21 November 1774589

    Boston November 21st 1774

    Dear Sir

    As Nothing interesting which I am at Liberty to communicate has taken place since your departure from hence, except such matters as you could not fail of being informed of by the publick papers, I have defered writing to you, knowing that upon first arrival in London, you would be greatly engaged in forming your Connections with the friends of this Country, to whom you had been recommended. Our friends, who have been at the Continental Congress, are in high spirits on account of the union which prevails throughout the Colonies. It is the united voice of America to preserve their freedom or lose their lives in defense of it. Their resolutions are not the effects of inconsiderate Rashness, but the sound result of sober inquiry and deliberation. I am convinced that the true Spirit of Liberty was never so universally diffused through all ranks and orders of People, in any Country on the face of the Earth as it now is through all North America.590 The provincial Congress met at Concord at the time appointed; about 260 Members were present. You would have thought yourself in an Assembly of Spartans or ancient Romans, had you been a witness to the Order which inspired those who spoke upon the important business, which they were transacting. An injunction of secrecy prevents my giving any particulars of their transactions, except such as by their express order were published in the Papers; but in general you may be assured that they approved themselves the true Representatives of a wise and brave people, determined at all events to be free. I know I might be indulged in giving you an account of our transactions, was I sure this would get safe to you; but I dare not as the times are, risque so important intelligence. Next Wednesday the 23rd Instant, we shall meet again according to adjournment. All that I can safely communicate to you shall be speedily transmitted. I am of opinion that the dissolution of the british Parliament, which we were acquainted with last week, together with some favourable Letters received from England, will induce us to bear the inconvenience of living without government until we have some farther Intelligence of what may be expected from England; it will However require a very masterly policy to keep the Province for any considerable time longer in the present state. The town of Boston is by far the most moderate part of the Province. They are silent and inflexible. They hope for relief, but they have found by experience that they can bear to suffer more than their oppressors, or even themselves thought possible. They feel the Injuries they receive; they are the frequent subject of Conversation, but they take an honest pride in being singled out by a tyrannical Administration as the most determined enemies to arbitrary power. They know that their merits, not their crimes, have made them the objects of ministerial vengeance. We endeavour to live as peaceably as is possible with the soldiers; but disputes and quarrels often arise between the Inhabitants and the Troops. General Gage has made very few new manuvres since you left us; he has indeed rendered the Entrenchments at the entrance of the Town as formidable as he possibly could. I have frequently been sent to him on Committees and have several times had private conversations with him. I have thought him a man of honest, upright principles, and one desirous of accommodating the difference between great Britain and her Colonies in a just and Honorable way. He did not appear to be desirous of continuing the quarrel in order to make himself necessary, which is too often the case of Persons employed in publick affairs; but a copy of a letter via Philadelphia, said to be written from him to Lord North, gives a very different cast to his character. His answer to the provincial Congress which was certainly ill judged, I suppose was the work of some of that malicious group of Harpies whose disappointments make them desirous to urge the Governor to drive every thing to extremes.591 But in this letter (if it be genuine) he seems to court the office of a Destroyer of the Liberties, and Murderer of the People of this province: but you have doubtless read the paper and thought with Indignation on the contents. I wish to know of you how affairs stand in great Britain, and what was the principle motive of the dissolution of Parliament. If the late acts of Parliament are not to be repealed the wisest Step for both Countries is fairly to separate, and not spend their blood and treasure in destroying each other. It is barely Possible that Britain may depopulate North America; but I trust in God she never can conquer the Inhabitants and if the cruel experiment is made, I am sure whatever fortunes may attend America that Britain will curse the wretch, who to stop the mouths of his ravenous pack of dependants, bartered away the wealth and Glory of her Empire. I have not time to say more at present, than to assure you that from this time you may expect to hear from me, news or no news by every vessel, and that my earnest wish is that your abilities and integrity may be of eminent service to your Country.

    I am dear Sir you most obedient Servant,

    Joseph Warren