Letter of Transmittal. ix
in the bay were constantly called upon for help, they were of little use because
their greater draught prevented their following the light enemy vessels up
the shallow creeks. When finally a sufficient force of Maryland barges had
been assembled to give promise of success in ridding the bay of these scourges
and was about to sail for Tangier Sound, peace was declared.
In the summer of 1782 a considerable contingent of the French troops of the
army of Rochambeau was encamped in Annapolis and an even larger number
in Baltimore. While the privates were taken care of in their own encampments,
the record shows that suitable provision for the housing of the officers pre
sented a delicate problem which the Council found great difficulty in solving.
The arrival of Rochambeau in Annapolis August 11, 1782, with his troops,
was celebrated by a public reception and the reading of an address of welcome
in the name of the Governor and Council. Although the Governor at the re
quest of the Assembly had previously by proclamation celebrated on June 25
the recent birth of the Dauphin, formal congratulations upon the event were
again offered to the Count.
It is interesting to note that with the cessation of active hostilities, certain
rather humane amenities were observed between the belligerents. We find the
Council, January 30, 1783, “dictated by motives of humanity” requesting
Admiral Robert Digby in command of the British fleet, to issue a passport to
Edward Giles described as a gentleman of Maryland, an officer of the American
Army and a delegate to Congress now suffering from” a disorder of the breast”
(undoubtedly tuberculosis of the lungs), to proceed to Bermuda for his health in
his own vessel with a companion and slaves to attend him, and requesting the
Admiral to make recommendations to the Governor of the Island on his behalf.
Giles died a week or two later before the request could be acted upon. Per
mission was given to Thomas Jenings, a prominent and wealthy resident of
Annapolis and a former attorney-general, to have shipped to him from New
York through the enemy lines various articles for personal use which he had
ordered in England before the Revolution and which had been lying there
since its capture by the British, including such essentials as laced ruffled shirts.
embroidered waistcoats, and a copper plate engraved with his coat of arms.
We also note permission granted to Dennis Ryan of Baltimore to go to New
York with his company of comedians and their properties. Authority was given
various individuals to proceed to New York for business or family reasons
and to enter the enemy's lines there A few weeks after the Surrender at
Yorktown, Washington is asked for a flag of truce to permit the representa
tives of Cecil County to proceed to New York to secure the restoration of the
public records of that county, which had been carried off by General Howe
in 1777 when he passed through the Head of Elk in his advance on Philadelphia.
Not only was the Council incessantly struggling with the problem of securing
sufficient funds to meet its requirements, but it was engaged in a constant
squabble with that most important state official, the Intendant of the Revenue,
Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer, as to their respective powers in the handling
of the public funds, and at times the dispute became very acrimonious. After