George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Major Benjamin Tallmadge, 25 August 1778

To Major Benjamin Tallmadge

Camp [White Plains] Augt 25th 1778.


I shall be glad to see you upon the business mentioned in yours of this date.1 If Colo. Sheldon is acquainted with W—— and the circumstances as you have related them to me, let him come also—You should be perfectly convinced of the Integrety of W—— previous to his imbarking in the business proposed—this being done I shall be happy in employing him—but there will be an impropriety in his coming with you to head Quarters, as a knowledge of that circumstance in the enemy might blast the whole design.2

You will let me see you this afternoon—if you can come to Dinner at three Oclock I shall be glad of Yr Companies. I am Sir Yr Very Hble Servt

Go: Washington

ALS, Lathrop C. Harper, Inc., catalog, NS no.1 (n.d.), item 113. GW’s closing and signature are in the left margin of the letter.

1Tallmadge’s letter has not been found.

2“W——” may have been Abraham Woodhull (1750–1826) of Setauket, N.Y., who by October 1778 was sending intelligence to Tallmadge under the pseudonym “Samuel Culper, Sr.” Tallmadge wrote in his memoir that “This year (1778) I opened a private correspondence with some persons in New York (for Gen. Washington) which lasted through the war. … I kept one or more boats continually employed in crossing the Sound on this business” (Tallmadge, Memoir description begins Memoir of Col. Benjamin Tallmadge, Prepared by Himself, at the Request of his Children. 1858. Reprint. New York, 1968. description ends , 29).

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