George Washington Papers

To George Washington from William Perkins, 14 May 1780

Providence 14th May 1780


I have been favour’d with your Excellency’s order of April 10th—have exerted myself ever since in procuring Teams, and with some difficulty have procured about Twelve continental Teams that will go forward to morrow loaded with Powder which is all I can muster at Present in this State.

The inclos’d is a Copy of a Resolve of the Council of War of April 8. & as Genl Gates left me with order to obey all orders from the Council & could do no less that comply as appears on the back of the enclosed Resolve; and likewise a Resolve of the Genl Assembly to leave more Powder than you have order’d me—would be glad of your Excellency’s orders in that Respect.

As the Assembly will not recommend the removal of any of the Stores by Water, & as the round Shott, Grape, Shells, old Small Arms, and many other things may be sent by water without damage, and with less expence, would desire to have your Advice on that Head; for to send them all by land by the Teams we now have, it will take the whole Summer to compleat the removal. Yr excellency’s most Obedient Huml Servt

William Perkins

DLC: Papers of George Washington.


Providence 7-8 April 1780 April 7th 1780.

To the Honble Council of War

The Petition of the Subscribers, Owners of the Sloop Argo humbly Sheweth—that they are about fitting the said Sloop for a Cruse against the Enemy of the United States—That as the present seems to be the best Time for making Captures from the Enemy, as well from the number of Transports that are expected, as from the small number of Cruseing Ships that the Enemy have on the Coast, and from the great probability there is of taking Provisions which may be of great Service to the Use of these States.

They request the Honourable Council to Lend them the War Stores excepting the Powder belonging to the Argo; the said Owners will give any Security that shall be required for the returning the said Stores when call’d for, and they in Duty bound will Pray &c.

Nichs Brown

Clark S. Nightingale

Joseph Brown

Paul Allen

In Council of War Providence April 8: 1780


that the prayer of this Petition be granted and that the Petitioners give Bond in the Sum of Two Hundred Thousand Pounds Lawful Money to return all the Articles they receive in the same Condition as they receive them; and in Case any of the Articles be expended or Lost that they then procure others of equal value, and return in the room of those Used or Lost.

And that Major Perkins and Esek Hopkins Esqr. be requested to take an Inventory of the same and deliver them to the Owners of of said Sloop and make return to the Genl Assembly or this Council.

a true Copy. Witness,

William Mumford Clk

Deliver’d on the within

10 6 lb. Iron Cannon. 24 Handspikes.
10 6 Ship Carriages. 12 Line Stocks.
12 6 Sponges & Hammers. 4 Portsire Stocks.
12 6 Ladles & Worms. 6 Iron Crow Bars.
12 6 Cartg Boxes. 2 Bridge Bols.
400 6 round Shott. 50 lb. Slowmatch.
200 6 Bags Grape. 20 Muskets.
53. 6 Bar Shott. 20 Cartg. Boxes.
9. 6 Gun Breechings. 200 Flints.
10 pr 6 Gun Tackles. 1 Arm Chest.
12 priming Horns. 1 Drum, and
12 Wires. 1 pr Drum Sticks.
12 Bitts.


State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.

In General Assembly. May Sessions 1780

Whereas his Excellency General Washington by his Order to Major Perkins for removing the Artillery and Millitary Stores from this State to Springfield in the Massachusetts State hath directed him to leave One Thousand Pounds weight of Powder for the Use of this State; and that Quantity being considerable short of what appears to be necessary for the Service of the State.

It is recommended to Major Perkins to leave over and above the said Quantity to the Amount of Fifteen Hundred weight in good Musquet Cartridges, and in Cartridges best suited to the Artillery & Cannon which belong to this State; each in due Proportion.

And it is farther recommended to Major Perkins to cause the Powder in Whipple Hall, saving the Quantity to be left as above, to be immediately removed by continental Teams, & as great Difficulties will attend the taking off from the Labours of the Season the number of Teams necessary for the removal of the whole of the Artillery and heavy Stores at once: It is further recommended that the Artillery and Heavy Stores be removed by Land as soon after the removal of the Powder as can be effected by the continental Teams, or such others as are willing to engage in that Service.

a true Copy Witness,

William Mumford D. Secry.

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