To Major General William Heath
Head Quarters [West Point] 29th Sepr 1779
General Du portail proposes to reconnoitre the Enemy’s situation upon Verplanks point tomorrow Morning.1 He will apply to you for a proper covering party and will fix the time of their being at Peekskill in the Morning. Be pleased to give orders for the party.2 I am Dear Sir Your most obt Servt
LS, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, MHi: Heath Papers; Df, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.
1. For GW’s orders to brigadier generals Duportail and Henry Knox to conduct a reconnaissance of the British forts at Stony Point and Verplanck Point, N.Y., see GW to Anthony Wayne, 26 Sept., n.1. For Knox’s report on their reconnaissance, see Knox to GW, 30 September.
2. On this date, Heath, at Mandeville’s in Dutchess County, N.Y., issued orders to Lt. Col. Isaac Sherman, of the 2d Connecticut Regiment, reading: “you will please to repair to Peekskill to morrow morning by nine oClock where you will take the Command of the old and new Pickets The former is under the Command of Major Walbridge the latter Major Cleft with these you will march as a Covering party to General Duportail Chief Engineer who will reconnoitre the Enemys works at Verplanks point. you will dispose of and post the pickets in Such manner as the Engineer may advise” (MHi: Heath Papers).