Letters of Gov. John Penn

6/16/1765 Thomas Gage to Gov. Penn

A Letter from General Gage to the Governor.

“NEW YORK, June 16, 1765.
“I have the honor to transmit to you some Extracts of Letters
which I have received concerning the Proceedings of the Inhabitants
of Cumberland County, who appear daily in Arms, and seem to be
in an actual State of Rebellion. It appears, likewise, that the
“Rebels are supported by some of the Magistrates, particularly one
Smith, a Justice of the Peace, and headed by his Son. Unless
these Insurrections are immediately quelled, and the Authors and
Abettors of them brought to punishment, it is impossible to say
when they will end. If the King’s Troops are fired upon, and his
Forts threatned with Assaults by Men in Arms, headed by Magis-
trates, who refuse the ordinary Course of justice demanded of them
by the Officers. I can’t pretend to answer for the Consequences. It
belongs to you to point out the Measures proper to be taken in such
Circumstances, but it is my duty to represent these matters to you,
and to offer you every assistance in my power for the suppport of
Government, and to enforce an Obedience to the Laws, both which
seem in danger of entire Subversion.

“It is proper to acquaint you that a very large Convoy of Goods
went from New Orleans for the Illinois last February, & that it is
probable they are by this time arrived there. This makes it neces-
sary for us to open the Trade at Fort Pitt as soon as it is possible,
& that the Officers commanding there should be made acquainted
when the Traders may be expected, that he may give notice of it to
the Indians of Ohio, and prevent their going to the Illinois for their
necessarys. If the Trade is postponed at Fort Pitt, the Indians will
soon discover where supplys are to be had, & we shall drive them
again into the Arms of the French.

“I am, with great regard, Sir,
“Your most Obedt humble Servt.

“Honble. Govr. PENN.”

Source:  Minutes of the Provincial Council of Pennsylvania Volume IX

6/27/1765 Gov. Penn to William Smith

John Penn

A Letter from the Governor to Justice Smith, at Conegocheague.

PHILAD 27th June, 1765.

“I am to inform you that you have been lately charged with hav-
ing encouraged and protected the rioters in Cumberland County, in
their illegal and disorderly proceedings, and that you have suffered
your House to be made their place of Rendezvous; This was com-
plained of by Lieutenant Grant & Justice Maxwell to Lieutenant
Col” Reid, who communicated the same to General Gage; and his
Excellency has represented the matter to me, & sent me extracts
of the Colonel’s Letters, Copies of which I have sent inclosed
in a Letter this day wrote to the Magistrates of Cumberland upon the
Subject, and I desire to refer you more particularly to them for
the Complaint made of your Conduct. As it is necessary for your own
honour and my satifaction, that you should clear up the matter if
it can be done, I do require you, to appear before me at Philadel-
phia, on Tuesday the 30 day of July next, to anwer these new
Charges; on which Occasion I have, also, required Justice Maxwell
to be here.

“I am, Sir,
“Your most Obed humble Servant,


Source:  Minutes of the Provincial Council of Pennsylvania Volume IX