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course with this deluded and obstinate person, as they will answer the contrary at their peril.

By order: BENJAMIN SANDS, Chairman.


Fort Montgomery, March 27, 1776.

GENTLEMEN: Enclosed I send muster-rolls of part of Captain Bittings’s and Swartwout’s Companies, taken at their particular request, on being ordered to this post. The Captains not choosing to march their men till they were mustered, a difficulty arose, as the Mustermaster (Colonel Swartwout) was at New-York. To give the gentlemen satisfaction, as far as I was able, I took the enclosed muster-rolls from necessity, as the only expedient that then presented. Only parts of companies were ordered down-thinking it better to have them down in detached parties, as fast as they could be inlisted, than to have many idle till the companies were completed. Captain Billings, who carries this, will inform you of the state of things at this post, the soldiery having scarcely one camp necessary but what we have lent them.

I am, gentlemen, with much respect, your very humble servant,


To the Chairman of the Committee of Safety.


Albany, Monday, March 27, 1776.

MY DEAR LORD: The expense of transporting the prisoners and their baggage is so exceedingly high, that I have ventured to send such as have families down Hudson’s River, on their way to New-Brunswick. Lieutenant Bheeker will show your Lordship his orders, and receive yours for his conduct on his arrival at New-York.

A Captain Dundee has behaved in a very cavalier manner, and refused giving his parole. I shall lodge him in Kingston Jail. Some others also hesitated to do it, but afterwards applied for leave; but as I had understood that they conceived they might, without censure, break parole given to people whom they consider as Rebels, I told them, in plain terms, that if any one attempted to escape who was under that honorary engagement, and I could retake him, I would punish the injury done to society by immediately hanging the faithless wretch.

I am, my dear Lord, your Lordship’s most humble servant,


To the Right Honourable the Earl of Stirling.


Albany, March 27, 1776.

SIR: Your favour of the 2lst I had the honour to receive yesterday by Mr. Bennett. General Washington’s success, which I learned with the most feeling satisfaction, whilst it reflects so much honour on him and the troops under his command, I think cannot fail of the most salutary consequences. It will give Europe a just idea of our martial abilities, and they will respect a people who are determined to enjoy their liberties, and so capable of defending them. Our Indian allies, too, will be confirmed in their peaceable disposition towards us; and such of them as are wavering will become steady. But yet I have no hopes the Ministry will recede from their diabolical plan. They seem to be seized with an infatuation, that leads them on to the ruin of Old England, which, I think, must inevitably happen whenever we are driven to the necessity of declaring ourselves an Independent State.

I shall order old gun-barrels and locks, at any of the posts above, to be sent down here and forwarded to Connecticut. We shall certainly not do justice to those unhappy men who have fallen into the hands of our brutal enemy, and are treated without any respect to the laws of humanity and decorum, if we do not retaliate. A Captain Dundee, who is lately arrived prisoner from Canada, behaved in a very outré; manner, and refused giving his parole. I have ordered him into close confinement, and shall send him to Ulster County Jail; and have declared to the others, that if any attempted to escape who had given their parole, I would hang them; which I am fully resolved to do, and thereby resent the injuries which such wretches would do to mankind in general.

That Heaven may continue to smile propitiously on our honest endeavpurs; that it may be pleased to inspire us with a grateful sense of its mercies; that it may give us so to use its blessings as that we may look up with a confident hope for the continuance of the Divine favour on us and our posterity, is my sincere prayer.

I am, most truly and sincerely, with great regard, your Honour’s most obedient servant,


To the Honourable Jonathan Trumbull, Esq.


Albany, March 27, 1776.

I thank you, my dear General, for your favour of the 19th instant, which I had the honour to receive yesterday. I most sincerely congratulate you on the success of your operations. Forcing a formidable and well appointed Army, commanded by Generals of reputation, and secured with the best of works to seek elbow-room, malgréeux, by a precipitate retreat, whilst it reflects the highest honour on you, cannot fail of the most salutary effects with the Powers of Europe, out of which I except devoted England, whoso Prince and Ministry seem unalterably bent on the destruction of their country and themselves.

Enclose you a letter from General Arnold, which I opened by mistake, and read to within a few lines of its conclusion, before I discovered my error. I hope you will pardon my carelessness, for I assure you it was owing to nothing else.

The north end of Lake Champlain is open, and I hope a few warm days will open the remainder of that, and also Lake George. We have here now about six hundred men, who will move as soon as there is a prospect of conveying them across the lakes.

The cannon from New-York are arrived, and are on their way to Fort George. I fear they will not reach it in less than ten days from this, if so soon, as I cannot procure cattle sufficient to move them at once from Half-Moon, (to which place they are gone by water,) owing to the incredible scarcity of forage.

On the 22d instant, one hundred new batteaus were finished at Fort George, as far as they can be without pitch and oakum, which is not yet arrived from New-York. Thirty-five, however, are completely finished. I am of opinion that a much greater number are necessary to pour troops into Canada, in case it should be found necessary; but Congress have stinted me to the number I have built.

The powder (only eight tons) arrived here last week, and will be sent on with the first troops.

Congress have ordered me to remain here until further orders; so that I shall not have the pleasure of saluting you on your arrival at New-York, although I may soon after, if it be agreeable to your Excellency.

The officers, (prisoners,) that came a few days ago from Canada, refused to give their parole; and one of them, a Captain Dundee, was very cavalier with me. I have ordered him into close custody. The others have since given their parole; but as some of them had dropped expressions, as if they should not consider a breach of it criminal, I convened them all, and informed them that if any of them attempted an escape after having given their parole, and I could lay hands on them, I should resent the injury done to mankind in general by hanging such faithless wretches.

The Cayugas, (one of the Six Nations,) have expressed much resentment that Colonel Johnson’s war belt was delivered up to us. Altercation ran very high between them and the Oneida Nation. Your success will, I hope, quiet the minds of all, and restore tranquillity amongst them. I shall immediately transmit an account of it to the whole of the Six Nations.

General Wooster is distressed beyond conception for hard money; and whatever your Excellency can send will be most heartily welcome.

May Heaven guard and guide your steps, and may your every future movement be fraught with happiness and honour, is the sincere wish of, dear General, your Excellency’s most obedient and most humble servant,


To His Excellency General Washington.

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