Alexander Hamilton Papers

Summary of George Washington’s Letter to Samuel Huntington, [11 October 1780]

Summary of George Washington’s Letter
to Samuel Huntington1

[Passaic Falls, New Jersey, October 11, 1780]

Contents of Letter to Congress

Approves the reduction to 50 regiments. Proposes as the basis of the reduction a half pay establishment for life, or making the half pay for seven years whole pay, to be paid one half in a year after the conclusion of peace, the other half in two years after that.

Regiments to consist of one Colonel where the old colonels are continued or

one Lt Col Commandant

two Majors

Nine Captains

22 subalterns

1 surgeon

1 Mate

1 serjeant Major

1 Qr. Mr. serjeant

45 serjeants

1 Drum Major

1 fife Major

10 drums

10 fifes

612 rank and file

One Capt and 2 subalterns to do the duty of each company, one subaltern as Pay Master one as Qr. Master one as Adjutant one as recruiting officer to reside in the state; these to rank and rise with the others; at present the subalterns will be mostly lieutenants because we have few ensigns; hereafter there will be one Lieutenant & one ensign per Company, and the four supernumeraries will be lieutenants; one field officer to superintend the recruiting in each state that furnishes more than two regiments & a Capt where they do not.

Four regiments of cavalry or rather Legionary corps, each consisting of

4 troops of mounted dragoons 60 each 240
4 ditto—dismounted do 60 do 240

Besides these two partizan corps one by Lee,2 one by Armand,3 each consisting of

3 troops of mounted dragoons—50 each 150
3 do—dismounted— do— 150

Officers & non Commissioned officers of the cavalry as heretofore.

Artillery to have four regiments, 10 Companies per Regiment. Officers & non Commissioned Officers as heretofore.

Presses Congress to make no alternative in their requisitions as to the time of service; but to call upon the states to complete their quotas by inlistment draft or assessment as may be found necessary.

Presses them also to take the incorporation upon themselves and not leave it to the states.

Presses to have the requisitions for men first determined and sent on.

Sends a list of resignations which of those registered with us amounts to more than an hundred & fifty since last January besides which are a great number not properly reported. This in the army in this quarter.

AD, photostat, George Washington Papers, Library of Congress.

1This is a summary of the letter which Washington wrote to the President of Congress on October 11, 1780. Washington’s letter, which is in the George Washington Papers, Library of Congress, is calendared below.

2Major Henry Lee.

3Colonel Charles Armand.

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