James Madison Papers

Benjamin Harrison to Virginia Delegates, 1 December 1781

Benjamin Harrison to Virginia Delegates

FC (Virginia State Library).

Virginia Council Chamber December 1st. 1781


Inclosed you have two Resolutions of the General Assembly of this St[ate] respecting the feeding of the British Prisoners now with us. The Resolutions ind[eed] only prohibit the Impress of Provisions, but I would recommend it to you to [ask?] Congress immediately, to send a Commissary forward, or the Troops will suffer, perhaps starve, the State having no Means of procuring provisions.1 I have the Honor

Benjamin Harrison2

P S. The inclosed Extract of a Letter relative to the difficulty of procuring provisions coming to hand after writing the above, I thought it my Duty to inclose the same to you.3

2He was serving his first full day as governor (Journals of the Council of State description begins H. R. McIlwaine et al., eds., Journals of the Council of the State of Virginia (Richmond, 1931——). description ends , III, 1).

3Enclosure not found. The following note appears in the council journal of 1 December: “The Board also advise that the Information of one of the Commissaries, this moment received, relative to the difficulties of procuring provisions, be also inclosed to our Delegates. The Governor accordingly wrote a Letter to our Delegates which is ordered to be registered” (ibid.). Perhaps “one of the Commissaries” meant either William Armistead, Jr., state commissary of stores, or John Robertson, state inspector commissary of issues. During the latter half of November, “the difficulties of procuring provisions” were often called to the attention of the executive (Calendar of Virginia State Papers description begins William P. Palmer et al., eds., Calendar of Virginia State Papers and Other Manuscripts (11 vols.; Richmond, 1875–93). description ends , II, 606–24).

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