Journals of the Continental Congress

Second Continental Congress: April 23, 1776

April 23, 1776

Canada is the center of Congressional attention. John Adams cites the wisdom of his barber on the three political divisions in Philadelphia and where they meet.

Link to date-related documents.

Journals of the Continental Congress [Edited]

Resolved, That the resignation of Major General Ward, and of Brigadier General Fry, be accepted.

The Committee of Claims reported that there are two claims due.

Ordered, That they be paid.

The Marine Committee, recommended agents for prizes in the several colonies.

The committee, to whom the letters from General Washington, General Schuyler, and the letters from Canada and Pittsburg were referred, brought in their report.

Resolved, that no continental Troops are exempt from being sent into Canada.

Resolved, that an Expedition against Detroit be undertaken.

Resolved, that proper measures be taken to send Schoolmaster, and Clergyman, Farmer and Blacksmith, to the Delawares, agreeable to the Promise of Congress.

Resolved, That Congress recognize Colonel Hazen’s attention to the public good.

Resolved, That three hundred thousand dollars be immediately sent to General Schuyler, for supplying and paying the army in Canada.

Resolved, That the commissioners from Congress to Canada, publish an Address to the people of Canada, signifying, that Congress has been informed of injuries done by our people to some of them: expressing our resentment at their misconduct, assuring them of our attachment to their security; inviting them to state their grievances to our commissioners, and promising ample redress to them, and exemplary punishments to the offenders.

Resolved, That instructions be sent to the commissioners that justice to be delivered to the Canadians.

Resolved, That the commanding officer in Canada, be directed to be very attentive to military discipline, and inflict exemplary punishment on all who shall violate the military regulations established by Congress.

Resolved, That existing regulations are defective.

Resolved, That General Washington be directed to send six battalions into Canada from the army at Now York.

Resolved, That a letter be written by the president to General Washington, requesting his opinion whether any further additional troops are necessary to be sent for the reduction of Quebec, and for the security of Canada; and, if he shall think more troops necessary, whether they can, with safety, be spared from the army now in New York?

Resolved, That if any of the troops from New Jersey or Pennsylvania be sent to Canada, they shall be adequately paid.

Resolved, That the further consideration of the report be postponed until tomorrow.

The several matters to this day referred, being postponed,

Adjourned to 10 o’Clock tomorrow.

John Adams to Abigail Adams

“This is St. George’s Day, a Festival celebrated by the English, as Saint Patrick’s is by the Irish, St. David’s by the Welsh, and St. Andrew’s by the Scotch. The Natives of old England in this City heretofore formed a Society, which they called Saint George’s Club, or Saint George’s Society. Upon the Twenty third of April annually, they had a great Feast. But the Times and Politics have made a schism in the society so that one Part of them are to meet and dine at the City Tavern, and the other at the Bunch of Grapes, Israel Jacobs’s, and a third Party go out of Town.

One set are staunch Americans, another staunch Britons I suppose, and a Third half Way Men, Neutral Beings, moderate Men, prudent Folks-for such is the Division among Men upon all Occasions and every Question.”

This is the Account, which I have from my Barber, who is one of the Society and zealous on the side of America, and one of the Philadelphia Associators.

Edited with commentary by Gordon Lloyd.