will receive two Acts of Congress of the 7th Inst.
1. for restricting the power of granting furlough’s.1
2. for holding a general Fast on Wednesday 22d April.2
I have the honour to be with great Regard & Esteem &ca.
LB, DNA:PCC, item 13. A notation in the letter book indicates that this letter was sent “by Barry.”
1. For the text of this resolution, see General Orders, 15 Mar. (see also JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds. Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789. 34 vols. Washington, D.C., 1904–37. description ends , 10:230).
2. Nothing that the “Almighty God, in the righteous dispensation of his providence, hath permitted the continuation of a cruel and desolating war in our land,” Congress ordered the fast so that the inhabitants might “implore the mercy and forgiveness of God; and beseech him that vice, prophaneness, extortion, and every evil, may be done away; and that we may be a reformed and happy people; that they may unite in humble and earnest supplication, that it may please Almighty God, to guard and defend us against our enemies, and give vigour and success to our military operations by sea and land; that it may please him to bless the civil rulers and people, strengthen and perpetuate our union, and, in his own good time, establish us in the peaceable enjoyment of our rights and liberties; that it may please him to bless our schools and seminaries of learning, and make them nurseries of true piety, virtue and useful knowledge; that it may please him to cause the earth to yield its increase, and to crown the year with his goodness” (ibid., 229–30).