Claims and Memorials
New York 10th May 1778--
Common report having insinuated that His Excelly. Sir Wm. HOWE will in all probability have quited Philadelphia, before a Letter from hence can reach him, I have taken the Liberty of offering the present address to you in Behalf of a Gentleman whose Zeal and Loyalty, merit in my Opinion the highest attention of Government--
Col. Stephen HOLLAND of Londonderry in the Province of New Hampshire has from the earliest Period of this unhappy Rebellion, uniformly distinguished himself in Opposition to the usurped Authority of that Province.-- His Influence in the Country, both with respect to Fortune and abilities, rendered him not less respected by the friends of Government, than dangerous in a high degree to the leaders of Sedition.--
The utmost Exertions were used to ruin him in his Fortune, and despotick power at last accomplished it-- The most flagitious Allegations were construed into Facts, without a single proof to support them, his Reputation branded, his Person loaded with Irons, and cast into a dungeon, in short his very Life was at stake for his Loyalty, when a fortunate opportunity favoured his Escape.-- He is now in this town, looking eagerly for employment, known to few, and in a manner forgot by all.--
Should it ever be the Wish of Government to withdraw from any Province in Rebellion, such of the Loyalists, who may be ready to risk their Lives & Fortunes in the Service of Britain, I know not from New Hampshire a Gentleman who is more likely by his address and Influence to accomplish that purpose than Col. HOLLAND.
I am perswaded Sir, if Col. HOLLAND has Rank given to him, to place him in a conspicuous Light with the Loyalists in New Hampshire and directed to repair to New Port Rhode Island, for the purpose of recruiting his Corps, a very respectable Body would be procured by that means from New Hampshire, whose Services to the British Cause, would be attended with the most beneficial Consequences-- But this Sir, I only throw out as a hint, it rests with you to adopt it as it may best suit your ideas of Propriety. I have the Honor to be with the greatest respect &c. &c.
P:S: Col. HOLLAND served in Goreham's Rangers during the Course of last War in America, at the Seige of Fort William Henry & at the taking of Quebec. His Character was that of an active, gallant Officer. After the Peace he commanded a Regiment of Militia, was a Member of the General Court, untill the breaking out of the present Rebellion--
The foregoing is ajust Copy of the Letter I wrote to Sir Henry Clinton K: B: on the 10th May 1778--
London 10th September 1785
Great Britain, Public Record Office, Treasury Office, Class 1, Volume 642, folio 249.
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