Research

New York State Provincial Congress Military Returns

Held by the New York State Archives


Overview of the Records

Repository:

New York State Archives

New York State Education Department

Cultural Education Center

Albany, NY 12230

Summary:
These returns provide names and commission dates of militia officers elected by local committees, as well as numbers of troops in militia regiments. Also included are lists of enlisted men, lists of prisoners, minutes of the Provincial Congress concerning election returns, records of arms and ammunition on hand, and incoming correspondence of the Committee of Safety regarding orders carried out. Records are fragile due to burn damage.
Creator:
Title:
Quantity:
0.2 cubic feet; Microfilm 1 roll; 35mm.
Inclusive Dates:
1775-1780
Series Number:
A1815

Scope and Content Note

This series consists mostly of election returns for military officers and reports on the strength of military units. The Provincial Congress, acting as an extralegal administrator of the internal affairs of the colony, requested local committees to choose local militia officers and to report the results back to the Congress.

The records exist in several forms: charts providing the name of the commanding officer (colonel) of a specified regiment, the captain of each company in the regiment, number of officers by rank and of troops in each captain's company, and the total number in the regiment; lists of officers, sometimes with dates commissioned; extracts or copies of minutes of local committee meetings at which officers were chosen; and letters to the Provincial Congress from local committees certifying that specified officers had been elected.

The series contains other records concerning the military including: lists of enlisted men; lists of prisoners; minutes of the Provincial Congress concerning election returns; records of arms and ammunition on hand; and incoming correspondence of the Committee of Safety, sometimes from local committees, regarding orders carried out and often relating to officers or enlisted men.

Use of Records

Access Restrictions

Records are fragile due to burn damage. Use is restricted. Microfilm is first use copy.

Alternate Formats Available

Microform is available at the New York State Archives through interlibrary loan.

Selected documents from the series were published in Calendar of Historical Manuscripts Relating to the War of the Revolution in the Office of Secretary of State (Albany, 1868).

Related Information

Other finding aids

Rough alphabetical name and subject indexes to part of series (old volumes 26 and 27).

Custodial History

The records were at one time bound by the Secretary of State's office as Volumes 26-29 of a series titled "Papers Laid Before the Provincial Congress." The records suffered burn damage in the State Capitol fire of 1911; Volume 28 was destroyed in the fire.

Access Terms

Corporate Name(s):
Geographic Name(s):
Subject(s):
Function(s):