religiously to its instructions against independence,
and to oppose altering the least part of their invaluable constitution.’
The next day the committee of inspection of the city of Philadelphia
came together with Mackean as chairman, and addressed a memorial directly to the continental congress, setting forth, that the assembly did not possess the confidence of the people, nor truly represent the province; that among its members were men who held offices under the crown of Great Britain
, and who had been dragged into compliance with most of the recommendations of congress only from the fear of being superseded by a convention; that measures had now been taken to assemble a convention of the people by men whose constituents were fighting men, and were determined to support the union of the province with the other colonies at every hazard.
The members of the assembly became uneasy: in
the first days of June no quorum appeared; on the fifth the proceedings of Virginia
, directing her delegates to propose independence, were read in the house.
No answer was returned; but a petition from Cumberland county
, asking that the instructions to the delegates of Pennsylvania
might be withdrawn, was read a second time, and a committee of seven was appointed to bring in new instructions.
Of its members, among whom were Dickinson
, and one or two loyalists, all but Clymer
were, for the present, opposed to independence.
The instructions of Pennsylvania
, which they reported on the sixth, conceded that the revolutionists were in the right; ‘that all hopes of a reconciliation, on reasonable terms, were extinguished;’ and nevertheless,