Dobbs’s Ferry 19th Jany 1783
Agreable to your Excellency’s Orders containd in a Letter from Colo. Humphries of the 2d Inst forwarded by Mr Merrit I dispatch’d a flagg to Paulus Hook, with Letters to the Commissary of Prisoners in New York, requesting permission for Mr Merrit[’s] admittance for the purpose of furnishing the Prisoners with money &c.—to which I have not yet received a reply—the flagg was obliged to halt one night in the Town of Bergen where the officer was informd that Lord Cornwallis had arrived, a few days past in new York, and a fleet from Charlestown with Troop[s] this was repeated in the morning at Prior’s Mill[.] The Severity of the season & the state of the River closes the door of my former communication, so that I cannot be answerable for the truth of the Story—If it is so it appears if Goverment meant to give his Lordship an opportunity of brushing off the tarnish his arms rece’d in the Campaign of 81 previous to a settlement of a Peace. I have the honor to be Your Excellency’s most obedt Servt
W.S. Smith Lt Colo.
DLC: Papers of George Washington.