A PROVINCIAL CONGRESS
The convention having considered this advice and matured their plan, sent to the several towns a circular containing the plan, and then adjourned sine die, November 16.
According to this plan, the number of representatives was to be considerably less than that of delegates in the convention. Hampton, having between one and two hundred families, was entitled to only one representative, and never since has a larger number been allowed.
The towns generally responded to the call thus made by the convention, and appointed delegates, or representatives to a provincial congress, giving them such powers as were deemed necessary to accomplish the objects proposed. Capt. Josiah Moulton was chosen for Hampton and held the office, by annual election, six years.
About this time, the Committee of Safety received a letter sent by express from General Sullivan, informing them of the withdrawal of the Connecticut troops from the lines at Cambridge, and asking them to send troops from New Hampshire to supply their places. The committee held a special meeting at Portsmouth, December 2, 1775, to act upon the request. They gave orders to sixteen "gentlemen, each to enlist a company of sixty-one able bodied men, including 3 sergeants & 3 corporals, well provided with arms & blankets, to serve in th Continental Army, under the command of General Washington, until the 15th Jany next unless sooner discharged, & as soon as enlisted to march them immediately to join General Sullivan's Brigade." Blank orders were also entrusted to several judicious persons, to put into the hands of men whom they considered suitable for raising other companies. The whole number of companies mustered into the service under this call, was thirty-one. One of the sixteen men, to whom these orders were given, was Capt. Henry Elkins, of Hampton, and he appears to have acted promptly, for his company was styled the "First Company."
When the new form of government went into operation, Hon. Meshech Weare, having been chosen as one of the council, was elected president of that body. He was soon after appointed chief justice of the Superior Court of Judicature, "thus being invested at the same time with the highest offices, legislative, executive and judicial. No stronger testimony could be given, of the confidence reposed in his integrity and ability."
About the same time Josiah Moulton, Esq., was appointed one of the justices of the Inferior Court of Common Pleas for Rockingham county.
On the 11th of March, the House of Representatives voted, "to raise three companies of one hundred men each, including officers, out of each of the following regiments, viz.: Portsmouth, Dover & Hampton, to be on the lines at Portsmouth immediately with arms & ammunition complete, and there to continue till further orders; to be paid from the time of marching, the same as the Provincials of the preceding year were paid."