Journals of the Continental Congress

Second Continental Congress: June 24, 1775

June 24, 1775

The draft of a Declaration to be announced by General Washington in Boston is debated. A Committee of Seven is created to put “the Militia of America in a proper state for the defense of America.”  Samuel Ward writes to his son in the Army.

Link to date-related documents.

Journals of the Continental Congress [Edited]

Ordered, That the first and second resolves passed 26 May be published.

Resolved, That a Committee of seven—Robert Treat Paine, Benjamin Harrison, Roger Sherman, Stephen Hopkins, William Floyd, Christopher Gadsden, and John Dickinson “be appointed to devise ways and means to put the Militia of America in a proper state for the defense of America.”

The Committee appointed to prepare a declaration to be published by General Washington, upon his arrival at the Camp before Boston, was read, debated, and referred for further consideration until Monday.

Resolved, that this Congress will on Monday resolve itself into a committee of the whole to take into consideration the State of America.

Adjourned until Monday at 9 o’Clock.

Samuel Ward wrote to Samuel Ward, Jr. (Son who was serving in the Army)

This is the first time that I ever wrote to a person whom I did not know whether to consider as one of this world or of the next; if Heaven has spared you, devote your Life to the Service of God and your Country; if you are wounded or a prisoner let the satisfaction that you are engaged in the Cause of God and Man support you; if neither let your heart overflow with gratitude to the great Preserver of Men; if you have been successful Humanity will direct the most generous treatment of our vanquished enemies at the same time that Wisdom directs the pushing the victory to the utmost; if you have met with a check, let a firm Reliance in the Justice of your Cause and the divine Protection give fresh vigor [to] rouse every generous sentiment in the Army as far as your little influence will extend and bravely exert every nerve in defense of your Country….

Major Mifflin, who does me the favor to deliver you this, is worthy of the greatest regard as a friend to his country.  I am afraid the common cause here will suffer much by his absence for he is almost the soul of the city.

Edited with commentary by Gordon Lloyd.