Philadelphia Ss.


On the eighteenth day of Feb[ruar]y 1778 Personally appeared before the Subscriber, Thomas Wileman of the 17th Dragoons, who being duly sworn on the Holy Evangelists &c doth depose and say that on or about the 25th day of December last he was taken Prisoner by the Rebels near Darby and Stript [sic,(stripped)] of his Cloaths [sic], Watch, Money, and Shoes, and another Dragoon of the same Regiment taken at the Same time was treated in the same Manner by four Captains, two of whose Names this Desponent remembers to be Mitchelson and Davis of the Jersey Troops.  That in this naked Condition he was inarched to Lord Stirlings Quarters, to whom after having been examined by him, he the Deponent made Complaint of the Usage he had received, but was answer[e]d by him "That was a Maxim taken from the British Troops" who treat the Con­tinental Soldiers in that Manner when Prisoners with them.  That Lord Stirling being displeased with his Reply to that charge ordered him immediately to the Provost.  That eight days after he was Sent to General Washington's Quarters at the Valley Forge, before whom he was again examined, that while in confinement at that Place this Deponent and Several other British Prisoners were four days without any Pro­visions and complaining to the Captain of the Guard of such Treatment, he charged it to the Neglect of the Provost Martial and on the fifth day they received Provisions, that they were sent from thence to Lancaster, where they were grossly insulted by the Inhabitants; That when in Goal, the Bread served out to them was so very bad that it occasioned a continual Drought, and such an Inflamation in the Mouth, that the Skin came partly off.  That during this Deponents Stay in the Goal, he Saw a Rebel paper printed at York dated, the 2d or 3d Instant which gave an Account of a Chimney's taking Fire by reason of its being foul in the Provost at Frederick Town, but a Suspicion arising, that it had been done by the British Prisoners there, the Rebel Soldiers with Bayonets Killed eight and wounded eighteen of them.  That this Matter was confirmed to this Deponent, by a Prisoner who had been taken by the Rebels and transmitted from thence to Lancaster Goal and further this Deponent sayeth not



Thomas Wileman

Sworn before me the Day

and year above mentioned

/Signed/ John Potts, Mag[istrate] Police


[Source: Mircofilm of the David Library, British Headquarters Papers 948, 1-4.]

[As transcribed by Gilbert V. Riddle.]