George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Colonel John Hoskins Stone, 22 January 1778

From Colonel John Hoskins Stone

Baltimore [Md.]
Jany 22nd 1778

May it please your Excellency

Having no field officer to my Regiment who can do duty myself & the Lt Colo. (Forrest) being wounded and the Major having resigned it will be some time before either of us will be fit to take command,1 and being very anxious to compleat and put my Regiment in the best order against the ensueing Campaign—by the consent and desire of Lt Colo. Smith I take the liberty to beg of your Excellency to permit Colo. Smith to take command in my Regiment untill either myself or the Lt Colo. are fit for the field—this will keep the Regiment properly together and will be very agreeable to all that Corps as Colo. Smith has served with them, the 4th M. Regt which Colo. Smith commands in at present being small and having three field officers with it cannot be any inconvenience to that Regt the officers for the most part of my Regiment are very young, it wou’d therefore be the more necessary that an officer of some experience shou’d command them—wishing Your Excellency all health honor and happiness I am with great respect Yr Very obt Hum. Sert

J. H. Stone


1Uriah Forrest (1756–1805) of St. Mary’s County, Md., was appointed captain of the 2d Independent Maryland Company in January 1776 and promoted to captain in the 3d Maryland Regiment of the flying camp in July of that year. In December 1776 he became major of the 3d Maryland Regiment, and the next year he was promoted to lieutenant colonel of the 1st Maryland Regiment, with his commission dated April 1777. Forrest lost a leg at the Battle of Germantown on 4 Oct. 1777 but was eventually able to return to service under his previous rank; he transferred to the 7th Maryland Regiment in August 1779 but was back with the 1st Maryland by the time of his resignation in February 1781. Forrest lived in London from 1783 to 1786, when he returned to America to settle in Georgetown, Md., of which he was mayor in 1792. He served as a delegate to the Confederation Congress in 1787 and as a member of the U.S. Congress in 1793–94. William Sterrett (d. 1787) was created a first lieutenant of Col. William Smallwood’s Maryland Regiment in January 1776 and was taken prisoner at Long Island in August 1776. Exchanged in November of that year, Sterrett became a captain in the 1st Maryland Regiment in December 1776 and was commissioned a major in April 1777. He resigned on 16 Dec. 1777.

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