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To Alexander Hamilton from Charles Cotesworth Pinckney, 23 January 1800

From Charles Cotesworth Pinckney

Cantonment at Harpers Ferry [Virginia]
January. 23d. 1800.


Your favours of the 7th1 & 8th2 instant enclosing me Lieut Gover’s letter, I received by the last post. I have acted in the same manner as you have in refusing to make terms with Deserters previous to their delivering themselves up. There are three skulking on the Alleghaney Mountain who sent in to me three weeks ago, but I refused to make any stipulations with them while they remained out. I shall endeavour to have the Deserter Lee apprehended. I am glad to find by a letter from the Secretary of War of the 9th instant3 that he has determined that the extra allowance to officers in case of vigorous search & pursuit of Deserters shall not be confined to the regulations of the 19th of December 1798.4

The enclosed letters from Major Freeman5 are on a subject touched on in my last, to wit: double rations.6 Persons going to Fort Johnson call upon him, not upon Capn. Kalteisen,7 of course Major Freeman is at the expence of entertaining them. His cl⟨aim⟩ I think is just—otherwise he will only draw four rations while Captn. Kalteisen draws six. I hope some general regulation will be made on the subject.

I remain with great regard & esteem   your most Obedt. servt.

Charles Cotesworth Pinckney

Major General Hamilton.

LS, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress.

1The draft of this letter is dated January 6, 1800, and is listed in the appendix to this volume. In this letter H enclosed Lieutenant James Triplett’s letter of December 20, 1799, which has not been found, and H’s answer to it of January 6, 1800. In his answer to Triplett, which is also listed in the appendix to this volume, H said that he was referring Triplett’s letter to Pinckney because the “transactions” mentioned by Triplett “had happened within the sphere of Genl. Pinckney’s command.” See also Pinckney to H, January 21, 1800, note 8.

2The draft of this letter is dated January 7, 1800, and is listed in the appendix to this volume. In this letter H wrote: “I send you the enclosed Letter from Lieutt: [Robert] Gover that you may take the necessary steps for apprehending the Deserter which he mentions.” Gover’s letter has not been found. Gover was a lieutenant in the Ninth Regiment of Infantry.

3James McHenry to Pinckney, January 9, 1800 (LS, letterpress copy, James McHenry Papers, Library of Congress.

5William Simmons to Constant Freeman, October 2, November 15, 1799; Freeman to Simmons, October 22, 1799; “Circular to the Artillery Field Officers,” May 15, 1799; Pinckney to Freeman, June 15, 1799; Freeman to Pinckney, December 21, 1799 (copies, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress). This correspondence concerns Freeman’s request for double rations in his capacity as commanding officer of several posts at Charleston, South Carolina, and the refusal of this request by William Simmons, the accountant of the War Department. Freeman was a major in the First Regiment of Artillerists and Engineers.

7Michael Kalteisen of South Carolina was a captain in the First Regiment of Artillerists and Engineers.

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