George Washington Papers
Documents filtered by: Author="Bowdoin, James" AND Period="Revolutionary War"
sorted by: editorial placement
Permanent link for this document:

To George Washington from James Bowdoin, 26 June 1780

From James Bowdoin

Boston June 26. 1780

Dear Sir

By the Post I had the honour of your Letter of the 14th Instant, And am happy to find that the Plan &c. accompanying my last was in any degree Satisfactory, and may be of use.1 I hope the measures for procuring further intelligence will be effectual.

The loss of Charlestown is unfortunate, and the more so if owing, as is said to be the Case, to a want of provisions. I wish it may be repaired the present Campaign; and that the expected Forces of our Allies, joined with our own, will enable your Excellency to do something more than repair it.

The Papers enclosed will shew the measures our legislature have taken to answer the requisitions made on this state;2 and yr Excellency and the Comtee of Congress, co-operating with you, may be assured, that nothing will be wanting on the part of the Council of this State to carry those measures effectually into execution. You will observe by the Resolution of the 5th Instt, that every person procured for the service therein mentioned is to supply himself with a good Firelock &c.

This clause is vacated by a posterior Resolution (of the 14th) so far as relates to the Firelock & Accoutrements: and for this reason, that the Court apprehended, the Arms stopped from our men the last winter & Spring, when their service expired, would be Sufficient to Supply the men now raising.3 I hope the Court were not mistaken; And that there will be found in the public stores at Head Quarters a Sufficient number for the men.

Fervently wishing Success to the Army of the united States I have the honour to be with the most respectful regard Dear Sir Yr Excy’s most obt hble servt

James Bowdoin

Your Excellency will be pleased to communicate the enclosed Proceedings of the Genl Court to the honorable Comtee of Congress.

ALS, DLC:GW; ADfS, MHi: Bowdoin-Temple Papers.

1Bowdoin is referring to his letter to GW of 31 May.

2In his draft, Bowdoin listed eleven enclosures, each a resolution of the Massachusetts legislature: raising 3,934 men to serve in the state’s Continental line for six months (5 June); raising one quarter of the 3,934 men (23 June); for raising 4,726 militia to serve with the army for three months (22 June); appointing commissioners to receive tax money (14 and 24 June); exempting men drafted under the resolve of 5 June from supplying themselves with arms (14 June); appointing superintendents of purchases (20 June); empowering superintendents to impress cattle (23 June); empowering superintendents to dismiss purchasers (24 June); appointing persons to purchase cattle, rum, and grain (19 June); and empowering Brig. Gen. John Fellows to draw out the militia of his brigade (23 June). All these enclosures are in DLC:GW. The resolve of 24 June appointing commissioners to receive taxes is filed under 15 June.

The Massachusetts Council (with Bowdoin as its correspondent) wrote GW from Boston on 27 June: “Previous to the receipt of the Letter from the Committee of Congress of the 19th inst. inclosing a Copy of Your Excellencys Letter of the same date, The President of Council had forwarded the Resolves of the General Assembly, fully expressive of the Measures taken by us, in Consequence of several Requisitions made on this State with respect to Men & Supplies; We can assure you, no Exertions have been wanting in the General Assembly in complying with the Expectations of the United States, signified to us, by your Excellency or their Delegates in Congress or their Committee of Cooperation, And what is more, we have the high Satisfaction to assure you, that since the distributing the Acts, both for filling our Battalions aiding with our Militia, & for our Monthly Proportion of supplies, we have Reason to believe, That all Ranks of Citizens, are bravely determined to afford the Common Cause their Requested Assistance, in every Respect that the present Campaign may be as successfull as your Excellency can even wish or desire.

“You will see by the Resolves, Springfield is the Rendezvous for the recruits to fill the Battalions, to which they are Marching, or such other place as you may Appoint, Claverack the Destination of the Militia” (LS, DLC:GW; Df, M-Ar). See also GW to the Committee at Headquarters, 19 June, and n.3 to that document.

3GW had prohibited discharged Massachusetts soldiers from carrying their firearms home (see GW to Henry Jackson, 14 Feb.).

Index Entries