George Washington Papers

To George Washington from William Crawford, 12 July 1779

From William Crawford

Fort Pitt [Pa.] July the 12th 1779

Dear General

Som time Last Summer I wrot you in regard to my being Left out of the Virga Line as it put it out of my Power to Serve as an Officer with the Continantall Army with my proper rank but I do not know wheather my Letter cam to your hands or not.1

when General McIntosh went to head Quarters this Spring he told me he would Aquint you with my case, General McIntosh give me for answear that I must attend at head Quarters my self or I co[u]ld not have the matter Setled but that I might Stay Som time to have my matters Som way Setled.2

which I must beg leave to do there being a way of having them now don, Congrass having Sent an Odetor to this Department for the porpose of Setling Accts of the Army.3

Colo. Clarks Afairs has Changed the dispo[si]tion of the Endiens much,4 They have don very Litle mischef this Summer and in pertiqualor Sence the People from down the river burnt the Shawnee town or part of it and Killd three of there Chief men5 a very Litle Trouble would distroy the hole Shawnee Towns by Sending a party of about 600 men to the Mouth Licking Creek below the Siothe. from thence it is no more then 50 Miles as I am informd by those that was in the Action and a good road the Hole way being no hills or Defils to pravent us from Carying of two field peaces 4 or 6 pounders that would Bater down Block houses which the Shawnees has Built to defend themselves in there towns6 the Poeople at Kantock and at the falls7 would be Glad as they have informd me to Joyn a party from this place for that porpose when the Corn was in rosting Years would be a good time for that porpose.

I only Mention this Sir for your consideration in Case Matters Should not be other ways Setled.

Colo. Broadhead has spooke to me to Joyn him with som of the Militia of Virga to go on a Short Campain against a Mingo town up they Alegania which I have agreed to, as I would not wish to hurt the Service or leve it in the power of him to Say I should not do Every thing in my Power to Serve my Country the only motive I have for Serving one moment,8 as soon as that is done and my Accounts is Setled I will Attend at head Quarters unless you Should order me Other ways.

As soon as Fort Randolph at the Mouth of the Canaway was avaquated the Endiens burt it.9

Agreeable to my Promise I advertisaed your Land on Millers run forwarning all Person from Purchessing any part of it as som was proposseing Seling it and I Shall do it again as the Land Office is now open for Patanting Lands in the new Purchasess.10

I hop Sir you will Excuse my troubling you with this Long Letter I am sir with Sinsear Esteem your most Obedent Hume Servt

W: Crawford


1No letter from Crawford to GW on this subject has been found, but for his desire to be colonel of the 13th Virginia Regiment, see GW to Timothy Pickering, 23 May 1778.

2For the visit of Brig. Gen. Lachlan McIntosh to GW’s camp at Middlebrook in early May, see McIntosh to GW, 3 and 14 May, and GW’s first letter to John Jay of 11 May; see also GW to McIntosh, 5 March. McIntosh presumably advised Crawford via a letter, which has not been identified.

3Congress had authorized auditors for each department of the Continental army in January (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 : 13:112–13).

4Lt. Col. George Rogers Clark and his small body of Virginia militia had conducted an expedition over several months, beginning in June 1778, that captured Kaskaskia, Vincennes, and other enemy settlements north of the Ohio River. Clark also scored a major success in capturing Henry Hamilton, the British lieutenant governor of Detroit (see Daniel Brodhead to GW, 29 May, and n.1 to that document; see also Thomas Jefferson to GW, 19 June, and GW to Jefferson, 10 July).

5Crawford is referring to an attack against Chillicothe, a Shawnee town just north of present-day Xenia, Ohio (see Jefferson to GW, 19 June, n.6).

6Crawford’s directions suggest that he meant the Shawnee towns of Chillicothe, near the headwaters of the Little Miami River, and Piqua, further north along the Mad River, both in what is now southwestern Ohio. The Licking River flows north and empties into the Ohio River at present-day Covington, Ky., about eighty miles west of the mouth of the Scioto River.

7Crawford is referring to the Falls of the Ohio River near present-day Louisville, Kentucky.

8For Col. Daniel Brodhead’s expedition up the Allegheny River valley from Pittsburgh between 11 Aug. and 14 Sept., see Brodhead to GW, 16–24 Sept. (NNGL); see also GW to Brodhead, 13 July, and n.4 to that document. Crawford does not mention Brodhead’s expedition in his letter to GW of 10 Aug. (DLC:GW).

9For the evacuation of Fort Randolph earlier in the year, see Brodhead to GW, 5 June.

10Crawford is referring to a 2,813-acre tract on Millers Run, a branch of Chartiers (Shurtees) Creek, about eight miles northwest of present-day Canonsburg, Pa. (see Crawford to GW, 20 April 1771, and n.3 to that document, in Papers, Colonial Series, description begins W. W. Abbot et al., eds. The Papers of George Washington, Colonial Series. 10 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1983–95. description ends 8:449–50; see also Papers, Confederation Series, description begins W. W. Abbot et al., eds. The Papers of George Washington, Confederation Series. 6 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1992–97. description ends 2:338–56).

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