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    (American Revolution: The Fall of Philadelphia) John Turner, Philadelphia merchant, Autograph Letter Signed, "Jno Turner", one page, 8" x 13", Philadelphia, September 8, 1777 to Capt. William Smith of the Philadelphia Militia at Brandywine Mills making arrangements should the British Army move on Philadelphia. An obviously worried Turner writes: "I think it Prudent to know what you mean to do in case the famous City of Philda. Cannot be Saved, and you Cannot be able to Leave your duty (God Forbid it Should happen [sic]) but at the same time it is Acting The Part of a good Gen[t]l[eman] to be prepared for a Retreat your advice in Case your absent will not a Little Contribute to make Easy..." He adds extra details including a note that "...Carson, Levand, Holingsworth Lawrence &c are p[ai]d and about Twelve hundred Dollars in Bank - and goods wholesale to be Bought tomorrow I will purchase as many woolen Hose in market as I can... a Great Q[an]t[it]y of goods is pack'd Ready for flight by a number in Town - J. T." Turner's pessimism was not without foundation; the next day the Americans would battle the British Army under at Brandywine Creek and would be forced to withdraw toward Philadelphia on September 11. The Continental Congress would flee to Lancaster, Pennsylvania on September 19. The British Army, under command of William Howe, would triumphantly march into Philadelphia on September 26, 1777, and they occupied the city until the following Spring. Washington and the Continental Army would wait them out that winter at Valley Forge. A fantastic letter vividly illustrating the panic that reigned in the wake of the British advance on the city. Light folds a few marginal tears, light toning, else very good condition. Letters with such dramatic content seldom come on the market; an important missive. From the Henry E. Luhrs Collection. Accompanied by LOA from PSA/DNA.

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    Auction Dates
    February, 2006
    20th-21st Monday-Tuesday
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