George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Richard Peters, 21 February 1777

From Richard Peters

War Office [Baltimore] Feby 21st 1777


I am directed by the Board of War to inform you that it is the Opinion of Congress that the Men of the Corps of Virginia Light Horse under the Command of Major Bland receive the usual Bounty on their reinlisting for three Years or during the War into the Continental Service.1

General Ward having declined the Command of the Eastern Department I have it in Direction to enclose a Copy of his Letter that your Excellency may supply his Place with a proper Successor.2 I have the Honour to be with the greatest Respect your most obedt & most humble Servt

Richard Peters Secy

Enclosed are Copies of a Letter & Return sent by Mr Meeson from Albany.3

Congress having resolved to retaliate the Treatment of Genl Lee on the Hessian Field Officers & Col: Campbell the Board would be obliged by your Excellency’s Information where the former were sent. Lieut Col: Scheffer Majors Hanstein & Matthias are at Dumfries & Lt Col: Bretthauer at Baltimore but the Destination of the rest was not made known at least is not at present recollected.4


2The enclosed copy of Maj. Gen. Artemas Ward’s letter to Hancock of 28 Jan. 1777 has not been identified, but another copy of the letter is in Ward’s orderly book, 20 April 1775–3 Mar. 1777, in MHi: Ward Papers (see also 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 , 7:134). Ward informed Hancock that he wanted to resign from the army no later than 1 Mar. 1777 “by reason of several circumstances,” and on 20 Mar. 1777 he officially relinquished command of the eastern department to William Heath (see GW’s letters to Heath and to Ward of 3 Mar. 1777, and Heath’s diary entries for 14 and 20 Mar. 1777, in Wilson, Heath’s Memoirs description begins Rufus Rockwell Wilson, ed. Heath’s Memoirs of the American War. 1798. Reprint. New York, 1904. description ends , 126–27).

3These enclosures have not been identified.

4Franziscus Scheffer, Ludwig August von Hanstein, Johann Justus Matthaus, and Balthasar Bretthauer were captured at the Battle of Trenton on 26 Dec. 1776.

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