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Instructions to the Officers

Committee of Arrangements, New York. November 25, 1776.

Note on the e-text: this Renascence Editions text was provided by Risa S. Bear, University of Oregon. It is in the public domain. The source text was a facsimile copy of a broadside provided by the widow of a Continental soldier in connection with a claim; the original is in the National Archives, Washington, D.C., USA. Content unique to this presentation is copyright © 2002 The University of Oregon. For nonprofit and educational uses only. Send comments and corrections to the Publisher.


T O  T H E
A P P O I N T E D  T O  R E C R U I T

I N  N E W-Y O R K,

F O R  T H E   S E R V I C E   O F   T H E

U N I T E D   S T A T E S   O F   A M E R I C A.

T H E  Honourable Continental Congress having re-considered the resolution, of the 16th of September last, for raising eighty eight battalions to serve during the present War with Great-Britain; and being of opinion that the readiness of the inhabitants of the States, to enter into the service for limited times, in defence of their invaluable privileges, on all former occasions, gives good ground to hope that the same zeal for the public good, will appear in future, when necessity calls for their assistance, and the uncertain length of time, which forces raised during the continuance of the War may be compelled to serve, may prevent many from enlisting, who would otherwise readily manifest their attachment to the common Cause by engaging for a limited time; have therefore, on the 7th instant resoved to admit into their service, non-commissioned officers and soldiers for the space of Three Years.
    The encouragement you are to offer is so great, as will, it is hoped, give you a choice of men and ensure your success, (to wit) a bounty of Ten Dollars in money to every non-commissioned officer and soldier already enlisted for three years, and who has received the Continental Bounty of Twenty Dollars, and also to each, a Suit of Cloths yearly, to cosist for the present year of
Two linnen Hunting-Shirts,
Two pair of Hose,
Two pair of Overhalls,
A leathern or woolen Waiscoat with sleeves.
One pair of Breeches,
One Hat or leathern Cap, and
Two pair of Shoes.
    Amounting in the whole to the value of Twenty Dollars more.
    But each non-commissioned officer or soldier, who shall procure those articles for himself, and produce to the Paymaster of the regiment, a certificate thereof, from the Captain of the company to which he shall belong, shall be entitled to receive the Twenty Dollars in money; besides which every non-commissioned officer and soldier, who shall enlist during the War, is to receive at the end of the War One Hundred Acres of Land, as a further encouragement. 
    2dly, You are to be careful to enlist none but healthy able-bodied Men, who shall engage to serve in the army of the United States of America, during the present War, of for the term of Three Years, unless sooner discharged by Congress.
    3dly, You are required to provide two distinct enlisting roles, one to be subscribed by such who shall enlist during the continuance of the War, and the other by such as shall enlist for three years if their services shall so long be required.
    4thly, You shall take the age, size, colour of hair and eyes, and natural or accidental mark of every Recruit, with an account of the place of his birth and occupation.
    5thly, You shall embrace all opportunities to have the Recruits drilled and disciplined, and for that purpose you shall dispatch them without delay, to such station or place of rendezvous, as shall be appointed for that purpose.
    6thly, To every Recruit at the time of enlistment, you shall administer the Oath prescribed by the Articles of War, published by the Continental Congress.
    7thly, You shall appoint four active and capable recruiting Serjeants to assist you, in this Service.
    8thly, If you shall re-enlist for the War or for three Years, any non-commisioned officer or soldier, who is at present in actual service for a shorter time, you are to give in his name and description to the Captain, to whose company he shall then belong, who is to take particular charge of him, that he is to be delivered over to his proper officer at the end of the[ ]service, for which he may so be re-engaged or sooner if required.
    9thly, You are to have your men mustered by the Commissary of Musters, the first opportunity after enlistment, in order that they may receive their full bounty, Five Dollars of which only, you shall pay to each Recruit, as an encouragement, at the time of enlistment.
    10thly, For this pupose you shall receive from the Treasury of the S[t]ate of New-York, the necessary sums, of the expenditure of which you shall keep a regular account and transmit it to the Treasurer at Fish Kill. 

   After the Articles of [W]ar are read to the non-commissioned officer or soldier, enlisted by the enlisting officer, or the commanding officer of the troop or company, the following oath (or Affirmation, if the Recruit is conscientiously scrupulous) shall be: administered to him before the next Justice of the Peace, or Chief Magistrate of any city, or town corporate, not being an officer of the army; or where recourse cannot be had to a magistrate, before the Judge Advocate.
    "I swear or affirm (as the case may be) to be true to the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, and to serve them honestly and faithfully against all their enemies or opposers whatsoever; and to observe and obey the Orders of the Continental Congress and the Orders of the General, and officers set over me by them."



[Holograph subscriptions]
Fish Kill Nov. 25. 1776. By order. 
Robert Yates Chairman of the Committee 
of  [arrangmt:] in the State of 
New York.

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