George Washington Papers
Documents filtered by: Author="Washington, George" AND Correspondent="Washington, George" AND Correspondent="Lee, Henry Jr."
sorted by: date (ascending)

From George Washington to Major Henry Lee, Jr., or the Officer Commanding His Corps at Burlington, N.J., 30 March 1780

To Major Henry Lee, Jr., or the Officer Commanding His Corps at Burlington, N.J.

Head Quarters Morris Town March 30th 1780.

Sir

You will be pleased, upon the receipt of this, to take the most expeditious measures for putting the whole Corps both Horse and Foot in readiness to march. If you move, your destination will be South Carolina. The Horse will go the whole way by land—the Foot will go down Chesapeak Bay by Water and meet the Horse at Petersburg—As soon as you have given the necessary orders at Burlington you had best repair to Philada and apply to the Board of War, to whom I have written on the subject, for the Articles wanting to equip the Corps for so long a march1—Be pleased to acknowledge this—send your answer to the Qr Mr at Trenton; who will forward it to me.2 I am Sir Yr most obt Servt.

Df, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW. GW enclosed the recipient’s version of this letter in one written on the same date to Moore Furman, deputy quartermaster general at Trenton. GW’s letter to Furman reads: “Be pleased to forward the inclosed to the Officer commanding Maj: Lees Corps at Burlington, by Express” (Df, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW).

2Capt. John Rudulph replied to GW from Burlington on 2 April: “I receiv’d your Excellencies letter of the 30th Instant—shall take the most expeditious measures for puting the corps in readiness to march—I have applied to the board of war for the articles necessary to equip the corps for so long a march as south carolina” (ALS, DLC:GW).

GW then wrote the officer commanding Lee’s corps at Burlington from Morristown on 9 April: “I have recd Capt. Rudulphs favr of the 2d Inst. I have to request you not to lose a moment in commencing your march to south Carolina after your Corps is ready—You will take your Route from the Board of War—I wish you a safe and expeditious march” (Df, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW).

Rank and supply issues delayed the departure of Lee’s corps for the southern department (see Board of War to GW, 3 April, and n.1 to that document; GW to the Board of War, 9 April; Lee to GW, 10 April; and GW to Lee, 13 April; see also Nathanael Greene to GW, 3 April). To meet changing military circumstances, GW first halted the movement south of Lee’s corps and then ordered its return north (see GW to Lee, 20 May; GW to the Board of War, 8 June; and Lee to GW, 11 June, all in DLC:GW). After extensive service in the field, Lee’s corps again departed for the southern department in the fall and reached its new area of operations in early 1781 (see GW to Lee, 22 Oct., and Lee to GW, 25 Oct., both in DLC:GW; see also Lee, War Memoirs description begins Henry Lee. Memoirs of the War in the Southern Department of the United States. New ed. New York, 1869. description ends , 24–32, 212).

Index Entries