Alexander Hamilton Papers

To Alexander Hamilton from James McHenry, 16 October 1798

From James McHenry


Trenton 16 Octbr. 1798

My dear Hamilton.

You will see by the enclosed,1 the steps I have taken, and the information and the aid which I expect to derive from the Major Generals in case it is approved. I know not how all this is to end, and feel perfectly tired of the uncertainty in which so many important measures are kept fettered and involved.

I hope you will approve of this exposition, and the propriety of my fortifying or correcting my own opinions by those of the Generals.

Yours ever & affectionately

James McHenry

ADfS, James McHenry Papers, Library of Congress.

1On October 16, 1798, McHenry wrote in part to John Adams: “… My design is, to derive from the knowledge the Generals may have, of the several characters, who have applied for military appointments, and others disposed to enter in the Army effectual and necessary aid, in the selection and application of the most suitable to the different grades; and to prepare in conjunction with them a list for your final determination: and also, to avail myself of their knowledge and experience in digesting a report, to be submitted for your approbation relative to the measures necessary to be pursued, to give efficacy and ensure success to the recruiting Service—to the distribution of the military force of the United States; the most certain, regular and economical mode of provisioning the recruits and the troops in the field —the quantity and kinds of artillery, military stores and other articles necessary to be procured in addition to what we already have in our Magazines and Arsenals and the proper places for occasional and permanent deposits for the same. I also purpose to assign to the two Major Generals Hamilton and Knox such branches of the military Service as were suggested in my letter of the 4th Aug ultimo” (copy, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress).

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