George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Major General Philemon Dickinson, 22 June 1778

From Major General Philemon Dickinson

Bordentown [N.J.] 22d June 1778

Dear Sir

At one oClock this morning, I received information, that the Enemy were endeavouring to surround us, with a strong detachment which marched last Evening from Holly, the Informant said, they intended to take possession, of Crosswicks, & the Drawbridge, whilst their main body moved on, in our rear—I thought our situation very precarious, therefore am now preparing to cross, the Creek (Crosswicks) having called in all the scouting Parties.

Genl Maxwell with his Brigade, & part of the Militia, will take post, at Crosswicks bridge—myself near the Drawbridge, where I shall throw up two small works, as the Ground is very advantageous, & will cost them some trouble.1

Several Expresses arrived here within a few minutes, all of whom agree, that the Enemy are advancing towards the Black-horse, their advanced Guard, is one mile on this side Slab Town—the body which lay at Moores Town, joined those at Mount Holly, yesterday afternoon at 2, OClock, they are all now collected—& I believe their march will be more rapid—I shall write your Excellency this Evening again—one of the Videts, thinks they are taking the Job’s Town road2—this matter will very soon, be ascertaind—but think it proper, not to detain the Express—as they are actually on their march. I have the honor to be, Your Excellency’s Most Obt

Philemon Dickinson


1Crosswicks Creek begins in Burlington and Monmouth Counties, N.J., and runs northwest through the town of Crosswicks (where a bridge crossed it on the road from Bordentown to Freehold) to the Delaware River at Bordentown. The “Drawbridge” crossed the creek near Bordentown. Both bridges were destroyed by the Americans on 23 June, but Dickinson’s works caused only slight delay to the British advance; see General Orders, Charles Stewart to GW, and Dickinson to GW (fourth letter), all 23 June.

2The main road from Mount Holly to Freehold, N.J., ran through Jobstown, about six miles northeast of Mount Holly.

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