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July 4 1812: Baynes to Brock

On July 4 1812, Colonel Baynes, on staff with Sir George Prevost, writes to Major-General Brock, in Upper Canada. Baynes advises that Prevost has called the legislature to declare martial law but primarily to set up a paper currency to pay the militia. Baynes writes "The proclamation for declaring martial law is prepared, and will be speedily issued. All aliens will be required to take the oath of allegiance, or immediately to quit the province. Our cash is at its last issue, and a substitute of paper must per force be resorted to." Baynes letter is reproduced below.


Colonel Baynes to Major-General Brock.
Montreal
We have a report here of your having commenced operations by levelling the American fort at Niagara. The general is most anxious to hear good and recent intelligence from your quarter. There is no considerable assembly of troops in our neighbourhood as yet; the flank companies, embodied under Colonel Young, are on their march, and the 2,000 militia will form a chain of posts from St. John's to La Prairie. The town militia of this and Quebec, to the amount of 3,000 in each city, have volunteered being embodied and drilled, and will take their proportion of garrison duty to relieve the troops. The proclamation for declaring martial law is prepared, and will be speedily issued. All aliens will be required to take the oath of allegiance, or immediately to quit the province. Our cash is at its last issue, and a substitute of paper must per force be resorted to. This has been Sir George's principal object in calling the legislature together. You have a very arduous and difficult card to play, and have our sincere and confident wishes for your success. Sir George strongly recommends extreme moderation in the use of the Indians, and to keep them in control as much as possible.


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