Narrative of Vice Admiral Samuel Graves1

[Boston] 20th [April 1775]

. . . general Orders were issued by him [the Admiral] to the respective captains & commanders of his Majesty's ships & vessels that all scows, sloops, schooners & boats of every Kind (except the fishing boats) should be brought as they could be picked up & Kept to the Southward of the long Wharf under the care of a Guard & none to be allowed to pass in the Harbour except with the Kings troops without his written leave; and every Ship was Kept clear for Action during the Night, with Boats armed alongside ready to be manned. The number of Guard Boats was doubled and every necessary direction given to the Ships in case the Rebels should attempt to force the lines, some thousands in Arms having already assembled at Roxburgh [sic! Roxbury]. Capt [Edward] LeCras was ordered to acquaint the Select Men of Charles Town that if they suffered the Rebels to take possession of their town or erect any works upon the Heights, the Somerset should fire upon them; Captain [John] Macartney at Nantasket had directions to keep a strict look out upon point Alderton, a report being spread that the Rebels intended to fortify it. Captain [Thomas] Bishop was ordered to caution the Inhabitants of Marblehead against assisting the Rebels upon pain of being considered as such and of having their Town destroyed. The Falcon Sloop was ordered to hawl as far into Gallows Creek to the Southward of Boston as possible. The Captain of the Nautilus off the Magazine point, was directed to arm a flat bottomed Boat, and with the assistance of Boats from other Ships to take care that Guard should be rowed every night as high up the River as possible. The Somerset was to suffer no person to cross the River without the Governors permission . . . And after Gunfiring in the Evening no Boat was to pass till day light, except those rowing Guard.2

1. Graves's Conduct, I, 74, 75, MassHS Transcript.
2. Most of the orders issued by Graves at this time are contained in the Appendix to his narrative.
Source: Naval Documents of the American Revolution, I, 202-3