Vice Admiral Samuel Graves

to Philip Stevens, Secretary of the British Admiralty1

Preston Boston 15th May 1775

I have this moment by the Fowey's Tender received a Letter from Lord Dunmore, a Copy of which I inclose; I would readily send a two decked ship to Virginia, but the preservation of this post and perhaps the whole Army here depends upon the Naval Force in this Harbour. I therefore cannot in the present State of Affairs send any more of the Capital Ships from hence; indeed the Somerset is unfit to go, for notwithstanding her sheathing has been stripped off six Streaks and so much of her Bottom caulked, yet she makes the same quantity of water as before, and must therefor go to Halifax this Summer if possible.

Captain [George] Montagu of the Fowey informs me that the Contractor for supplying the King's Ships at Virginia with Provisions is forbid by the people to send any more, so what he now procured must be by Stealth.

I expect Captain [John] Linzee of the Falcon to arrive every hour with the Ship Champion; she has on board Eight hundred Barrels of Flour and some Corn intended for the Rebel Army.

I have given Orders to secure and bring to Boston all Vessels with Provisions agreeable to the Governor's request of Yesterday, a Copy of which I inclose, And we have written to the Governors of Quebec and Nova Scotia to facilitate the sending Supplies of fresh provisions and necessaries to Boston. We hope in a short time to have sufficient for the sick; but it is forbidden under pain of death by the Rebels at Cambridge to supply the Town of Boston.

Two Transports with Marines came in Yesterday, a Signal is now out for more, I hope they will be by Tomorrow.

I am [&c.]

Sam Graves

1. Graves's Conduct, I, 88, 89, MassHS Transcript.
Source: Naval Documents of the American Revolution, I, 337-8