George Washington Papers

To George Washington from the New York Committee of Safety, 18 April 1776

From the New York Committee of Safety

In Committee of Safety New York April 18th 1776


Your recommendation of Yesterday we took into consideration immediately on receipt of it. And thereupon framed the enclosed Resolves and Orders.1 We cannot sufficiently thank Your Excellency for Your most delicate Attention to the civil Government of this Colony; and beg leave to give You the strongest Assurances that we most eagerly embrace this as we shall every other oppertunity of cooperating with You in every Measure which shall come recommended to us with the Argument of public Utility. We are Sir with the greatest respect Your most obedient humble Servants

By Order of the Committee

William Paulding Chairman


William Paulding (1735–1825), an established merchant from Tarrytown, acted as chairman of the committee of safety at various times during the spring of 1776. On 10 Aug. 1776 the provincial congress appointed him commissary for the militia raised north of King’s Bridge by Gen. George Clinton. Paulding personally backed some of the debts that he incurred as commissary, and when the state and the Continental Congress later refused to reimburse him for them, he was ruined financially and spent some time in a debtor’s prison.

1The committee of safety’s resolves and orders of this date forbid the inhabitants of the colony to communicate with any of the king’s ships “either in Person or in writing . . . upon pain of being dealt with in the severest Manner as Enemies to the Rights and Liberties of the united North American Colonies.” The committee also directed that these resolves and orders be published immediately in handbills and newspapers and approved the text of this letter to GW (DLC:GW; see also N.Y. Prov. Congress Journals description begins Journals of the Provincial Congress, Provincial Convention, Committee of Safety, and Council of Safety of the State of New-York, 1775–1776–1777. 2 vols. Albany, 1842. (Microfilm Collection of Early State Records). description ends , 1:412–13, and GW’s Proclamation on Intercourse with British Warships, 29 April 1776).

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