George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Colonel Zebulon Butler, 1 April 1779

To Colonel Zebulon Butler

Head Quarters Middlebrook 1st April.1 1779.


I received your letter, comprehending the transactions at your post from the 23d to the 28th Ulto.

Considering the importance of the place I have ordered up the German regiment, Armands and Schotts corps, as a reinforcement.2 therefore You will take the necessary precautions for their barracks—and give proper notice to the commissaries to increase or proportion their supply to your numbers.

I need not recommend to you that3 watchfulness and discipl[in]e in your patroles and scouting parties, which can alone give security to the garrison, as well as prevent a surprize on their own part; or to your giving that protection to the Country consistent with your orders & force.

On examining the return I was surprized to find on furlo⟨ugh⟩ 13 men from Capn Spauldings compa⟨ny⟩ altho’ it has been expresly raised for the defence of the frontier. You will be pleased to call in all who are on furlough as soon as possi⟨ble⟩.4 I am sir &c. Your &c.

G— W—

Df, in James McHenry’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1On the draft manuscript, McHenry inadvertently wrote “March.” GW’s aide-de-camp Alexander Hamilton subsequently corrected that error by striking out “March” and writing “April” above the line.

2For this order, see GW to Edward Hand, 24 March and this date; see also Hand to GW, 5 April, and n.2 to that document.

3At this place on the draft manuscript, McHenry first wrote “diligence” and then struck out that word.

4The return that Butler had sent to GW has not been identified. For Capt. Simon Spalding and his independent company, see Hand to GW, 29 March, and n.10.

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