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[484] and evening; but during the long and anxious period,
Chap. L.} 1773. Dec.
their Journal has only this entry: ‘No business transacted, matter of record.’1

At ten o'clock on the fifteenth, Rotch was escorted by his witnesses to the Custom-house, where the Collector and Comptroller unequivocally and finally refused to grant his ship a clearance, till it should be discharged of the teas.

Hutchinson began to clutch at victory; for, said he, it is notorious the ship cannot pass the Castle without a permit from me, and that I shall refuse. On that day, the people of Fitchburg pledged their word ‘never to be wanting according to their small ability;’ for ‘they had indeed an ambition to be known to the world and to posterity as friends to liberty.’ The men of Gloucester also expressed their joy at Boston's glorious opposition, cried with one voice that ‘no tea subject to a duty should be landed in their town,’ and held themselves ready for the last appeal.

The morning of Thursday the sixteenth of December, 1773, dawned upon Boston, a day by far the most momentous in its annals. Beware, little town; count the cost, and know well, if you dare defy the wrath of Great Britain, and if you love exile and poverty and death rather than submission. The town of Portsmouth held its Meeting on that morning, and, with six only protesting, its people adopted the principles of Philadelphia, appointed their Committee of Correspondence, and resolved to make common cause with the Colonies. At ten

1 Journal of Committee of Correspondence, VI. 463, 464.

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