George Washington Papers

From George Washington to The States, 30 June 1780

Head Quarters Ramapaugh 30th June 1780.


As the Levies required of the States for filling their Battalions have not yet joined the Army or the French Fleet arrived, I beg leave to inform you (or your Excellency) that it will be unnecessary for the Militia, which the Honble the Committee of Congress were pleased to call for on a late occasion, to be at the place appointed for their Rendezvous, before the 25th of next month. By this time I would willingly hope that things will be in such a train, as to enable us to commence our operations, and to make their aid essential. The present Crisis is by far the most important and delicate that this Country has ever experienced, and it pains me in the extreme that we are so backward in all our measures. I hope a moment will not be lost in pushing on the Levies to fill the Battalions. Our Allies would be chagrined, were they to arrive to day, to find that we have but a handful of Men in the Feild, and would doubt, more than probable, whether we had any serious intentions to prosecute measures with vigor. If we do not avail ourselves of their succour by the most decisive and energetic Steps on our part, the aid they so generously bring, may prove our ruin, and at best it will be, in such case, among the most unfortunate events, next to that of absolute ruin, that could have befallen us.

I think it may duty, as often as I have the honor of addressing the States, to forewarn them, that the completion of their Battalions to their full establishment of Five hundred and four Rank and File, is a measure of indispensable necessity to the intended co-operation, and that without it, we cannot even attempt any thing decisive. I have the honor to be with the greatest Respect Sir Your Excellency’s Most obt Servt

Go: Washington.

P.S. As my request to delay the assembling of the Militia at the place appointed for their rendezvous proceeds principally from the French fleet’s not being arrived—I beg leave to observe, if this event should have taken place when this reaches your hands, my request is not to have an operation, but in such case it is my desire that the assembling of the Militia should be hastened as much as possible.


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