Queen's American Rangers
To his Excellency Sir H: CLINTON K.B.
Commander in Chief &c &c &c
The Memorial of Lt. Coll: Comdt. J Graves SIMCOE of the Queens Rangers
Your Memorialist begs leave to lay before your Excellency the following Extracts from the General Orders, relative to the Recruiting of the Provincial Corps.
Genl. Sr. Wm. HOWE's Orders July 3d 1777.
"The Provincial Troops, (except Wemyss Corps) are not to enlist Deserters from the Rebels."
Extract of Genl. Sr. H: CLINTONs Orders, May 30th 1778
"No Corps to entertain Irish Recruits except the Queens Rangers, Roman Catholick Volunteers & Volunteers of Ireland."
Extract of Major Genl. TRYON's Orders Feby. 1st 1780
"Deserters coming within the Kings lines from the Rebells, are not to be enlisted or engaged by, or for any Corps untill they are first brought to Head Quarters; after which the two following Corps, Vizt. the Queen's Rangers, & Volunteers of Ireland are to have liberty of enlisting such old Country men as may chuse to Engage with them; such men as do not incline to enter into those Corps may make their Choice in any other Corps they prefer- Deserters American Born to have liberty of enlisting in such Provincial Corps as they Chuse."
Your Memorialist submits to Your Excellency that the Queens Rangers raised to act in the manner its name specifies, & which is minutely dilineated in Major ROGERS Warrant; was to all intents & purposes what is termed a Free Battalion; that the Other Provincial Corps properly so called were raised by Gentlemen of supposed, or real Influence in the neighbouring Provinces, & was the mode in which Sr. Wm. HOWE hoped to call forth the Friends of Goverment into Action.
When Your Excellency was pleased to raise the Corps of Irish Volunteers, & to compose a Legion of British, your memorialist hoped that to the Queens Rangers, & these two Free Battalions the undoubted Right of Rebell Deserters would be confined at least those of the Old Country, as they are called, & to whom the Provincial Battalions had not the least Shadow of Claim;
your memorialist cannot but feel the Corps under his Command much injured, & the service by no means benefited, by M: Genl. TRYON's Order; as from the nature of its services, its distance from New York, & many Reasons that can be mentioned had not the Captains of the Queens Rangers given from their Pay a larger Bounty than any Provincial Corps, it must long ere now have dwindled into the Shadow of a Regiment.
Your Memorialist therefore hopes that Your Excellency will take these facts into Your Consideration.
J Graves SIMCOE
August 31st 1780
William L. Clements Library, Sir Henry Clinton Papers, Volume 120, item 11.
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