George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Gouverneur Morris, 31 August 1778

From Gouverneur Morris

Congress [Philadelphia] 31st August 1778.

Dear General.

I wrote you a Letter long since which went backwards & whether it hath ever Yet got so far forwards as to reach you I am utterly incapacitated even to guess trusting however that you have got or will get it I shall not from Memory repeat what if there at all is at best but faintly traced.1

At present I trouble you on the Subject of recruiting your Army which is at this Moment in Debate before the House. It hath been proposed to give ten Dollars in Specie and ten Square Dollars to Recruits which I have offered and it is determined in the Negative.2 I will not fatigue you with the Reasons opperating on my Mind they derived not inconsiderably from the probable Consequences of the Measure even upon the Army. Among others I fear to inflame the Rapacity of Soldiers with the Love by the Possession of a Metal of which we have such a plentiful Lack. However let me have your Sentiments for I can promise you a Mind open to Conviction if you differ in Opinion desirous of Information in all Cases and willing to urge your good Reasons should the Matter be again opened.

I can send you no News and therefore I shall only repeat what you knew before that I am most sincerely yours

Gouvr Morris

My Compliments to Bannister to Genl Reed to all Friends.3


1Morris may have been referring to his letter to GW of 2 August.

2For Congress’s action of this date on army recruiting, see 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 , 11:853–54.

3Joseph Reed and John Banister were serving on the Congress’s committee of arrangement at GW’s camp.

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