George Washington Papers
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To George Washington from Colonel Moses Hazen, 26 January 1780

From Colonel Moses Hazen

Eliza. Town [N.J.] 26. Jany [1780] 3.OClock A.M.

Dr Genl

The Enemy have I am afraid Surprised this Post; They have taken Major Eccleson, several other Officers, and a Number of the Detachment, burnt the meeting House. Town House, and the House at D. Harts, Point and retired immediately. They came to this Place about 12.OClock, and as I am inform’d, did not stay more than an Hour at most—I have seen Fires at or about Newark, from which I judge they have been at that Place also1—As soon as I am able to collect a more particular Account, I shall forward it. I am your E⟨xcelle⟩ncy’s most Ob⟨edt ser⟩vant

Moses Hazen

N.B. My Letter which accompanies this was wrote before the Alarm.2


ALS, DLC:GW. The cover of the letter is marked “Express.

1Lt. Col. Abraham Van Buskirk of the New Jersey Volunteers, stationed on Staten Island, led the attack on Elizabeth. Maj. Charles Lumm of the 44th Regiment and commandant of Paulus Hook, N.J., led the attack on Newark, N.J. (see Baurmeister, Revolution in America, description begins Carl Leopold Baurmeister. Revolution in America: Confidential Letters and Journals, 1776–1784, of Adjutant General Major Baurmeister of the Hessian Forces. Translated and annotated by Bernhard A. Uhlendorf. New Brunswick, N.J., 1957. description ends 340, and The Royal Gazette [New York], 29 Jan.). GW had warned Hazen about the possibility of such a two-pronged attack (see GW to Hazen, 25 Jan.), but Hazen received the letter too late (see Hazen to GW, 29 Jan).

The Royal Gazette of 29 Jan. reported that Buskirk’s detachment “moved from Staten Island early in the night, and got into Elizabeth-town without being discovered, between the hours of ten and eleven” and met with “little ⟨r⟩esistance.” The same issue of The Royal Gazette explained that Lumm’s force “marched from Powles-Hook about 8 at night … and passing the Rebel Patroles upon the banks of the Passaic, reached the town of Newark unperceived by the enemy about a quarter of an hour later than Colonel Buskirk’s arrival in Elizabeth-town. Small parties were instantly posted to masque the principal avenues of the town, and Major Lumm seized possession of the academy, which the rebels had converted into a barrack.” The rebels, the paper reported, attempted only “a momentary defence.”

2Hazen is referring to his first letter to GW of this date.

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