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Frankfort six days, and left Lexington on the 8th or 9th of April.
He says, that the expedition of gen. Clarke, to open the free navigation of the Mississippi, which had been suspended apparently for want of money, had again revived, and it was said owing to a supply of money which had arrived by a Frenchman, said to be a major, but whose name the informant does not recollect.
That the boat builders and other artificers for the expedition had again recommenced, vigorously, their work at the rapids of the Ohio: That some persons of Kentucky, who had been appointed officers, had sold their property by auction.
That the measure of the expedition was openly advocated, and not opposed by any considerable numbers, but some did speak against it. That the President's proclamation had been received in Cincinnati, but he did not see any of them in Kentucky.
That they had provided some cannon and ammunition, and Mr. Gano was informed that they were casting more cannon at the iron works in Kentucky.
That it was understood that the inhabitants of Lexington had subscribed ammunition.
That Mr. Charles Smith, of Kentucky, informed Mr. Gano, that he had actually received a commission of a major; that upon the arrival of the French major with the money, he had received orders to hold himself in readiness to join with his troops at the rapids of the Ohio; but having more maturely reflected upon the business, he enclosed his commission to the said French major.
Extract of a Letter from Major Henry Gaither, command' ing the federal troops in Georgia, to the Secretary of War, duted St. Marfs, April 13, 1794.
': The French are going on with an expedition against the Floridas from this place, and appear to have many friends in this undertaking among the inhabitants of this state. There is now at anchor within musket shot of my fort the sloop of war Las Casas, of eighteen guns, with two hundred men, most of them French, and one company of them infantry; they are last from Charleston—They tay there are thirteen sail, equally large and well manned, yet to come from different parts in the United States. There is a recruiting post at Temple, eighteen miles up the river from this; the last accounts say, they have eighty men, and expect three hundred from the upper part of this state. This armament and land force they talk of will bo sufficient, they say, to take the Floridas as soon as they please. The sloop of war on her first arrival saluted the fort. I have not returned the salute—the captain and officers are much offended—this has caused me to begin a three gun fascine battery in front of the fort, and next the river, for my own defence., I shall be very particular with the French troops, and avoid every thing like giving offence. I don't mean to leave this until matters get better settled."
The foregoing is a true extract from the original letter on file in the War Office of the United States.
JNO. STAGG, Ju.v. Ch. CI. W. P.
May 15, 1794.
May 6, 1794.
Mr. John Holland, an inhabitant of Savannah, left that place on the 26th ult. in the sloop Harmony, capt. M'Cormack, and arrived here on the 5th of May.
This gentleman informs, that the French sloop of war Las Casas, supposed to belong to the French fleet lately from the Chesapeake, had landed some men on the island of Amelia, to the southward of the St. Mary's; and that they were there erecting some works, and had landed some cannon. That general Clarke was on the Georgia side of the St. Mary's with a few men; their numbers said to be various, from 150 to 300, but were daily augmenting; and it was supposed intended to join the French, and to take the oaths of allegiance to them, in order to invade the Floridas. Clarke was said to have provisions and ammunition. The people of Savannah strongly reprobated the measure. A person, name unknown, attempted to beat up for volunteers in Savannah, but he was forced to' desist, and to give bail in the federal court.
A captain of a privateer, named Curvin. also attempted to beat up, but was also obliged to give bail and desist.
The governour was daily expected in Savannah.
A col. Hammond from Savannah is one of the principal officers. He was of the continental troops during the late war.
, War Department, May 14, 1794.
Sir,—By certain information, recently received from Georgia, it would appear that a general Clarke and others have organized themselves into a military corps, within the limits of the United States, and are thence about setting out upon some military expedition against thedominions of Spain, with whom we arc at peace.
Any comments upon the illegality and criminality of such a conduct is entirely unnecessary to your Excellency, as you have already issued your proclamation against the design.
But it may be necessary that further and more effectual measures be taken to prevent, entirely, the expedition, and bring to punishment the authors, actors, and abettors thereof; otherwise the United States may become responsible for the consequences.
I am therefore desired by the President of the United States to request that your excellency will, if the same should be necessary, take the most energetick and decisive measures within your power for suppressing the said design. If the circumstances should require the employment of the militia, I am authorized to assure you, that it may be done at the expense of the United States ; and I am also directed to put under your direction the regular troops of the United States; for which purpose I have given lieut. col. Gaither the necessary orders herein enclosed. And I have also further directed John Habersham, Esquire, the agent for furnishing the supplies in Georgia, to afford every necessary aid of provisions and quarter-master's stores, which you may require for this object. I have the honour to be, &c.
H. KNOX. Secretary of War.
His Ex. the Governour of Georgia.
True copy, JNO. STAGG, Ju.v. Ch. Clk, W. D.
Extract of a Letter from the Secretary of War, to Lieutenant Col. Gaither, dated .May 14, 1794.
'' Sir,—If the governour of Georgia should call upon you to assist him with the publick force under your command, for the purpose of suppressing an illegal combination of men, alleged to be organized within the United States for the purpose of invading the dominions of Spain, you are promptly and cordially to place yourself and all the troops ana military stores under his orders for the said purpose."
True extract, JNO. STAGG, Jun, Ch, Clk. W. D.
Of THE PRESIDENT OP THE UNITED STATES TO CONGRESS. MAY 21, 1794.
I Lay before you in confidence, sundry papers, by which you will perceive the state of affairs between us and the six nations, and the probable cause to which it is owing. —And also, certain information, whereby it would appear that some encroachment was about to be ma'dc On our territory, by an officer and party of British troops. Procceding on a supposition of the authenticity of this information, although of a private nature, I have caused the representation to be made to the British minister, a copy of which accompanies this message.
It cannot be necessary to comment upon the very serious nature of such an encroachment, nor to urge, that this new state of things suggests the propriety of placing the United States in a posture of effectual preparation for an event, which, notwithstanding the endeavours making to avert it, may, by circumstances beyond our control, be forced upon us,
PROM THE PRESIDENT OP THE UNITED STATES TO COK-GRESS. MAY 23, 1794.
I Lay before you the copy of a letter from the minister. plenipotentiary of his Britannick majesty, in answer to a voi.. H. fi
letter from the Secretary of State, communicated to Congress yesterday; and also the copy of a letter from the Secretary, which is referred to in the above mentioned letter of the minister.
Philadelphia, May 20, 1794.
Sir,—It cannot be unknown to you, that a speech, said to be addressed on the 10th of February, 1794, to several Indian nations, and ascribed to the governour general of his Britannick majesty at Quebec, has appeared in most of the publick prints in the United States.' With so many circumstances of authenticity—after remaining so long without contradiction; it might have justified us in inquiring from you, whether it was really delivered under British authority. Our forbearance thus to inquire is conformable with the moderation which has directed the conduct of our government towards Great Britain, and indicates at the same time our hope from the declarations of yours, that its views would prove ultimately pacifick, and that it would discountenance every measure of its officers, having a contrary tendency.
Even now, sir, while I entertain a firm persuasion, that in assuming this speech to be genuine, I cannot well err; I shall be ready to retract the comments, which I am about to make, if you shall think proper to deny its authenticity.
At the,very moment when the British ministry were forwarding assurances of good will, does Lord Dorchester foster and encourage in the Indians hostile dispositions towards the United States. If it was a part of the American character to indulge suspicion; what might not be conjectured as to the influence, by which our treaty was defeated in the last year, from the assembling of deputies from almost all the nations, who were at the late general council on the Miami; and whose enmity against us cannot be doubtful? How nearly would that suspicion approach to proof, were we to recpllect that so high an officer as himself, would not rashly hazard this expression: "I should not be surprised if we are at war with the United States in the course of the present year; and if we are, a lrne must then be drawn by the warriours."