General Court Martial of
[Proceedings of a General Court Martial held by Order of Major General John CAMPBELL commanding His Majestys Forces in West Florida; by Virtue of a Warrant from His Excellency Sir Henry CLINTON Knight of the Most Honorable Order of the Bath, General and Commander in Chief of all His Majestys Forces within the Colonies laying on the Atlantic Ocean from Nova Scotia to West Florida inclusive &c. &c. &c.]
Saturday 8th July 1780 Court met according to Adjournment; President and Members as before.
Captain Thomas STEPHENS being put on his Defence, produced it in Writing which being read is as follows—
Q: From the Prisr. Captn. STEPHENS to Lieut. Coll. ALLEN— Upon being Ordered to take Post on the Left of the Regiment on Monday Evening last, what was the Excuse I made, was it delivered in a low and respectful Manner or otherwise: was it admitted, and Leave of Absence given me, according to the best of your Knowledge, Information and Belief?
Q: From Prisoner Captn. STEPHENS to Lieut. Coll. ALLEN— From the Time of my Appointment to the Command of the first Light Infantry Company by General CAMPBELL, have I not always taken Post on the Right, except on Monday Evening last?
Q: from Captn. STEPHENS to Captn. KEY— After Captain JONES was Ordered into Arrest, and Colonel ALLEN called out to me, at what Distance do you think I was from him?
Q: from Capt. STEPHENS to Adjt. STERLING of the Regt. of Waldeck— After Captain JONES was Ordered into Arrest and Colonel ALLEN called out to me, at what Distance do you think I was from him?
Q: From Capt. STEPHENS to Lieut. CURRIE— When Captain JONES was ordered into Arrest and Colonel ALLEN called out to me, at what Distance do you think I was from him?
Q: from Captn. STEPHENS to Ensn. TODD— When Captain JONES was Ordered into Arrest and Colonel ALLEN called out to me, at what Distance do you think I was from him?
Evidence— William STAFFORD Surgeon’s Mate in the United Corps of Pensylvania and Maryland Loyalists being duly Sworn deposeth that on the Evening of Monday the 3rd July the Battallion being paraded, Captn. STEPHENS, Captn. JONES with several Gentlemen and himself were standing on the Left of the Battallion a little advanced in Front;
Captain STEPHENS was called upon by Lieut. Colonel ALLEN: Lieut. Coll. ALLEN was standing a little to the Right of the Center;
Captain STEPHENS advanced to Lieutenant Coll. ALLEN but what passed at that time he does not know.
After the Conversation of a few Seconds he saw Captain STEPHENS bow very respectfully to Colonel ALLEN, pull off his Sash, and advance between twenty & thirty Paces towards the Town;
Captain JONES was then called by Lieut. CURRIE in the following Manner, Colonel ALLEN’s Compliments and will be obliged to you if you will take Post on the Left;
Lieut. CURRIE in delivering this Request to Captain JONES had advanced half way between where Colonel ALLEN & Captn. JONES stood;
he did not hear Captain JONES say any thing, but he immediately advanced towards Colonel ALLEN, who advanced a few Paces to meet Captain JONES;
what passed between them was in such a low Voice, that he could not hear.
In a little time Colo. ALLEN turned from Captain JONES towards Captn. STEPHENS and called on Captn. STEPHENS in the following Manner, Captain STEPHENS, will you be so obliging as to take Post on the Left.
Captain STEPHENS immediately returned towards Colo. ALLEN:
he (the Evidence) did not observe Captain STEPHENS speak a word to Colonel ALLEN:
when Captn. STEPHENS was within a few Paces of Colonel ALLEN he heard the Colo. order him into Arrest.
Q: from Capt. STEVENS to Mr. STAFFORD— At what Distance was I from Colo. ALLEN when he called to me the second time.
Q: to the same— Did I immediately return back or continue on?
Q: to the same— Do you think at the Distance, I then was, that I could hear any particular Orders given me?
Evidence— Lieut. TOWNSHEND of the United Corps of Pensylvania & Maryland Loyalists being duly Sworn deposeth that on the Evening of the 3rd Instant he was standing on the Parade between Fifteen and twenty Paces from Lieut. Colonel ALLEN, and heard the Colonel call to Captain STEPHENS, upon which he (Captain STEPHENS) walked up to Colonel ALLEN:
they each took off their Hats, and seemed to have some Conversation together, uttered in a low Voice, and so indistinct that he could not hear what it was.
Captain STEPHENS left Colonel ALLEN and walked off in Front of the Parade.
Mr. CURRIE or Colonel ALLEN, does not recollect which, called to Captain JONES and asked him if he would take the Left of the Battallion,
on which Captn. JONES went up to Colo. ALLEN and after a short Conversation turned round, and the Colonel called to Captain STEPHENS a Second time,
and as Captain STEPHENS was stepping towards Colonel ALLEN, he heard the Colonel ask Captain STEPHENS if he and Captain JONES would be so obliging as to go to their Rooms, on which they both left the Parade.
Q: from Captn. STEPHENS to Lt. TOWNSHEND— At what Distance do you suppose I was from the Colonel, when he called to me a second time?
Evidence— Ensign McMICHAEL of the United Corps of Pensylvania and Maryland Loyalists being duly Sworn deposeth that on the Evening of the 3rd Instant, he was standing on the left of the Regiment when it was under Arms, and was in Conversation with Lieut. TOWNSHEND when he perceived Captain STEPHENS go up to Colonel ALLEN and take off his Hat:
the Colo. also took off his Hat:
the Colonel was between Fifteen or Eighteen Paces from where he (the Evidence) stood:
immediately after they had taken off their Hats a Conversation ensued which he could not hear.
After Captain STEPHENS had been with the Colonel for about a Minute, he seemed to be going towards the Town; at about Twenty or thirty Yards from the Regiment Captain STEPHENS turned to the Right and appeared to take off his Sash;
then Colonel ALLEN called Captn. JONES, who came up to him in the same Manner as Captain STEPHENS had done, and a Conversation ensued which he could not hear.
After some time Captain JONES left Colonel ALLEN and the Colonel seemed to be displeased, then Colo. ALLEN called to Captain STEPHENS and Captain JONES;
they came towards the Colonel who said to them, Gentlemen will you be pleased to go to your Rooms; upon which they left the Parade.
Evidence— Nehemiah HEYMAN Soldier in the United Corps of Pensylvania and Maryland Loyalists being duly Sworn deposeth that he saw Colo. ALLEN and Captn. STEPHENS take off their Hats, and heard nothing of the Conversation between Colonel ALLEN and Captn. STEPHENS but on the Colonel’s calling Capt. STEPHENS a second Time, heard him tell Captn. STEPHENS to be pleased to go to his Room.
Q: from Court to N: HAYMAN— Upon the Second Time of Captn. STEPHENS’s coming to Colonel ALLEN, might a Conversation have passed between them without your hearing it?
Q: from Court to the same— At what Distance was you from Colonel ALLEN and Captain STEPHENS?
Evidence— Henry WHITE Soldier in the United Corps of Pensylvania and Maryland Loyalists being duly sworn deposeth that on the 3rd of July he saw Colonel ALLEN and Captain STEPHENS walking and in Conversation, but could not hear what they said, and observed Captain STEPHENS walk to the Left about fifteen Yards and took off his Sash;
the Colonel afterwards called to Captain JONES;
some time after he (the Colonel) called to Captn. STEVENS again a Conversation ensued which he could not hear, but afterwards heard the Colonel say to Capt. STEPHENS, Sir will you be pleased to go to your Room.
Sentence— The Court having maturely considered the Evidence against the Prisoner Captain Thomas STEPHENS, together with his Defence, is of Opinion that he is guilty of the Crime laid to his Charge, which being a Breach of the fifth Article of the second Section of the Articles of War, he is thereby cashiered.
W. STIELL Lt. Colo.
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