George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Brigadier General Hugh Mercer, 25 July 1776

From Brigadier General Hugh Mercer

Perth Amboy [N.J.] 25 July 1776


Inclosd is a Return of the Troops in New Jersey—There was a very capital Error in the Return of Yesterday—thro’ the carelessness of my Clerk.1

The Position of the Enemy continues the Same as when I wrote last—I have sent to such of the Counties here as had not compleated the Levies for the Army at New York to give all possible Assistance & forward such men as were inlisted—such of those Troops as have come in my way I have pushed on with all expedition. I have the Honour to be Sir Your Excellencys Mot hb. Svt

H. Mercer


1See “A General Return of the Troops in New-Jersey, under the command of Brig. Gen. Mercer,” this date, in Force, American Archives description begins Peter Force, ed. American Archives. 9 vols. Washington, D.C., 1837–53. description ends , 5th ser., 1:574. This return shows six of Mercer’s nine battalions as having fewer men than previously reported and that overall his command contained 3,092 rank and file rather than the 3,698 rank and file shown on his earlier return (see Mercer to GW, 24 July, n. 1). The figures on this day’s return also indicate that Mercer had 283 commissioned officers and 302 noncommissioned officers serving under him instead of the 295 commissioned officers and 262 noncommissioned officers reported in the return of 24 July. No staff officers are included in the 25 July return. Most of Mercer’s men were defending Perth Amboy, where according to this day’s return there were 1,723 infantry rank and file, 110 artillery matrosses, and 4 cannon. The posts at Woodbridge, Elizabeth, and the Newark ferry each had 20 matrosses and 2 cannon. There were 577 infantry rank and file at Woodbridge, 500 infantry at Elizabeth, and 122 infantry at the Newark ferry.

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