<br /> Lee Letter: n340_0186

Washington and Lee University

Sender: Elbridge Gerry
Recipient: the Massachusetts Board of War


I am favoured with your Letter of Jany the
14th1 & beg Leave to inform You,
that Messrs. Joseph Gardoqui & Sons are directed to invest half the
proceeds of three Cargoes of fish which I lately sent them “with the
Effects that may be left of the Rockingham & Cargo in 100,000 good
musket Flints, 20 Tons Lead, 1000 Soldiers Blankets, 5000 Yds.
Ticklinburg suitable for Soldiers Tents, & the Residue in good
Muskets with Bayonets, to be procured in France if cheaper there than
at Bilbao, & shipped to a port northward of Boston.”
2 Had You been apprized of this Order I
should have wrote to Messrs. Guardoqui’s to have made the Alteration
proposed in your Letter, which may now be done by Mr Gerry Member of
the House (in my Behalf) if You still think the Articles which You have
mentioned are most wanted.3

The Express who will deliver You this is charged with Dispatches of great
Importance, to be sent with all possible Expedition to Europe by the
Council of your State;4 I wish no Time
may be lost in sending the packets to Sea, & shall be glad to be
informed on his Return, whether it is the Intention of the General
Assembly to be half concerned in the Cargoes above mentioned agreable
to the proposals made in my Letter to General Warren from Philadelphia
the 26th Novemr. last.

I think it best to order the other half in a seperate Bottom, thereby to
divide the Risque, &

remain Gentlemen, very respectfully your most
huml Sert,

Elbridge Gerry

P.S. If half the Cargoes are taken by the Assembly, It may be most
convenient to have the Articles ordered as aforesd or others in Leiu
thereof, shipped on their seperate Account, as they all will be sent in
one Bottom.


Receiver’s copy, Massachusetts Secretary of State, Archives Division,

1 The Massachusetts Board of War’s January 14, 1777, letter to Gerry is in
Morgan, Naval Documents, 7:949 – 50.

2 The closing of Gerry’s quote editorially conjectured.

3 For further information on the complex nature of Gerry’s business with the
Spanish merchants Gardoqui & Sons, see Gerry to Thomas Gerry,
February 21, 1777.

4 This day Richard Henry Lee wrote the following note to Gerry, Samuel Adams,
and William Whipple: “We have been not less disturbed than you by the
detention of our intelligence Vessel, and I am now, in consequence of
the Committees determination, preparing a letter to the
Commissioners. We propose sending 2 Copies to the Council of
Massachusetts & another to Philadelphia. The Express that lately
made such haste to & from Boston is the person we intend to
employ on this occasion. I wish Capt. Johnson would stay a day or
two, because Fulford may agree with this State, in which case Capt.
Johnson wd. be much wanted to take command of the Lexington, which
Vessel may be immediately employed to reconnoitre the enemy and
suppress their Tenders.” Samuel Adams Papers, NN. Capt. Henry Johnson
was appointed to command the Lexington on February 5. JCC, 7: 90