Whitehall 9th Decr. 1758.
<Governors of Pensylvania, Maryland, Virginia, No. Carolina, So. Carolina.>
His Majesty having Nothing so much at Heart, as to improve the Great & Important Advantages gained the last Campaign, <in North America> as well as to repair the Disappointment at Tionderoge; and, by the most vigorous and extensive Efforts, to avert, by the Blessing of God on His Arms, all Dangers, which may threaten North America from any future Irruptions of the French; and the King not doubting, that all His Faithfull and Brave Subjects there, will <continue most> chearfully to cooperate with, and second to the utmost, the large Expence, and extraordinary Succours, supplied by this Kingdom for their Preservation & <future Security> Defence; And His Majesty considering, that the several Provinces from Pensylvania inclusive, to the Southward, are well able with proper Encouragements to furnish a Body of several Thousand Men, to join the King's Forces in those Parts, for some Offensive Operations against the Enemy; And His Majesty not judging it expedient to limit the Zeal & Ardor of any of His Provinces, by making a Repartition of the forces to be raised by Each, respectively, for this most important Service, I am commanded to signify to You the King's Pleasure, that you do forthwith use your utmost Endeavours & Influence with the Council & Assembly of your Province to induce them to raise, with all possible Dispatch, within Your Government; at least as large a Body of Men, as they did for the last Campaign, <The Words and Situation to be omitted to Pensylvania and No. Carolina. To Maryland, instead of the Words underlined. As large a Body of Men, as the Number and Situation of It's Inhabitants may allow (in the due Performance of which Service, It is hoped and expected they will not again fail in their Duty to the King, as they did the last Campaign> and even as many more as the Number and Situation, of Its Inhabitants may allow, And forming the same into Regiments, as far as shall be found convenient, that You do direct them to hold Themselves in readiness, as early as may be, to march to the Rendezvous, at such Place or Places, as may be named for that Purpose, by the Commander in Chief of His Majesty's Forces in America, or by the Officer who shall be appointed to command the King's Forces, in those Parts, in order to proceed from thence, in conjunction with a Body of His Majesty's British Forces, and under the Supreme Command of the Officer to be appointed as above, so as to be in a Situation to begin, by the First of May, if possible, or as soon after as shall be any way practicable such Offensive Operations, as shall be judged by the Commander of His Majesty's Forces in those Parts, most expedient for annoying the Enemy,[ & most efficacious towards removing and repelling the Dangers, that threaten the Frontiers of any of the Southern Colonies on the Continent of America]; And the better to facilitate this important Service, The King is pleased to leave it to You to issue Commissions to such Gentlemen of Your Province, as You shall judge from their Weight & Credit with the People, and their Zeal for the Publick Service, may be best disposed and enabled to quicken and effectuate the speedy Levying of the greatest Number of Men; In the Disposition of which Commissions, I am persuaded You will have nothing in View, but the Good of the King's Service and a due Subordination of the whole, when joined, to His Majesty's Commander And all Officers of the Provincial Forces, as high as Colonels, inclusive, are to have Rank according to their several respective Commissions, agreable to the Regulations, contained in His Majesty's Warrant of the 30th of December <1757> last Year.
The King is further pleased to furnish all the Men, so raised as above, with Arms, Ammunition & Tents, as well as to order Provisions to be issued to the same, by His Majesty's Commissaries, in the same Proportion and Manner, as is done to the Rest of the King's Forces. And a sufficient Train of Artillery will also be provided at His Majesty's Expence for the Operations of the Campaign: The whole therefore, that the King expects & requires from the several Provinces, is, the Levying, Cloathing, & Pay of the Men, And, on these Heads also, that no Encouragement may be wanting to the fullest Exertion of Your Force; His Majesty is farther most Graciously pleased to permit me to acquaint You, that strong Recommendations will be made to Parliament, in their Session next Year, to grant a proper Compensation for such Expences as above, according as the Active Vigour, and strenuous Efforts of the respective Provinces shall justly appear to merit.
It is His Majesty's Pleasure, that You do, with particular Diligence, immediately collect & put into the best Condition All the Arms issued last Campaign, which can be any ways render'd Serviceable, or that can be found within Your Government, in order that the same may be employed, as far as they will go in this Exigency. I am, at the same Time to acquaint You that a reasonable Supply of Arms, will be sent from England to replace such as may have been lost, or have become unfit for future Service.
I am further to inform You, that similar Orders are sent by this Conveyance, to Maryland, Virginia, No. Carolina & So. Carolina. The Northern Governments are also directed to raise Men in the same Manner, to be employed in such Offensive Operations, as the Circumstances and Situation of the Enemy's Possessions in Those Parts may point out, which, it is hoped, will oblige them so to divide their Attention & Forces, as will render the several Attempts more easy & successfull.
It is unnecessary to add any Thing to animate Your Zeal in the Execution of His Majesty's Orders on this great Occasion, where the future Safety and Welfare of America, and of your own Province in particular, are at Stake; And the King doubts not, from Your known Fidelity and Attachment, that you will employ yourself, with the utmost Application and Dispatch in this urgent and decisive Crisis.
I am &c.
Draught to the Southern Governors
Whitehall 9th Decr. 1758.
by Packet Boat, & Duplicate Decr. 29th
by Admiralty Vessel, & Triplicate by
Packet Boat Janry. 13.