George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Joseph Marsh, 3 November 1780

Dresden on the New Hampshire Grants Novr 3d A.D. 1780


May it please your Excellency—We have this moment received a paper attested by Capt. Safford of which the enclosed is a copy—its contents are to us unintelligible and alarming—we know not what construction to put on it, unless a negociation is on foot for a separate peace for the new State, which we have heard has been threatened if Congress should not acknowledge the independence of Vermont and admit them to union—Under these apprehensions we send the enclosed to your Excellency, as the consequences of such negotiation may be speedily fatal to the settlements contiguous to Connecticut river and more dangerous to the united States than the late treachery at West-point.

The enemy in number three hundred destroyed Royalton and part of Sharon in this vicinity about a fortn’t ago and took thirty prisoners—Scouts lately returned from Onion river discovered last week about one thousand of the enemy near its confluence whose object is supposed to be [Cohos] or this place—our situation at best is critical and we are in danger of being totally destroyed soon unless assistance is granted for our defence.

Our apprehensions respecting the enclosed may be groundless, but our fears are great.

I write this in behalf of the General Committee on the grants contiguous to Connecticut river, and have the honor to be with highest sentiments of duty and esteem Sir Your Excellencys most obedient and most humble Servant

Joseph Marsh Chairman

DLC: Papers of George Washington.


Extract of a letter from Major Allen dated Fort Vengeance Octr 30th A.D. 1780—to Capt. Jesse Safford at Bethel-Fort

30 October 1780

Dear Capt.

I received a letter from General Allen last evening informing that the evening before he received a flag from the British troops at Crown Point with letters of importance from the commander in chief at Quebec—Major Carlton hath pledged his faith that all hostilities on his part shall cease during the negociation, and he expects the same on our part—You are therefore carefully to observe the rules of war and give strict orders to your scouts and troops to govern themselves accordingly.

A copy of this letter you will forward to the troops stationed on your side of the mountain in this State—I shall inform you of every move necessary for you moving on this side of the mountain.

If the spirit of this letter were made known to the inhabitants on your side of the mountain it would be well. I am dear Sir Your humble Servant

Ebenezer Allen Major Comdt

The above is a true copy from an extract attested by the above name Jesse Safford comanding a party of Men raised by the new State & stationed at Bethel on White river.

Taken by desire of the General Committee on the New Hampn. Grants contiguous to Connecticut river—Attestn

Bezr: Woodward Clerk

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