Amazing, isn't it? That would be like today in Iraq or Gaza or Sudan, somebody sending a message to their enemy saying in effect, "sorry we had to destroy your spy's base, but we didn't harm the spy or his family or things, and we'll promise safe passage for you to come in and retrieve him". Can you imagine?
De Veneris, 10 HO, A.M.A copy of the letter from Governor Tryon, to the Major of this city dated the 19th instant, was read. He thereby informs that the commanders of the King's ships, on this station, had thought it necessary to burn the pilot house near the light house. That proper care has been taken of Adam Dobbs and his family and effects, and that if a sloop is sent down to receive Dobbs, his servants and effects, she will be permitted to return safe.
April 26th 1776
(Of course, it wasn't entirely genteel. The same Governor was implicated in a plot to kidnap George Washington.)