George Washington Papers

To George Washington from John Hancock, 25 October 1777

From John Hancock

York Town, Pennsylvania October 25th 1777.


I have been duely honoured with your Favours of the 18th and 21st and immediately laid them before Congress; from whom I have it in Charge to forward the enclosed Resolves, with a Request that you will pay that Attention to them which they require.1

You will recieve herewith two Bundles of Commissions, which I should have forwarded sooner, had I not been prevented from signing them, by a severe Fit of the Gout.

I have not as yet heard a Word from Genl Gates with Respect to the important Intelligence of the Surrender of Genl Burgoyne and his Army. Should the agreeable News reach York Town, before my Departure, I will instantly forward it to you: or should it not arrive till afterwards, my Successor will undoubtedly do himself that Pleasure. I have the Honour to be with the utmost Esteem Sir Your most obed. & very hble Servt

John Hancock Presid.

LS, DLC:GW; LB, DNA:PCC, item 12A.

1Hancock enclosed copies of several resolutions of 20 and 22 October. In the resolutions of 20 Oct., Congress requests the Maryland governor and council to send state companies of matrosses to reinforce the Continental artillery regiments, expresses pleasure at Gen. John Sullivan’s vindication by the court of inquiry that investigated his conduct in the Staten Island expedition, promotes Robert Howe and Alexander McDougall to major general, and appoints William Massey deputy mustermaster general for South Carolina and Georgia. In the resolutions of 22 Oct. Congress refers to GW for his determination a court-martial verdict condemning a Virginia soldier to be shot for desertion, and it directs the commissary general of issues to apply to GW “for a certificate of the provisions allowed for each ration drawn by the army” previous to his appointment to that office and to have provisions delivered to the army agreeable to the certificate until further orders. Congress also requests GW’s views on “the alteration proposed by the commissary general of purchases in the ration at present ordered by Congress to be issued to the army” (DLC:GW; 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 , 9:822–23, 828, 830–31).

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