652 | From Thomas Gage

    New York 11th. July 1768.


    Your Letters of the 2d. & 3d. Inst:1 have been received, and I perceive that the Letter which I sent you directed for the Commander of His Majesty’s Forces at Halifax was sealed up; instead of being sent you under a flying seals: I therefore inclose you a Copy of said Letter,2 by which you will learn; that the order to the Officer Commanding at Halifax to embark Troops for Boston is Conditional in Case you should apply for the Assistance of the King’s Troops.

    It is needless for me to acquaint you, that it is contrary to the Laws and Constitution, for Troops to move to quell Tumults and Riots, unless Military Aid is required for those Purposes by the Civil Power; and that even then, the Troops cannot act by their own Authority, but are under the Command of the Civil Power, and must act solely in obedience thereto. My orders in these respects correspond with the Laws, and I could not give any other orders to the Officer Commanding at Halifax to embark Forces for Boston than those I suppose to have been forwarded to him, which empower him only to proceed in that Business, upon your Requisition to him for Military Aid.

    I am much obliged to you for your Care to forward my Dispatches to Halifax, and hope to send the two Letters for England which you entrusted to my Care in a few Days, by the Opportunity of a London Ship commanded by Captain Borton.3 And I shall take the same Care of any other Dispatches you shall commit to my Charge.

    I have the honor to be with great truth and Regards, Sir Your most obedient, & most humble Servant,

    Thos. Gage

    His Excellency Govr. Bernard

    ALS, RC     BP, 11: 107.

    Endorsed: Genl Gage d July 11 1768 r July 16. Enclosed a copy of Appendix 8, for FB’s perusal. Gage was replying to No. 641. FB’s rejoinder was No. 655.