George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Nathaniel Woodhull, 15 June 1776

From Nathaniel Woodhull

In provincial Congress; New York June 15th 1776


The Congress acknowledge the receipt of your favour of the 13th Instant respecting the retention of Salted provisions by some persons on Long Island.

I am directed by the Congress to inform you that by a Resolution of yesterday, a Copy whereof was furnished to the Commissary General, they depend that he will obtain the provisions desired—And that the Congress has in Contemplation some more general & effectual measures for securing the live stock in certain parts of the Colony for the Benefit of the Army.

Inclosed is a Copy of some Information obtained from Mr Abraham Livingston of a Stock of Cattle in an Exposed Situation in New Jersey, of which a Copy will be forwarded to the president of New Jersey Congress or Committee of Safety.1 I have the Honor to be most respectfully Sir your very humble servt

By Order

Nathel Woodhull Presdt


1The New York provincial congress considered GW’s letter to Woodhull of 13 June later that same day and appointed a committee to wait on commissary general Joseph Trumbull in order to “ascertain in whose possession the pork is, and also inquire what has become of the pork purchased in Connecticut.” The committee reported on 14 June that Trumbull “informed them that no person was authorized to receive the pork in question [in Connecticut], or pay for it; that, therefore, the holders sold it.” The provincial congress then questioned New York commissary Abraham Livingston about the pork on Long Island. “On being consulted by Col. Trumbull relative to the article of pork,” Livingston said, “he informed Mr. Trumbull that there was, in his opinion, considerable quantities on Long island; that he thought and was confident in his own mind that the reason why it was not disposed of, was from a dislike many persons here had to receiving Continental money, added to a desire of serving the British fleet and army; that those persons he believes chiefly resided in Queens and Suffolk counties. Mr. Livingston further informed the Congress, that he has reason to believe there is at least sixty head of horned fat cattle on Sandy Hook, and about one hundred more at or near the Neversinks; the whole of which he supposes to be the property of Messrs. Hartshorn.” The provincial congress ordered the information about the New Jersey cattle sent to GW and the New Jersey provincial congress and resolved that persons on Long Island who owned large quantities of salted pork “ought to dispose of the said pork at the market price to the Commissary-General, and on their refusal, that he be . . . authorized to take the same, on paying the owner or owners thereof the market price” (N.Y. Prov. Congress Journals description begins Journals of the Provincial Congress, Provincial Convention, Committee of Safety, and Council of Safety of the State of New-York, 1775–1776–1777. 2 vols. Albany, 1842. (Microfilm Collection of Early State Records). description ends , 1:492–94; the enclosed copy of Abraham Livingston’s information, dated 14 June 1776 and signed by John McKesson, is in DLC:GW).

Index Entries