George Washington Papers

To George Washington from John Robinson, 17 April 1756

From John Robinson

April 17. 1756

Dear Sir

I recd your Letter by the Express and am sorry to find by it the unhappy situation our back Inhabitants are in from the frequent Incursions of the French and Indians, owing in my Opinion in a great Measure to the obstanctcy and dasturdlyness of the People themselves, and, I am sorry to say it, I fear from the Conduct of some of our Officers, of whom there are terrible reports,1 but I make no doubt you will by your Presence and Prudence put a stop to their irregularities, and quiet the Minds of the desponding inhabitants, The Assembly has determined to raise as many men as will make the number in pay 1500, not by new Companies but by adding to the old ones, the men to be raised are to be drafted out of the several Counties except Hampshire Frederick Augusta Bedford and Hallifax, which were excepted because if any of the Militia should be sent out it is imagined they will be taken out of those Counties.2 I have detained Mr Kirk Patrick longer than I intended owing to some misunderstanding between the Governor and myself, he refused to give me a Warrant for the last 3000, and continued so to do till this morning, I have now sent you by him £2416.14 which is all I could get ready for him, the Assembly has ordered £25. to be divided among the Party that killed M. Donville which I desire you will pay them, and I will account with you for it, I must also desire you will pay Capt. Stewart £15. for me.3 The Memorial of the Officers is now before the House and I dare say their request will be readily complied with.4 you may be assured of my Assistance and that I am with the greatest Truth Dr Sir Your Affect. Freind

John Robinson


1Robinson was referring to GW’s letter of 7 April 1756. See GW’s letters of 18 April to Dinwiddie and to Robinson for his response to Dinwiddie’s charges of misconduct in the Virginia Regiment made in Dinwiddie’s letter to GW of 8 April 1756.

2For the drafting of the militia, see Dinwiddie to GW, 15 April 1756, n.2, and especially 8 May 1756, n.4.

3After assuming command of the Virginia Regiment in September 1755, GW chose for his secretary John Kirkpatrick, a Scot living in Alexandria. See GW to Dinwiddie, 11–14 Oct. 1755, n.25. For the details of the skirmish in which the Frenchman Douville was killed, see GW to Dinwiddie, 7 April 1756, and enclosures and notes. Capt. Robert Stewart of the Virginia Regiment, another Scot and a veteran of the battle on the Monongahela, commanded a troop of light horse that GW in May stationed at Maidstone on the Potomac, where Stewart and his men remained for over a year. For details of Stewart’s life and relations with GW, see GW to George Gordon, 15 Sept. 1755 (first letter), n.1.

4The journal of the House of Burgesses recorded on 9 April 1756: “A Memorial signed by Col. George Washington and most of the Officers of the Virginia Regiment, praying that this House will address His Majesty, to put the said Regiment on the English Establishment, was presented to the House and read,

Ordered, That the said Memorial do lie on the Table” (JHB description begins H. R. McIlwaine and John Pendleton Kennedy, eds. Journals of the House of Burgesses of Virginia. 13 vols. Richmond, 1905–15. description ends , 1752–1755, 1756–1758, 362).

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