George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Lieutenant General John Burgoyne, 20 December 1777

To Lieutenant General John Burgoyne

Head Qrs [Valley Forge] Decemr 20th 1777.


When I had the honor of addressing you on the 17th Inst., I informed you, that I had transmitted a Copy of Your Letter to Congress. The inclosed Copy of their Resolution passed upon the Subject which I send in pursuance of their direction, will shew you the only Answer I have obtained to your propositions. It remains solely with Congress to grant the indulgencies which you request. The Bearer will immediately return, by whom you may have an Opportunity of writing to them. I have the Honor to be with due respect Sir Your Most Obedt servt

Go: Washington

Df, in Robert Hanson Harrison’s writing, DLC:GW; copy, P.R.O.: Colonial Office, Misc. Manuscripts, John Burgoyne Letter Book; Varick transcript, DLC:GW. Although GW indicates in his reply to Henry Laurens of 22 Dec. that this letter was written on Sunday, 21 Dec., his letter to William Heath of 20 Dec. seems to confirm that the date of the draft and the copies are correct. The copy in P.R.O. contains a copy of Congress’s resolution of 17 Dec. directing GW to inform Burgoyne that “Congress will not receive nor Consider any proposition for indulgence or altering the Terms of the Convention of Saratoga, unless immediately directed to their own body” (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 , 9:1032).

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