New Bridge 21st July 1780 9 OClock P.M.
being convinced that our field pieces were too light to make the wished Impression on the Block house by Bulls ferry, from an experience of more that an hour (at no greater Distance than from 50 to 70 Yards)—during which time both Officers & men evinced a Degree of bravery seldom equalled—but never excelled—and seeing the Enemy in motion On york Island & their shipping under way—together with certain accounts of the Embarking a very large body of troops from Voluntines hill—it was unanimously Determined in a Council of War on the field to withdraw the artillery & fall back by easy degrees to this place—to prevent the Disagreeble consequences of being shut up in Bergen Neck.
we accordingly moved off after burning the flats & boats laying at the Landing & Driving the Cattle from that Country which was part of our plan.
our loss is from 30 to 60 killed & wounded which we carried off without the least molestation. I will have the honor of transmitting your Excellency the particulars tomorrow.
I think it my duty to mention that the Enemy are in full motion on the North river, chief part of their troops Embarked—as they have completed their foraging in East & West Chester—may not good policy Induce them to take part between the Liberty pole & this place in order to render that Essential article very Difficult for your Excellency to procure in case of a Siege.
I will shift my ground about two in the morning & fall back toward camp. Interim I am your Excellencys most Obt Hume Sert
DLC: Papers of George Washington.
at the New Dock of Closter July 21 1780
The Enemy agreeable to a rough calculation has embarked (on board nine ships one schooner & two Sloops) about three thousand Troops, and are now under way [ ] down towards New York, they appear to have left a small Encampment near Phillips House but perhaps not many Troops more than may be necessary to forwd on the remains of their Baggage, if any there be. there [was] several small Vessells each as sloops & [schooners] gone up this day and lay near Philips’s House which possably they mean to Embark the remainder of their Troops & Baggage on board, off—The Movements of their Troops, & the Manor, appears to be very Genl—I am with Respect your most obd. hbe Servant,
21st July 1780 9 cClo. A.M.
Agreeable to your Request, I sent a Dragoon to deliver your Letter to Capt. Laurence who could not be found, the dragoons was informed by an invalid belongg to his Company (fit for duty) to Fort Lee I arrivd at this ground at day brake, and observed some motion of the Enemy as burning their Huts &c.—I cannot from this place have a prospect of Valentines Hill, but am of the Openion, they have marched from that ground, as their has this moment appeard in sigt about two thousand of the Enemy together with a number of Waggons which appears to be loaded with baggage they have embarked about eight hundd men & Continue to embark, the Ships they have six large boats togeather with about as many small, in which they transport about seven or eight hundd men at once, I have not as yet kindled a fire, as I do not expect they will land here, and conclude it might ocasion an Anxiety—I have materials and shall build a fire the inst. it may appear necessary, they continue marching down & Imbarking—I am your most obdt Sert