George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Elisha Sheldon, 6 January 1783

New Town January 6th 1783


By the late regulations between the Superintendant of Finance and the Contractors for supplying the Army with provision, I perceive that the principle adopted for making Compensation to Officers for their retained Rations, by way of subsistance, is that in their own account of Subsistance money is included that of all Servants not bearing Arms to which they are severally entitled—By the list of Officers and Servants annexed to the aforesaid Regulations, I perceive that the System has been Calculated wholly for the Infantry—I beg leave to refer your Excellency to the General Orders of the 18th of January last, in which a Lieut. Colonel and Major of Cavalry are entitled to two Servants each without Arms—And all the Captains, Subalterns and Staff Officers are entitled to one Servant a piece without arms—As by the new System of Issuing provision Servants without Arms are not intitled to draw provisions, Your Excellency will readily perceive that unless some further provision is made permiting Servants to Draw provisions or Their Officers to receive their Subsistance Money, Great Injury will be done to this Class of Officers—I am desired to request your Excellency would please to take measures to redress this inconvenience, which I am convinced has Originated thro’ inattention to the above mentioned Orders.

Lieut. Col. Jameson has a desire to pay a visit to his Friends in Virginia this Winter, and to settle some public accounts—This Journey cannot be performed without detaining the other field Officers with the Regt the whole of the time—as Lieut. Colonel Jameson has not been into Virginia these three years, and the whole of my Regt having got settled in their Winter Cantoonments, I have confered with my field Officers on the Subject, who hope your Excellecy would Consider these Circumstances and permit Col. Jameson to be absent for two or three Months, and not Oblige more than one field Officer to be constantly with the Regt—I have the Honor to be with the Greatest Respect Your Excellencys most obt and most Humbe servt

Elisha Sheldon Col. 2d L.D.

DLC: Papers of George Washington.

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