Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Mr. Mason NAILED it;

"...Threatened with the Destruction of our antient Laws & Liberty, and the Loss of all that is dear to British Subjects & Freemen,--justly alarmed with the Prospect of impending Ruin,--firmly determined, at the hazard of our Lives, to transmit to our Children & Posterity those sacred Rights to which Ourselves were born; & thoroughly convinced that a well regulated Militia, composed of the Gentlemen Freeholders & other Freemen, is the natural Strength, and only safe & stable Security of a free Government..."

"...And such of us as have, or can procure Riphel (Rifle?) Guns, & understand the use of them, will be ready to form a Company of Marksmen or Light-Infantry for the said Regiment, chusing our own Officers as aforesaid, & distinguishing our Dress, when we are upon Duty, from that of the other Companies, by painted Hunting-Shirts, and Indian Boots, or Caps; as shall be found most convenient.--Which Regulation & Establishment is to be preserved & continued, until a regular and proper Militia Law for the Defence of the Country shall be enacted by the Legislature of this Colony--And we do Each of us, for ourselves respectively, promise and engage to keep a good Firelock in proper Order, & to furnish Ourselves as soon as possible with, & always keep by us, one Pound of Gun Powder, four Pounds of Lead, one Dozen Gun-Flints, & a pair of Bullet-Moulds, with a Cartouch-Box, or powder-horn & Bag for Balls--That we will use our best Endeavours to perfect Ourselves in the Military Exercise & Discipline, & therefore will pay due Obedience to our Officers, & regularly attend such private & general Musters as they shall appoint--And that we will always hold Ourselves in Readiness, in Case of Necessity, Hostile-Invasion, or real Danger, to defend & preserve to the utmost of our Power, Our Religion, the Laws of our Country, & and the just Rights & Privileges of our fellow-Subjects, Our Posterity, & Ourselves, upon the Principles of the English Constitution...."

- February 6th. 1775 letter to George Washington.

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