George Washington Papers

From George Washington to William Fleming, 28 October 1755

To William Fleming

[Winchester, 28 October 1755]

To Ensign Fleming, of the Virginia Regiment.

You are hereby ordered to repair to Captain Hogg’s Company at Fort Dinwiddie, with eight good men: as that Company is without a Surgeon, if you will do that duty, an allowance will be made you for it. You are to provide medicines, &c. upon the best terms you can. This Order I expect will be immediately complied with; and that no Delays be offered. You are to account with Captain Bell for your recruiting money, before you leave him. If you should arrive at Augusta Court-House before Sergeant Wilper and his Party,1 you are to halt there until he joins, in order to escort the Ammunition, &c. for the Fort; where you will receive Clothes and Arms for the Men.


William Fleming (1727–1795), a Scot who may have served as a surgeon’s mate in the British navy before coming to Virginia in the early 1750s, was named by GW among the ensigns in the newly formed Virginia Regiment on 3 Sept. 1755. He served as an officer and surgeon in the regiment until it was disbanded, rising to the rank of lieutenant in Captain Hog’s company in 1757. After the war he practiced medicine in Staunton for a few years and then settled in Botetourt County where he became one of the leading citizens of western Virginia.

1John David Wilper (Woelpper), with several men he had recruited, joined Peter Hog’s company at Fort Dinwiddie. In June 1757 GW ordered Sergeant Wilper to conduct a party of Cherokee Indians from Winchester to North Carolina, and the next summer and fall Wilper was in command of the little garrison at Pearsal’s. He joined GW’s expedition against the French in 1754, just after the engagement at Fort Necessity. Although already about 46 years old at this time, Wilper went on to serve as a captain in the Revolution.

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