War Office 26th January 1776
Major General Preston of the 17th Regiment of Light Dragoons having represented to me that in April last, upon the arrival of the Transports at Corke which were destined to carry his Regiment to No[rth] America, Lieut[enant] Col[one]l Birch / the Commanding Officer / inspected every Ship allotted for that purpose, and was much surprised to find every one of them so very full of Casks and Forage, that he apprehended the Men could not get to the Ends of the Ships to feed the Horses, of which he complained to Maj[o]r Gen[era]l Gisbome [sic] and also to Lieut[enant] Evans of the Navy who had charge of all the Ships, but it was then too late to be rectified as the Masters of the Ships assured them that they carried nothing more than what was allowed by the Admiralty for the use of the Troops. But upon the Troops being disembarked at Boston Colonel Birch reported to General Preston that part of the lower tire of Casks were filled with porter which the Masters of the Ships sold at Boston, which might have been the Cause of the loss of the Horses, had they been detained longer at Sea; I have the honor to submit the same to your Lordship, that proper measures may be taken to prevent the like practice on any future Occasion.
I have the honor to be
My Lord &c
Lord George Germain
[Source: W.O. 4/95, Page 230, 460. Micro film Collection, The David Library of the American Revolution.]