433 | To Henry Seymour Conway

    Boston Jan 19 1766


    In some of my former letters upon the commotions of this Country, I have given in my Opinion that the Worst that could happen should be expected & provided against.1 I have not as yet had Any occasion to alter this opinion but am more & more assured that the people of the Town who have now got all the power in their hands, will know no bounds, untill the Authority of Great Britain shall interpose with effect. And even that is to be contested, if the frequent declarations of the people are to be credited: for Nothing is more familiarly asserted in common conversation, than the Ability of this people to oblige Great Britain to grant them their own Terms. Indeed this is cheifly Among the lower kind of people: but they have learned their lesson from those who should know better; & are encouraged in it by a neighbouring Colony, who don’t mince the Matter but speak plain. I should not however have troubled your honour with idle talk (for such I’ve hoped it will prove in the end) if from some late observations, it did not seem to be more serious than at first one would imagine. For which purpose I have made diligent enquiry into the truth of a report, that the People of New York had sent Agents to Connecticut & Boston to concert what Number of Men might be depended upon to assist in opposing the Kings Forces entring New York. The following Narrative (on the next Sheet)2 I took from the Mouth of a Gentleman, who was present at the time & place, & gave an exact account how & from whom he had the particulars. The two Agents said to be dispatched to Boston, if they really came, managed their business so as not to be noticed. About the same time came here a professed Agent from Connecticut to consult about the general business of opposing the Stamp Act. But He was so open & unreserved in his negotiation, that I cannot beleive he was charged with so dangerous a commission as concerting the raising Men. I beleive the proposal hereafter particularised comes from the lower sort of people: but it is of so dangerous a tendency, that I could not excuse ^myself^ informing your honor of it. Great Pains have been taken to persuade the people that they may resist Great Britain with effect: whereas Nothing can be more idle. New York & Boston would both be defenceless to a royal Fleet: and they being possessed by the Kings Forces, no other Town or Place would stand out.

    I am, with great respect, Sr Your most obedt & most humble Servt

    Fra. Bernard.

    The Rt Honble H. S. Conway Esqr.

    P.S. I send this by Ensign Miller of the 45th Regt & shall direct him to attend the Office, that if your honor should be pleased to enquire of him Concerning the Temper of the people in this Country he may be ready to answer.

    ALS, RC      CO 5/755, ff 447-449.