Tuesday, July 31, 2012

July 26: William Sutton

   On 26 July 1776, William Sutton, jailed on charges he denounced the Declaration of Independence and aided British forces, petitioned the Convention of the Representatives of the State of New York.  Pleaded that incarcerated aggravated his poor health, Sutton wrote that he would not “endeavour to influence any person or persons to aid the Ministerial or discourage the American arms.” 
   The records of the New York Convention for 26 July indicate that 
William Sutton sent in a Petition, setting forth his ill state of health, and requesting a release from confinement in Prison.”  The Convention Ordered, That Doctor Graham be requested to visit him, and report his state of health to this Convention in the afternoon.”
   The same day
Dr. Jonathan Augustus Graham, M.D. wrote to Brigadier-General Woodhull, “According to the desire of the honourable Convention, I have duly examined with respect to the indisposition of Mr. William Sutton.  I find that he labours under a violent harassing cough, phthisick, and disorder of the his lungs, attended with universal decay; for the cure of which, even to preserve him from imminent danger of a supervening consumption, I should judge it necessary that he have a free air, proper diet and exercise, which, in the rpesent situation he is now in, cannot be exhibited.”
   On 27 July, the New York Convention released with an admonition William Sutton's son, John Sutton, 
In pity to your youth and in hopes of your amendment....

  The New York Convention voted on 27 July to send William Sutton to the Committee of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for confinement.  On 8 August 1776, the Pennsylvania Council of Safety committed William Sutton to the care of Robert Jewell, Keeper of the State Prison. The Pennsylvania Council of Safety granted parole to one William Sutton on 11 September 1776.
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