George Washington Papers
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General Orders, 12 March 1780

General Orders

Head-Quarters Morristown sunday March 12th 1780.

Parole Temperance— C. Signs Tattoo. Time.

The regimental Cloathiers of Hazen’s Spencer’s,1 Angell’s Jackson’s, Webb’s, Sherburne’s and Livingston’s regiments are to attend tomorrow morning at 8 ôclock at the Cloathier General’s store in Morristown to receive their respective proportions of cloathing—Brigadier General Knox will be pleased to appoint a person to attend at the same time and place to receive the proportion of cloathing for the brigade of Artillery.

The Court of Enquiry whereof Colonel Spencer is Presidt having made strict examination into the conduct of Captain Van Dyck respecting the death of a Negro soldier belonging to Captain Bernard’s company in Colonel Wyllys’s regiment, report as follows, (Vizt).

“The Court considering the evidence are fully of opinion that Captain Van Dyck being in the line of his duty, his conduct on the occasion was highly ju[s]tifiable.”

The Commander in Chief approves the judgment of the court, and the Court is dissolved.2

Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

Adj. Gen. Alexander Scammell’s orderly book entry for this date includes an additional general order: “A Fatigue Party of a Corporal and Six Men to be sent from the second Pennsylvania Brigade to Qr Master [Joseph] Lewis’s Tomorrow” (orderly book, 17 Oct. 1779–22 March 1780, DNA: RG 93, Orderly Books, 1775–1783, vol. 33).

1GW’s aide-de-camp Tench Tilghman wrote Board of War secretary Benjamin Stoddert from Morristown on this date: “Inclosed you have a Return of Colo. Spencers Regt agreeable to the Resolve of March 15th 1779—The Colonel wishes that the several States to which the Officers and Men respectively belong may be furnished with a transcript of their names, without which, they derive no Benefit from the provisions recommended by the Act” (DLC:GW). The congressional resolution of 15 March 1779 apportioned “all officers, non-commissioned officers and soldiers” from units such as Col. Oliver Spencer’s Additional Continental Regiment to “the quotas of the several states to which they did or shall respectively belong when so commissioned or inlisted” and made those states responsible for their support (JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds. Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789. 34 vols. Washington, D.C., 1904–37. description ends , 13:316–18; see also John Jay to GW, 15 March 1779, and n.1, and GW to Jay, 24 March 1779, and n.1).

2GW had authorized this court of inquiry in the general orders for 7 March 1780 upon Capt. Abraham C. Van Dyke’s request to investigate an incident that had occurred “on the night” of 14 January.

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