New London 28th Octr 1780 8 oclock P.M.
May it please Your Excellency
This Morning appeared of this Harbour (Standing into Gardiners Bay) a Fleet of Ships—but the weather being very thick, was not able to count more than ten Sail, though I was inform’d by a Boatman that arrived here, that he counted last evening to the South Eastward of Fishers Island thirteen Sail which appeard to be large Ships, by the Appearence of these Ships & the Signal Guns they have fired Suppose it to be Arbuthnots Fleet returnd again—Should have sent my Boat for the purpose of reconitering them this day if the weather had been proper—shall write his Excellency General Rochambeau as Soon as I can get the Necessary information of their Numbers & Strength and if any thing material will inform Your Excellency. I have the Honor to be Your Excellency’s Most Obt Servant
Wm Ledyard Lt Colo. Commandr
DLC: Papers of George Washington.