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British military leaders criticize the Declaration of Independence...

Item # 687342

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October 05, 1776

THE PENNSYLVANIA LEDGER, Philadelphia, Oct. 5, 1776 

* re. Declaration of Independence
* Rare Revolutionary War era title
* Tory issue from Pennsylvania
* Great year to have (1776)

This was a decidedly Tory newspaper, supportive of the British efforts in America. This newspaper ended publication in June, 1778 when the British evacuated the city.
The front page has an ad for the return of two seamen who deserted the service, one noted as: "...little pitted with the small pox, is pretty fat, and much given to drink and swearing." Also at the top of the front page is a terrific: "Declaration" signed in type by both: W. Howe and Richard Viscount Howe, in which they criticize the recent Declaration of Independence, and implore the people to return to their allegiance to England, noting in part: "Although the Congress, whom the misguided American suffer to direct their opposition to a re-establishment of the constitutional government, of these provinces have disavowed every purpose of reconciliation not consonant with their extravagant & inadmissible claim of Independence...The King being most graciously pleased...to reflect seriously upon their present condition and expectations & judge for themselves whether it be more consistent with their honor & happiness to offer up their lives as a sacrifice to the unjust & precarious cause in which they are engaged, or return to their allegiance, accept the blessings of peace..." and more.
Half of the front page & a bit of pg. 2 are taken up with a Speech signed in type by the governor of New Jersey, Wm. Livingston, in which he addresses his Assembly on the concerns of war. He begins by leaving no doubt as how he stands on the war: "Considering how long the hand of oppression had been stretched out against us; while the most assiduous applications for redress were either totally disregarded or treated with insult; How long the system of despotism concerted for our ruin had been insidiously pursued & was at length attempted to be enforced by the violence of war, reason and conscience must have approved the measure had we sooner abjured that allegiance...".
Page 3 has a nice account of a naval battle, as well as a letter from Long Island noting: "I am ordered by his Excellency the Honorable William Howe, General & commander in Chief of his Majesty's forces in North America...on the application by Nathaniel Woodhull and Samuel Philips, who have signified to him that the inhabitants of said county are desirous of laying down their arms & again becoming loyal & obedient subjects..." with more. This is followed by two more letters regarding those of Suffolk County, N.Y., returning their allegiance to the King.
Page 3 also has a lengthy list of the British ships serving in the war in America followed by several bits on the war including: "...a number of officers & privates belonging to the American army who had been taken prisoners in Canada arrived in this city..." and; "There being a most pressing necessity for blankets for the use of the army..." with more.
Four pages, small binding holes at the blank spine margin, some numeric notations in margins next to ads (this was the editor's copy), generally very nice condition.

Category: Revolutionary War