Genl: Danl: Morgan to Governor of Va.
February 10, 1782
I enclose you a letter (not found) from John Clapool of Hampshire County to me, desiring me to solicit your Excellency's clemency and forgiveness for offences which your excellency no doubt have been informed of. He was to have headed that body of Tories along the Fronteers of this State, who had conspired and assembled to oppose the Laws, and who appeared to me at that time to be a dangerous body, as the enemy was then penetrating the country - on my raising a body of men and going against them he gave himself up to the laws of his country - after reading his letter to me, your Excellency will better judge of contrition. I think him truly penitent. I never saw the man, but have inform myself of his former character as well as of his conduct since his resignation to the Laws of his Country, which in both cases have been uniform and good. And altho' he is condemn'd in his County for a further trial, his crimes are only similar to those men in Augusta county who opposed the laws and prevented the draught, except his being a leading man in the Section.
I can truly say this is the first time I ever spoke in favour of a Tory, or ever wished their lives spared them - but Humanity as well as policy urges me to say something in favour of Clapool, and wish he may obtain forgiveness. In the first place he has a wife and fourteen children chiefly small, and dependent on him for subsistence. In the next place I think he may be depended on, and sure to prevent another revolt, which the people of that place for many years will incline to, as they are ignorant of their duty, fond of changes and withal encouraged & favoured by the situation of the place They live in, which is composed of deep valies and inaccessible mountains, which serves to favour their escape when pursued. in the third place his being forgiven would be a means of bringing in numbers of our Lyers, who are afraid to come, for fear of being punished - numbers of deserters from the Army with them.
I have the Honor to be
your obt. & hbl Servt
Claypool's Rebellion: Primary Documents