Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to George Muter, 13 March 1781

To George Muter

In Council, March 13. 1781.


On the first of the present invasion, I desired Col. Syme to superintend the removal of the Stores from Cumberland Town to Newcastle; as soon as we found that the enemy had fixed themselves at Portsmouth, as there was but little land carriage saved by bringing them to Newcastle, we discontinued it. Col. Syme never made me a report of the Articles which he had removed actually. Perhaps it may therefore be better to State those stores which were at Cumberland at the time of the invasion, as now under the joint head of Cumberland and Newcastle. I am, Sir, Your very hble servt.,

Th: Jefferson

Tr in War Office Journal (Vi).

Muter’s request of TJ on 13 Mch. (the preceding letter which has not been found) was undoubtedly inspired by the investigating committee headed by Mann Page that called on him on the afternoon of 12 Mch. (see notes to Muter to TJ, 12 Mch.). There is a MS in DLC: TJ Papers signed by Muter and headed “Memorandum of what is now at the Foundery 13th March 1781” which sets forth the following tabulation:

“16 Ship Cannon, 6 pounders, fit for use. } Foundry
18 Swevels
3000 6 pound Ball,
2000 4 pd. ditto
35 Cannon, of which 27 are rendered useless.
8 Cannon, 6 pounders, to Box
51 Cannon, Total
6 Cannon 6 Pounders at Richmond, made at the Foundery.

The six Cannon at Richmond are sold to Benjamin Harrison, Esq.; Twelve of those at the Foundery were made for Mr. William North, & with each of them a proportion of Ball is also disposed of. And a set of Guns for the State’s brig Jefferson were intended also.”

This inventory was probably compiled by Muter at the request of the investigating committee.

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