George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Lewis Nicola, 22 May 1782

Newburgh May 22d 82


With a mixture of great surprise & astonishment I have read with attention the Sentiments you have submitted to my perusal. Be assured, Sir, no occurrence in the course of the War, has given me more painful sensations than your information of there being such ideas existing in the Army as you have expressed, & I must view with abhorrence, and reprehend with severity—For the present, the communicatn of them will rest in my own bosom, unless some further agitation of the matter, shall make a disclosure necessary.

I am much at a loss to conceive what part of my conduct could have given encouragement to an address which to me seems big with the greatest mischiefs that can befall my Country. If I am not deceived in the knowledge of myself, you could not have found a person to whom your schemes are more disagreeable—at the same time in justice to my own feeling I must add, that no man possesses a more sincere wish to see ample Justice done to the Army than I do, and as far as my powers & influence, in a constitution[al] way extend, they shall be employed to the utmost of my abilities to effect it, should there be any occasion—Let me [conj]ure you then, if you have any regard for your Country, concern for your self or posterity—or respect for me, to banish these thoughts from your Mind, & never communicate, as from yourself, or any one else, a sentiment of the like nature. With esteem I am Sir Yr Most Obedt Servt

Go: Washington

The foregoing is an exact copy of a Letter which we sealed & sent off to Colonel Nichola at the request of the writer of it.

D. Humphrys Aid de Camp

Jona. Trumbull Jun. Secty

DLC: Papers of George Washington.

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