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[71]

Chapter 45:

Condition of the central provinces.


July—October, 1775.

in the colonies which were not immediately involved
Chap. XLV.} 1775.
in the war, the officers of the crown should have shown self-possession and forbearance. Adopting this system, William Franklin, the governor of New Jersey, was ever on the alert to soothe, divide, or confuse the patriots, professed an equal regard for the rights of the people and the royal prerogatives, continued the usual sessions of the assembly, and where the authority of his office was diminished, confined himself to complaint, remonstrance or advice. But the self-organized popular government moved side by side with that of the king; the provincial congress which assembled in May, and again by adjournment in August, directed a general association, took cognizance of those who held back, assumed the regulation of the militia, apportioned a levy of ten thousand pounds, excused the Quakers from bearing arms, though not from contributing

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