New Windsor 7th May 1781
Permit me, on this first occasion of writing to you, to begin my letter with congratulations on your recovered health, & I offer them sincerely.
Colo. Menonville put into my hands two days since, your favor of the 29th Ulto—If my inclination was seconded by the means, I should not fail to treat this Gentleman as the friend of my friend—and if it is not in my power to comply with his wishes on the score of Provisions, I will deal with him candidly by communicating the causes.
I am impressed with too high a sense of the abilities and candor of the Chevalier Chartellus, to conceive that he is capable of creating false hopes; his communication therefore of the West India intelligence comes with merited force—and I would to God it were in my power to make the proper advantages of it! But, if you can recollect a private conversation which I had with you in the Count de Rochambeaus Chamber, you will be perswaded it is not; especially when I add, that the want, of which I then complained, exists in much greater force than it did at that moment; but such preparations as can be made, I will make, for the events you allude to—The candid world, & well informed Officer, will expect no more.
May you participate in those blessings you have invoked heaven for me—and may you live to see a happy termination of a struggle which was begun, and has been continued for the purpose of rescueg America from impending slavery, and securing to its Inhabitants their indubitable rights—in which you bear a conspicuous part—is the ardent wish of Dr Sir—Yr Most Obedt & Most Hble Servt