The Proceedings of the Convention of Delegates for the Counties and Corporations in the Colony of Virginia, Held at Richmond Town, in the County of Henrico, on Monday the 17th of July, 1775

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The Proceedings of the Convention of Delegates

Title page from The Proceedings of the Convention of Delegates, George Wythe Collection, Wolf Law Library, College of William & Mary.

Author Third Virginia Convention
Editor {{{editor}}}
Translator {{{trans}}}
Published Williamsburg: Printed by Alexander Purdie
Date 1775
Edition First
Language English
Volumes {{{set}}} volume set
Pages 59
Desc. 4to (23 cm.)
Location Shelf E-3
  [[Shelf {{{shelf2}}}]]

This text records the proceedings of the Third Virginia Convention, which convened at St. John's Church in Richmond on July 17, 1775 after Lord Dunmore, Governor of the Virginia colony fled the capital. The Convention ended August 26, 1775. Delegates elected Peyton Randolph, President, and John Tazewell, Clerk.[1] Prior to the Third Convention, Governor Dunmore ordered the removal of Virginia's gunpowder stores to a warship, threatened to free Virginia's slaves, and warned that he would burn Williamsburg. Violence loomed, and Dunmore took shelter on the Fowey, another warship, on June 8, 1775.[2]

After Patrick Henry's impassioned "Give me Liberty, or give me Death!" speech at the Second Virginia Convention in March 1775, the attendees at the Third Convention were more fully convinced of the impending threats against Virginia and the budding nation. This Convention established a Committee of Safety, to which Edmund Pendleton and George Mason were elected, so the colonists would be prepared to defend themselves. It provided for volunteer regimens in each Virginia county and a fixed system to maintain the militia, arms, and ammunition. Notably, the Convention also appointed Patrick Henry colonel and elected Thomas Jefferson and George Wythe as representatives to the General Convention for one year.[3]

Inscription: Mr. Wythe [?], title page.

Evidence for Inclusion in Wythe's Library

Wythe definitely owned this title—a copy owned by the Earl Gregg Swem Library at the College of William & Mary is inscribed "Mr Wythe" on the title page. Two of the Wythe Collection sources (Brown's Bibliography[4] and George Wythe's Library[5] on LibraryThing) include this title. The Wolf Law Library arranged a permanent loan from the Swem Library of George Wythe's personal copy.

Description of the Wolf Law Library's copy

Rebound with cloth spine and paper boards. Housed in a blue archival box. The title page is inscribed "Mr. Wythe"(?), but not in Wythe's hand. Manuscript notes in Wythe's handwriting, however, appear on page 4 (inserting "^ and Henry Pendleton"), and on page 24 (exchanging "said ordinance" for "state of the colony"), with brackets and marginalia on a few other pages (possibly not Wythe's).

Images of the library's copy of this book are available on Flickr. View the record for this book in William & Mary's online catalog.

Full text

See also


  1. Jacob Neff Brenaman, A History of Virginia Conventions (Richmond, VA: J.L. Hill Printing Co., 1902), 21.
  2. "WPA Guide to Virginia: Virginia History" in Virginia: A Guide to the Old Dominion (Richmond: Virginia State Library and Archives, in cooperation with the Virginia Center for the Book, 1992), accessed November 7, 2013.
  3. Brenaman, A History of Virginia Conventions, 21-26.
  4. Bennie Brown, "The Library of George Wythe of Williamsburg and Richmond," (unpublished manuscript, May, 2012) Microsoft Word file. Earlier edition available at:
  5. LibraryThing, s.v. "Member: George Wythe," accessed on June 28, 2013.