Petition of the Inhabitants of the Western Waters, in the County of Botetourt, Petition of the Inhabitants of Chincoteague Island, in the County of Accomack, Committee to prepare an Ordinance for an issue of Treasury Notes to the amount of one hundred thousand Pounds, for the publick service

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Richard Adams, Esq˙, a Delegate for the County of Henrico, laid before the Convention a Letter from Richard Randolph, Esq˙, bearing date the 15th of April, 1776, informing him that he should lay a complaint before the ensuing Assembly against him, respecting a report which had prevailed, of his (the said Adams) being instrumental to a forgery' s

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having been committed in the last book of publick claims, to the advantage of his brother, of £3; and informed the Convention he had waited till now in expectation the said Richard Randolph would have promoted the said inquiry, but as he had done nothing therein, he considered it as his duty to have the charge fully and publickly inquired into, as well in justice to the publick as to his own character.

Ordered, That the said Letter and information be referred to the Committee of Privileges and Elections; that they inquire into the matter thereof, and report the same, with their opinion thereupon, to the Convention.

A Petition of William Talbot was presented to the Convention, and read; setting forth, that being called upon, with others of the Militia, the 18th of April last, to go to the assistance of the Minute-men stationed at Sandy Point, in an engagement with two of the enemy' s tenders, he was in the engagement unfortunately shot through the arm and in his shoulder; that the commanding officer soon after sent him to Doctor William Rickman, who attended him to the 17th of May, whose account against your Petitioner amounts to £16 13s˙ 3d˙; and praying that, as he received the wounds aforesaid in the service of the country, the said account may be discharged by the publick.

Ordered, That the said Petition be referred to the Committee of Publick Claims; that they inquire into the matter thereof, and report the same, with their opinion thereupon, to the Convention.

A Petition of the Inhabitants of the Western Waters, in the County of Botetourt, was presented to the Convention, and read; setting forth, that by a former Ordinance of Convention they have been excluded from a tax on their lands, and have not the privilege of voting for Representatives or Committee-men for their County; and declaring their readiness to contribute in the common cause with the rest of their countrymen; they pray that they may be put upon the same footing with the inhabitants of the Western Waters of other Counties, and that a new election of Delegates and Committee-men may be appointed for their said County; that being more subject than other Counties to depreciations from the Indians, they request that some measures may be taken towards putting them in a proper state of defence.

Ordered, That the said Petition be referred to the Committee of Propositions and Grievances; that they inquire into the allegations thereof, and report the same, with their opinion thereupon, to the Convention.

A Petition of the Inhabitants of Chincoteague Island, in the County of Accomack, was presented to the Convention, and read; setting forth that, by a Resolve of the 21st of last month, they, among others, are directed to remove the live stock to some place of safety; that they assure this Convention they have the most fervent desire to do everything in their power to defeat the arbitrary designs of the enemies of American liberty, yet they presume it can answer no good purpose to make needless destruction of the property of any friends to the American cause; and if the stock belonging to them can be secured from the ravages of the enemy they hope the order relative to them will be relaxed; that there is a guard of thirty or forty men now stationed thereabouts, and with the Militia of their Island, and of one adjacent thereto, who are incorporated into a Company, they are humbly of opinion they shall be able to defend their stock against any small cruising vessels of the enemy, and to such alone are they accessible; that, however, they ask for no indulgence inconsistent with the publick good, and if it shall appear, in the course of the summer, that their stocks are insecure, they have not the most distant wish to keep them there; that if the Convention should be pleased to grant their request, they wish for the indulgence no longer than the Committee of their County shall think it prudent to continue it; that, if otherwise, they will cheerfully submit to whatever hardship or loss the publick safety may require.

Resolved, That the former Resolution of the Convention, directing the removal of all such live stock as are on the Islands on the Eastern-Shore, except as to Watts' s Island, be now rescinded.

Sundry Petitions of the Freeholders and other Inhabitants of the County of Spottsylvania, were presented to the Convention, and read; setting forth, that they labour under very great hardships in being obliged to travel some twenty odd,

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and others thirty miles, to attend general musters, which are constantly appointed at the Court-House in Fredericksburgh, situate on one side of the County, and therefore praying that an Ordinance may pass directing general musters for the future to be appointed at or near the centre of the County.

Ordered, That the said Petition be referred to the Committee of Propositions and Grievances; that they inquire into the allegations thereof, and report the same, with their opinion thereupon, to the Convention.

A Petition of sundry Inhabitants of the County of Caroline, was presented to the Convention, and read; setting forth that, by a late Ordinance respecting the Militia, Overseers are exempted from mustering, by which means the country is deprived of the assistance of many able-bodied young men, and praying that the said exemption may be recalled.

Ordered, That the said Petition be referred to the Committee of Propositions and Grievances; that they inquire into the allegations thereof, and report the same, with their opinion thereupon, to the Convention.

Whereas Samuel Flanagin and Manasses McGahey have been severally committed to the publick Jail in the City of Williamsburgh, charged with capital offences, for which they ought, in the regular course, to have been brought to trial, at a Court of Oyer and Terminer and Jail Delivery, on the second Tuesday in this month, which could not be held by reason of the present convulsions, and for want of a commission from the late Executive power; and whereas no method is yet adopted for the trial of criminals, and it might be thought inconsistent with the liberty which we are endeavouring to secure in the most permanent manner, to keep men charged with criminal offences in long confinement without bringing them to their trials, the Convention think it best to grant a pardon to the said criminals respectively, hoping that this lenity, together with the imprisonment they have undergone, will produce a sincere contrition and reformation of their manners, and that they may hereafter prove useful members to society.

Resolved, therefore, That a Pardon be prepared for the said Samuel Flanagin and Manasses McGahey, of all offences heretofore by them committed, and particularly of the crime with which they are respectively charged, setting forth the reasons for granting the same, as alleged in the premises, and declaring that this act of grace shall not hereafter be drawn into consequence or example; which pardon shall be signed by the President.

Ordered, That the Committee appointed to inquire into the offences of the several criminals confined in the publick Jail, do prepare a pardon for the said Samuel Flanagin and Manasses McGahey, agreeably to the foregoing Resolution.

The Convention then, according to the Order of the Day, resolved itself into a Committee on the state of the Colony; and after some time spent therein, Mr˙ President resumed the chair, and Mr˙ Cary reported that the Committee had, according to order, had under their consideration the state of the Colony, and had come to the following Resolutions thereupon; which he read in his place, and afterwards delivered in at the Clerk' s table, where the same were again twice read, and agreed to:

Resolved, That the sum of £100,000, for the purpose of supporting the Regular forces and Militia to be employed on the frontiers, and others which may remain on the pay of the Colony, for building vessels, and pay and provisions for the seamen and marines in the Navy, and all other publick claims, ought to be raised by an additional tax of 1s˙ 3d˙ on tithables, and of 1s˙ per hundred acres on land, payable in the year 1777, and each of the six following years.

Resolved, That Treasury Notes, to the amount of the said sum of £100,000, ought to be issued upon the credit of the said taxes, redeemable on the 1st day of January, 1784; and that £70,000 of such Notes be issued in dollars or parts of dollars.

Ordered, That Mr˙ Archibald Cary, Mr˙ Treasurer, Mr˙ George Mason, Mr˙ Starke, Mr˙ Henry Lee, Mr˙ Adams, Mr˙ Whiting, Mr˙ Dandridge, Mr˙ Bullitt, Mr˙ Johnson, Mr˙ Holt, and Mr˙ Williams, be a Committee to prepare and bring in an Ordinance pursuant to the said Resolutions.

Resolved, That tin' s Convention will to-morrow again resolve itself into a Committee on the state of the Colony.

The Convention took into consideration the Resolution

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directing some mode of trial for the delivery of Samuel Flanagin, Manasses McGahey, Habakkuk Pride, and Mary Howell, and ordered to lie on the table; which was again read and agreed to, with an amendment, as follows:

Resolved, That some mode of trial be adopted for the delivery of Habakkuk Pride and Mary Howell.

Adjourned till to-morrow, ten o' clock.