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Thursday, July 26, 2007

July 26. 1778
Two days ago we awoke to find the Articles of Conduct by which we govern ourselves and which had been posted for all to observe, had been defaced by several fellows who had been causing much trouble the prior day. Three days ago, when told to behave themselves they threatened to ruin the Articles. For punishment they were each tied to a post and cold water poured over them for a half hour. One of the fellows complained to the agent but for his troubles he was ordered to be put into irons and isolated from us in the itchy prison.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

July 22. 1778
Two days ago it was storming for the first time in two months. Two prisoners used this opportunity to attempt to make their escape through a hole in the back of the Long Prison but when they emerged outside the wall they were quickly discovered by a sentry and returned to the prison. While the guards were in the Long Prison the alarm was raised for a fire in the chimbley of the guard house. In the confusion some of the guards thought the entire prison was on fire and this caused much uproar. More guards came into the Long Prison and found several men fully dressed and the guards supposing this was a sign that they were also ready to make their escape committed them to the Black Hole.

Yesterday Captains Lee, Ross, Kirk and Shoemaker climbed over their wall into the Frenchmen’s yard. Kirk and Shoemaker were soon discovered by a sentry and sent to the Black Hole. Lee and Ross were discovered in the hospital broiling beefsteaks and they too were committed to the Black Hole.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

July 19. 1778
Several days past we drew up articles of conduct by which to rule ourselves. This is in response to the rough behavior of several of those men who continually use their allowance to immediately become disguised with beer purchased at the gate. They then cause an uproar in the prison by constantly picking fights. Our articles prohibit anyone from blackguarding an officer or soldier, gambling with cards or coppers, fighting or getting disguised with liquor, under penalty of punishment. Since these regulations have been put in place and since the Rev. Mr. Heath has brought us several books to employ our minds the prison is in a more calm state.

Monday, July 16, 2007

July 16. 1778
Yesterday several of our boys generated some excitement when they were found to be missing. This did not last long as they were soon found hiding in the Frenchmen’s yard.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

July 10. 1778
Today, Joseph Burnham decided to take the doctor’s offer and had his thigh removed after suffering so long with the white swelling in his knee.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

July 8. 1778
On July 4th we made great sport of William Cowdry, our keeper. We formed ourselves into 13 regiments representing the 13 United States with each regiment giving a rousing cheer to celebrate the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Cowdry, seeing Independence and Liberty or Death written on our cockades, was convinced we were ready to make a run at the gate in full force and responded by doubling the guards at the gate. We, seeing this, took great delight in his misunderstanding with many jokes made and laughing for the rest of the evening.

Today the Reverend Mr. Heath visited us bringing with him several books which he has given to us for our education and amusement. These books included A Bible, Hervey's Meditations, in 2 vols., Mrs. Rowe's Devout Exercises, Watts's Lyric Poems, Milton's Paradise Lost, The British Youth's Instructor, The Letter Writer Instructed, A Guide for the Young, Burkitt's Help and Guide to Christian Families and Shower's Reflections on Time and Eternity."

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

July 3. 1778
Several of our number are busily employed at making cockades for all of us to wear tomorrow in celebration of the second anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

July 1. 1778
Yesterday evening I, along with five others, attempted to make our escape through a window in this prison into the yard and then over the wall. As we started to scale the wall a sentry raised the alarm. We were able to make our way back to the Long Prison and into the window before the guards could come in and catch us. So, for now we avoid the pleasures of being put up in the Black Hole.