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[221] materials of a printing office, so that he could publish
Chap. LV.} 1775. Oct.
from his ship a gazette on the side of the king. The outrage, as we shall see, produced retaliation.

In October, Dunmore repeatedly landed detachments to seize arms wherever he could find them. Thus far Virginia had not resisted the British by force; the war began in that colony with the defence of Hampton, a small village at the end of the isthmus between York and James Rivers. An armed sloop had been driven on its shore in a very violent gale; its people took out of her six swivels and other stores, made some of her men prisoners, and then set her on fire. Dunmore blockaded the port; they called to their assistance a company of ‘shirt men,’ as the British called the Virginia regulars from the hunting shirt which was their uniform, and another company of minute men, besides a body of militia.

On the twenty sixth Dunmore sent some of the tenders close into Hampton Roads to destroy the town. The guard marched out to repel them, and the moment they came within gunshot, George Nicholas, who commanded the Virginians, fired his musket at one of the tenders. It was the first gun fired in Virginia against the British: his example was followed by his party. Retarded by boats which had been sunk across the channel, the British on that day vainly attempted to land. In the following night the Culpepper riflemen were despatched to the aid of Hampton, and William Woodford, colonel of the second regiment of Virginia, second in rank to Patrick Henry, was sent by the committee of safety from Williamsburg to take the direction. The next day

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