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Wednesday, July 05, 2006

July 5. 1777
Unexpected but very welcome guests came to Mill Prison today. I was visited by William Clark and Benjamin Hodgson both of Portsmouth and good friends of my father. I have known them since I was a young boy running about the shipyard. They were forced into service of the British Navy as they were in England at the outbreak of the war and they are now both sailing masters of transport ships that put in here yesterday and are now windbound. Having learned of our condition and having some time they came on shore. To my great comfort they have promised to get word of my condition to my Rebecca when they return to America. They also inquired after Guppy Studley, another old Portsmouth acquaintance, and found that he was with the small pox in the prison hospital.

Before they departed they gave those of us they know from Portsmouth some money for relief. To me, they gave two guineas. One for me and one for Guppy. Their kindness is very welcome indeed as our regular daily rations are not nearly enough to sustain us, being hardly enough for a single meal.

Their fleet now laying in the Sound sailed from London three weeks past and consists of 32 merchant vessels, and four men o’ war convoys -two two-deckers, a frigate and a sloop o’ war. Mr. Hodgson says they carry 4000 troops bound for Canada.

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