George Washington Papers

General Orders, 7 February 1776

General Orders

Head Quarters, Cambridge, Feby 7th 1776

Parole Coventry.Countersign Beverly.

The Continental Congress having been pleased to order, and direct, that there shall be one Chaplain to two Regiments, and that the pay of each Chaplain shall be Thirty-three dollars and one third, per Kalendar Month—The Revd Abiel Leonard is appointed Chaplain to the Regiment of Artillery, under the command of Col. Knox, and to the 20th Regiment, at present commanded by Lt Col. Durkee.1

As there can be but fourteen Chaplains under this establishment, to the 28 Regiments (including the Artillery, and Riffle Regiments) and as preference will be given to those Chaplains who served last Year, provided their conduct, and attendance, have been unexceptionable: The Brigadiers are to enquire into this matter and with the Colonels and commanding Officers of the several Regiments, arrange them agreeable to the above direction, and make report thereof that orders, may issue accordingly.2

The Commanding Officers of the regiments upon the new establishment, are each of them to apply to Commissary Cheever, to morrow Morning; for One Barrel of powder, with a proportionable quantity of Ball and Cartridge-paper; which they are to order to be immediately made up in Cartridges, and put up in a proper manner, according to the directions Commissary Cheever will give—This Ammunition, the commanding Officers are to keep in a safe place, under their immediate Care, to be ready to be delivered, when occasion may call for its being distributed.

A General Court Martial to sit to morrow Morning, in Cambridge, to try such prisoners as shall be brought before them; All Evidences & persons concerned to attend the Court. The Court to assemble at Mr Pomroys at ten in the forenoon.3

Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1Congress approved these orders regarding the chaplains on 16 Jan. 1776 (JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds. Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789. 34 vols. Washington, D.C., 1904–37. description ends , 4:61). For GW’s good opinion of Leonard, see his letter to Jonathan Trumbull, Sr., of 15 Dec. 1775. The colonelcy of the 20th Continental Regiment had been reserved for Benedict Arnold, but on 10 Jan. Congress promoted him to brigadier general.

2Artemas Ward’s orderly book includes here the words “for their Appointments” (MHi).

3Artemas Ward’s orderly book says that the general court-martial was “to sit tommorrow Morning at 11 oClock at Mr Pomeroys” (ibid.).

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