Thomas Nelson, Jr. on security of naval ships, Virginia, 1781

Contributed by Maine Historical Society


Thomas Nelson, Jr. (1738-1789) was a Virginia delegate to the Continental Congress. Originally from Yorktown, Virginia, Nelson served in the Virginia House of Burgesses and was a key player in the writing of the colony's constitution. He then served as General of the Lower Virginia Militia, where he lead troops into the siege of Yorktown in 1781. During this time, he was elected governor of Virgina.

The letter, written September 16, 1781 from Williamsburg, Virginia about one month before the Battle of Yorktown, expresses nervousness over the security of American shipping vessels. Nelson mentions that transporting flour will be incredibly inefficient unless they can acquire help from the French. He even calls for "an empty Transport or two," perhaps to throw off the British Navy.

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About This Item

  • Title: Thomas Nelson, Jr. on security of naval ships, Virginia, 1781
  • Creator: Thomas Nelson, Jr.
  • Creation Date: 1781-09-16
  • Subject Date: 1781-09-16
  • Location: Williamsburg, VA
  • Media: Ink on paper
  • Dimensions: 32.1 cm x 20 cm
  • Local Code: Coll. 420, Box 59/11
  • Collection: John S. H. Fogg autograph collection
  • Object Type: Text

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For more information about this item, contact:

Maine Historical Society
485 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04101
(207) 774-1822 x230

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