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Encourag’d by your kindly mentioning my name in your Letters to several Gentlemen this way I now take the liberty of writing to you. A number of the Generals desir’d me to act as engineer and said that when the delegates from the Continental Congress came here the matter should be settl’d—myself as cheif engineer with the rank and pay of Colonel and a Lt. Col. Putnam as second also with the...
I arriv’d here last saturday morning and immediately made inquiry whether Colo. Read had done any thing in the buissness with which he was charg’d—I found his Stay had been short during which time the Committee that sit during the recess of Congress could not be gotten together so that he went away without being able to forward the matter—The Committee met Yesterday and after having consider’d...
I arriv’d here Yesterday & made preparation to go over the lake this morning but General Schuyler reaching here before day prevents my going over for an hour or two. He has given me a list of Stores on the other side from which I am enabled to send an Inventory of those which I intend to forward to Camp —The Garriso⟨n⟩ at Ticonderoga is so weak, The conveyance from the fort to the landing is...
A List of Stores to be convey’d to Camp At Cambridge from Ticonderoga 12 18 pounders—Iron  1 do—brass  2 13 Inch Iron Mortars  1 7 do  1 6½ do  2 do  2 Howitz. 1 8¼ Inch } Iron
I returnd from Ticonderoga to this place on the 15th instant & brought with me the Cannon &c. It having taken nearly the time I conjecturd it would to transport them here —It is not easy to conceive the difficulties we have had in getting them over the lake owing to the advanced Season of the Year & contrary winds—three days ago it was very uncertain whether we could have gotten them over...
List of Mortars and Cannon brought from Ticonderoga Decr 10th 1775. Mortars  Diameter of the bore   Length Inches Feet Inches  2 Cohorns  5 7/10   1   4  4 do  4 1/2 Brass   1   1  1 Mortar  8 1/2   2  1 do  7 1/2
I did myself the honor to address your Excellncy from Fort George on the 17 Ult.—I then was in hopes that we should have been able to have had the Cannon at Cambridge by this time the want of Snow detain’d us some days & now a cruel thaw, hinders from Crossing Hudsons River which we are oblig’d to do four times from Lake George to this Town—the first severe night will make the Ice on the river...
Agreable to your Excellencys Instructions I tarried at Cambridge ’till all the Ordnance & Stores in my department were on the way to this place, which to my great mortification was not till the 14th instant—The detention was owing to the Zeal of the General Assembly which promis’d more than their activity could perform —In my passing thro’ Providence Governor Cook & a number of the principal...
In consequence of your Excellencys directions I am employ’d in looking at and getting the necessary information Respecting this harbour in which I shall Spare no pains. I mention’d to Your Excellency Newport Harbour, which in Conjunction with this will when fortified afford a safe retreat to the American Navy or their prizes in any Wind that blows; they are equally convenient for Ships coming...
I did myself the honor to address you sometime ago and soon after it I sat out upon a Journey to New York Ticonderoga &c: whilst I was upon my Journey your kind Letter came to Cambridge but by some mischance it was not till lately I had the pleasure to receive it. I blush at what you must have thought of my negligence. I am much oblig’d to you for the favorable opinion you are pleas’d to...
Your Excellency will please to observe by the above summary that there are now mounted and fit for action in this City and the neighbouring posts one hundred and twenty one heavy and light Cannon. To each Cannon it will be necessary to have ten men including the mortar and contingent Services. this would make twelve hundred an[d] ten men. we have in the regiment six hundred officers included,...
From a view of the present important contest with Great Britain it appears that the war is but in its infancy. To carry it on with vigour and success a well regulated and numerous body of Artillery will be necessary. The present number of officers and men of the Regiment of Artillery here are not sufficient for the posts in and round about this City. To supply this deficiency a number of men...
Mr. Paine has done me the honor to write to me on the subject of casting cannon, in consequence of which Mr. Byers a Cannon founder from this place has proceeded to Philadelphia. I take the liberty to beg he may be set to work immediately and if upon a large scale the advantages must be proportionate. As every hint to a Gentleman in Acting in your important Station may be attended with good...
I understood that some few Cannon were to be taken from Mount Washington for Kings Bridge for the present—we find great difficulty in procuring the Carriages for General Fellowss encampment—the Greatest part of which I hope will be Completed to day and tomorrow after which we will turn our whole endevors to Complete those for Kings Bridge. I am with Great Respect Your Excellencys Most Obt &...
I received your favor by the post for which please to accept my thanks. I hope the Copper you mentioned will be purchas’d as speedily as possible, as it appears to me to be matter of the utmost consequence. I have purchas’d about two tons but this is nothing equal to what I wish was collected. We ought at least to have enough to cast an hundred Mortars, Howitzers, and feild peices. A numerous...
Thro’ the hurry and confusion of one retreat after another I have omitted to answer your last favor. You are pleas’d to desire a list of the Officers from Massachusetts Bay noting such as bid fair to rise superior to the commonality. I have endevor’d to procure the whole list but in vain. The General sometime since order’d a list to be given in of the Officers of evry Regiment in Order to go...
Agreable to your directions, we view’d the hill, East of Mount Washington, & the camp in general, & beg leave to make the following report Viz. That the highest part of said hill, be secured by a fort, principally made of the timber now standing there, strengthened with a good abattis, form’d of the tops of the trees, which are to be cut down; And that on the North part of the hill, a redoubt...
After my Letter to General Greene from Springfield of the 26th of January I sat out for this place in order to provide such materials as were necessary to carry on the various branches connected with the Laboratory and ordnance establishment. Upon my arrival here I was much surpriz’d at the very extrordinary bounty offer’d by this state for Recruits for the service. I wrote to General Greene...
It is a long time since I have had the pleasure of a Line from you. I was in hopes to have seen you when I went to Boston but you had previously set out for Congress and I miss’d you on the road. Since my return from thence the duties of my department have taken up the whole of my time, which together with the fear of trespassing on your more important engagements has prevented my writing to...
I am obliged to you for your two favors, one of the 25 Ultimo and the other of the 6 instant both of which I have received. I know not in what condition the Furnace at Salisbury is, but, from the reports which I have had of the Ore, I should suppose they must be bungling workmen indeed if they do not succeed. Shall I enquire into the management of it, and, if practicable, endeavor to get some...
A Resolution of Congress of the 31 ultimo has been shewn to me by some French Officers attached to the Corps of Artillery under my command, ordaining that all Officers of Artillery engaged by Mr Deane in France shall take rank in the American Artillery according to the dates of their brevet commissions in the French service. I believe the Congress did not sufficiently consider the consequences...
It is the opinion of the subscriber that the Battery on Fort Island ought to have an additional work thrown up upon its left, and Garrison’d with 12 pieces heavy cannon, 150. Cannoniers, and half as many assistants, with 500. Infantry. Red Bank to be contracted so as to have 5 or 6 Cannon on the land side, and as many heavy towards the river; to prevent any Ships coming up the Channel leading...
Estimate of Ordnance, Arms, and Stores necessary for the Army of the United States for the Campaign of the year 1778, supposing it to consist of Forty thousand Men. Battering Train of Cannon, Mortars, &ca Iron Cannon 30 18 Pounders } On Travelling Carriages—6 spare ones for the 12 Prs and 6 for the 18 Prs 30 12 Do Iron Mortars 12 13 Inch. } With Beds Complete—3 spare beds to the 13, and 5 to...
To his Excellency George Washington, Esquire General and Commander in Chief of the Armies of the United States. The Representation of James Knox, a Captain in the Eighth Virginia Regiment sheweth That some time in July last he received of the Continent a considerable Sum of Money for the purpose of paying the Wages and arrears of pay due to the Officers and Soldiers that were under his Command...
I exceedingly lament my want of experience and ability to fill properly the important Station in which I am, and I am more particularly distress’d when such important Questions are refer’d to my decission as those which your Excellency gave us in charge the last evening. The happiness or misery of the people of America may be the consequence of a right or erroneous judgement. Much lately has...
Your Excellency last evening referr’d to your General Officers the consideration of the position proper for Winter Quarters, and order’d us to give our opinions respectively on that subject. I shall be concise in my opinion, establishing the proposition that Winter Quarters are indispensably necessary for the army in order to give it that rest and refreshment of which it stands much in need;...
I receiv’d your Excellencys orders to give my sentiments “upon the advisability of making a Winters Campaign, and Practicability of an attack upon Philadelphia, with the aid of a considerable body of militia to be assembl’d at an appointed time & place” —Were it probable that Sir Wm Howes destruction would be the consequence of a Winters Campaign I would most chearfully give my voice and...
Memorandum of sundry matters necesary to be done in the ordnance departments. 1. All the Artificers at Carlile and Springfield to be enlisted during the War or pleasure of Congress—The whole to be on the same establishment, as to pay, rations, &c.—and to form ten Companies—From these the Artillery of the Armies to be supplied with artificers for the field. 2. The laboratory Companies at...
The following hints are humbly submitted to the consideration of your Excellency. The necessity of recruiting the Army is so very obvious, that there cannot be the least doubt but Congress will take the most speedy and effectual methods to induce the respective States to furnish their quotas of men, in such season that they may be collected and disciplind, before the Campaign opens. The mode...
I shall take particular care with respect to the Gun screws, and if those imported should not be sufficient they shall be made. The Artillery Artificers will make the cover’d ammunition Waggens and travelling forges. I expect they will be able at Carlile and Springfield to make 200 ammunition Waggons by the Spring which in addition to those we alredy have will be nearly sufficent. I have given...
I have consulted with his Excellency Governor Clinton on the best mode of transporting the Cannon from Albany to Pennsylvania. He agrees with me that they will remain perfectly Safe at Albany untill next Spring; and when the ice shall break up in the river, which will be some time in March, to have them brought down by water to New Windsor; and thence across the Country to Pennsylvania. I have...
I wrote your Excellency from Poughkeepsie, that as it was not probable the Train of Artillery at Albany would be wanted in Pennsylvania this winter it had better rest at present in Albany, and when the river opened in the Spring to be transported by water to New Windsor, and from thence across the country; also, that there was a report it had been, or was about to be, sent to New England....
I wrote to your Excellency from Springfield concerning the Cannon which were sent from Albany to Farmington in Connecticut, and that I had determin’d to wait your further directions about them, as I suppos’d Genl Gates must have had some particular object in view by ordering them to that place. The greater part of the Cannon that arriv’d at Portsmouth have been brought to this Town by Water,...
I receiv’d your Excellencys two Letters one of the 15th and the other of the 21 ultimo. I have given your Excellencys directions about the arms: There are in this Town and the Magazines at Springfield between 6 & 7000 new arms, I dont know the precise number but beleive it to be somewhere thereabouts, I propose to send on to Pensylvania 4000, the others will be scarcely sufficient to arm the...
In the conversation which I had the honor of having lately with your Excellency, you informed me that there appeared to be three methods to open the ensuing campaign, and directed me to consider and report my opinion of each, with the reasons on which it was founded. The first was—To remain in the present Camp, receive the expected recruits, for the Continental Battalions, discipline the Army,...
I received your Excellency’s Letter of this morning respecting the probable evacuation of Philadelphia by the enemy. The peices of Artillery with the ammunition belonging to them now in Camp will be completed with horses and Geers so as to be mov’d in a day or two. I must depend on the Quarter Master General for Horses and some Waggons to move the Spare Ammunition, and he will be very soon...
Artillery Park [ Valley Forge ] June 12, 1778 . Requests discharge of “Mr. Le Brune a second Lieutenant.” ALS , RG 93, Miscellaneous Records, National Archives.
I feel myself so embarrassed, in the duties of the Department of which I have the honor to be the head, by the Regulations of Congress of the 12th Feby last, that I beg the favor of your Excellency to represent the matter to that honorable Body for further consideration. The awkward situation in which I am, without any of the powers appertaining to the rank of Commanding Officer of...
In compliance with your Excellency’s request of the last evening I shall consider and briefly give my opinion on the following questions. “Whether any enterprize ought to be undertaken against the Enemy in Philadelphia in their present circumstances”? The principles of operations proper to be adopted by us in our present circumstances being taken up and pretty fully discussed last evening by...
I shall give my opinion on the subjects propos’d by your Excellency to your General Officers with as much brevity as they will admit. The first is. Whether a movement of the greater part of this Army to the Eastward under the present information and circumstances will be eligible? I cannot see the propriety of such a measure at present, or that it could be warranted from the State of...
[ Fredericksburg, New York ] October 12, 1778 . States desire of Captain-Lieutenant Daniel Gano, Second Continental Artillery, to resign. ALS , RG 93, Miscellaneous Records, National Archives.
I have considered the information which your Excellency on the 16th Instant was pleased to give to the Board of General Officers, and the propositions then given for their consideration and opinions. The first query or proposition, vizt “Whether it will be prudent and adviseable to make a Detatchment of the Main Army towards Boston, and if so of what force?” was so fully discussed at the time...
I beg pardon for troubling your Excellency with the inclosd, which, if you think proper I request the favor of your sending to Congress. I am decided in my intentions of leaving so ineligible a situation as I have been in all the past Campaign. I wish to continue in the service of my Country untill the present contest is at an end. But I find it an indispensable duty owing to myself not to do...
As there is much preparation to make, and many matters to arrange, in the Ordnance Department in order to take the field the next campaign with advantage, I take the liberty to lay before your Excellency the situation in which I am, and beg, if you think proper, that you would lay the same before the Honorable Congress for their consideration. Some time last May I did myself the honor to...
The Corps of Artillery being raised in different States upon the same principles as the sixteen additional battalions, labor under great difficulty in obtaining of recruits for the Continental bounty of twenty dollars. The service demands the Battalions of Artillery to be complete, but under the present circumstances it is impracticable. There are four Battalions of Artillery consisting of...
Agreable to your Excellencys request Genl Greene, The Adjutant General, and myself, met yesterday, on the subject of Amorers, the better keeping of cartridges &c. I shewed them the inclos’d proposals, which I drew up at Philadelphia and presented to the board of War who approved of the same. I likewise shewed them to General Steuben who in consequence wrote the Letter and regulations of Which...
I have just received your Excellency’s directions concerning the Beacon dated 23d instant. I will have it executed immediately and inform your Excellency of the Spot. I have only one Copy of the late Arrangement of the ordnance department which I have lent to an officer who is gone out. I will get it from him and send it to head Quarters. The Corps of Artillery being so dispers’d it will take...
I had the honor to deliver your Excellency a paper in Philadelphia, urging the necessity of recruiting the Corps of Artillery and completing its numbers to the establishment, which your Excellency gave to the Committee of Congress. I was in hopes the necessity was so apparent that the honorable Congress would have pointed out some effectual methods to supply the deficiencies before the opening...
49Council of War, 10 April 1779 (Washington Papers)
At a Council of War held at Head Quarters Middle Brook April 10th 1779. Present The Commander in Chief[,] Major Genls Sullivan[,] Greene[,] Ld Stirling[,] St Clair[,] D’Kalb, [Brigadier Generals] Smallwood[,] Knox[,] Woodford. The Commander in Chief states to the Council, that since the last meeting of Commissioners on the subject of an exchange of Prisoners, the result of which is contained...
The Captain-Lieutenants of Artillery have desired me to forward the enclosed letter to your Excellency. It respects their pay, which, by a resolution of Congress last April or May, was reduced from 40 to 33 1/3 dollars per month, without any reason assigned for its being done. The Committee of Arrangement, when at White Plains in September last, assured them that they would lay their...