Petition of Peter Wilson and Note Attached of John Outwater
New Barbadoes, September 8, 1781
May it please your Excellency
The perilous Situation of the frontiers of this County has induced me to make this Application to your Excellency at the Request of the Inhabitants, that a part of the Militia of the State should be called out to the Assistance of the twelve Months Men stationed here for the defence of the County. This Measure has become the more necessary as the few Men who were raised for a Year are reduced in Number by Enlistments into the Continental Army. One hundred & twenty Men were designed for the Protection of this Frontier, not above one fourth Part of which are now on duty here, while Closter which is also very much exposed, is entirely open to the Depredations of the Refugees, who are indefatigable in making nocturnal Expeditions for Horses, Cattle, & Prisoners.(1) On the 9th. of August they carried off fourteen Prisoners & a very considerable Number of Cattle & Horses-the greater Part of the Stock they were obliged to quit, but the Prisoners were safely lodged in the Sugar House, and on the 30th. ult. they made another Attempt upon this Quarter but were forced to leave all the Cattle & Horses they had taken, & in Spite of the Fire of their Gun-Boat, & Grape Shot to make a precipitate Retreat with the Loss of three men killed, & 6 or 7 wounded two of whom, one of them the Capt. of the Gun Boat, are since dead, some of the Others dangerously wounded, and one taken prisoner. Capt. Outwater who commanded the Year'.s Men & Militia of the Vicinity who turned out On the Instant, had one man wounded thro' the Thigh, & two others slightly scratched. A small party of them succeeded better at Closter last Wednesday night the 4th. Instant having carried off 10 head of Cattle & 4 Horses, & taken five white Men & a Negro prisoners. One Cole,(2) of the Militia of that Neighbourhood, who had deserted to the Enemy a few days before was their Conductor.
The Militia of this County have done so great a Surplus of Military Duty that I could wish, if the Governor's Ideas coincide with mine, to have one Class from one of the Regiments of the County of Somerset, & one Class from this County called to our assistance, to be Stationed at this Place & at Closter. I am with the greatest Respect your Excellency's very humble Servant
Bergen County, September 10, 1781
I am Parsaonelly Acquainted With the General Desire of the Publick, In Regard to An Augmentation of the Guard, On this frontier, Your Excelency I Am Convinced, Wants No Information, In Regard to the Situation of this County from Your Parshaonel knowledge of the Strength of the De[ . . . ] under my Command, & Capt. Demarests (3) at the Bridges, You take the mater In Your Serius Consideration & Grant the Above Request. I Am With the Gratest Respect Your Excellency's most Obedient & Very Humble Servt.
From the Pension application of Henry Denny, where Captain Outwater testified Denny served under him.