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Your Favour of the second Instant has lain by me, I suppose these Eighteen days, but I fear I shall often have occasion to make Apologies for Such omissions, which will never happen from Want of Respect, but I fear very often for Want of Time. Your Reasoning, to prove the Equity, and the Policy of making Provision for the Unfortunate Officer, or soldier, is extreamly just, and cannot be...
From your Brigade (& principally from the Riffle Regiment) detach as many Men as will be sufficient to effect the purpose mentioned in the following Resolution of the Provencial Congress of New York. “In Provencial Congress New York June 24. 1776 Whereas Information has been given to this Congress that Sundry Persons on Nassau Island disaffected & inimical to the American Cause are in Arms in...
Your Favour of the 14 of July is before me. I am happy to find your Sentiments concerning the Rewards of the Army, and the Promotion of Officers So nearly agreable to mine. I wish the general sense here was more nearly agreable to them. Time I hope will introduce a proper sense of Justice in those Cases where it may for Want of Knowledge and Experience be wanting. The New England Collonells,...
Letter not found: to Maj. Gen. Nathanael Greene, 24 Oct. 1776. Greene’s letter to GW of this date is docketed: “Genl Greene 24th Octr 1776. Ansd same day.”
Letter not found: to Maj. Gen. Nathanael Greene, 31 Oct. 1776. Greene’s first letter to GW of 29 Oct. is docketed “An[swere]d 31st.”
The Enemy after having Incamp’d in full view of us, and reconnoitring our Situation for several days thought proper on Tuesday Morning to decamp. they have bent their course to Dob⟨bs⟩ Ferry Inclining towards Kings bridge. what their real designs are, we, as yet, are strangers to; but conjecturing that too little is yet done by General Howe to go into Winter Quarters, we conceive that Fort...
The late passage of the 3 Vessells up the North River (which we have just received Advice of) is so plain a proof of the inefficacy of all the Obstructions we have thrown into it that I cannot but think it will fully justify a Change in the Disposition which has been made. If we cannot prevent Vessells passing up, and the Enemy are possessed of the surrounding Country, what valuable purpose...
Since my Letters of y⟨e⟩sterday two Deserters have got in from the Enemy (at Dobbs’s Ferry) who relate m⟨a⟩ny circumstances in proof of the Enemys Intention of crossing into the Jerseys at or near Dobbs’s Ferry under cover of a Cannonade from their Shipping. These Deserters say that Boats were to have been brought up (from New York they add, but possibly they may be brought from the Sound by...
Letter not found: to Maj. Gen. Nathanael Greene, 18 Feb. 1777. In his letter of 20 Feb. Greene informed GW that “your favor of the 18th came to hand last Evening.”
I had, last Evening the Pleasure of yours of March 3. by your Brother, to whom in his Business to this Place I shall give all the Assistance in my Power. In whose favour the Ballance of Letters lies, I cant Say: but if I am in debt, in Point of Numbers it must be because Some of my Remittances have miscarried. I am not yet entirely convinced, that We are playing a desperate Game, tho I must...
The necessity of having the Congress well inform’d of many matters essential to the well being of this Army, and the Impracticability of doing this fully by Letter, have induced me to request you (who intimately know our Circumstances) to repair immediately to Philadelphia for this purpose. at the same time to know how we are to be supplied with Arms and many other Articles of wch we are...
I was last night honoured with a Letter from Congress of the 17th Inst. covering Sundry Resolutions. They have determined to adhere to those formed sometime ago respectg Lt Colo. Campbell & the Hessian Feild Officers; Yet I am not able to conclude certainly, whether they mean to hold them as Sureties for the future safety & good treatment of Genl Lee ’till his Exchange is really effected, or...
I am again called upon for another meeting between Colo. Walcott & Mr Harrison to negotiate the Cartel—so long the Subject of Correspondence between Genl Howe & myself & those two Gentn. Without incurring further charge of delay, I could not defer their interview longer than next Friday morning; I therefore request that you will transmit me by Express, who may arrive here early enough on...
In considering a Letter from the General, sometime ago, in the Board of War, it was agreed to report to Congress a Resolution, approving of the Laboratory at Sprin g field, and such a Report was made, but upon some Opposition to it, it was ordered to lye on the Table, where it has lain ever since. I will, move to have it taken up and determined. Some Gentlemen will oppose it, par­ ticularly...
Yours of the 27th of April I am to acknowledge. I cannot concur with you in Sentiment because the Enimy did not go to Philadelphia last December that they had no intention then or since of going there. I am of opinion if the Enemy could have got over the Delaware immediately after our Army crosd it, it would have been agreeable to their wishes. Had they effected it before the Junction of our...
Yours of the 2d Instant, came duly to hand. The Indifference of the People about recruiting the Army, is a Circumstance, which ought to make Us, consider what are the Causes of it. It is not, merely the Melancholly, arising from the unfortunate Events of the last Campaign, but the Small Pox, and above all the unhappy State of our Finances, which occasion this Evil. There are other...
Yours of the 7th. was brought me this Morning. My Meaning was that if the Conduct of our Army, had depended on me, I should have taken more Pains to have obtained exact Information of the Enemies Numbers, and our own, and should have considered every Indication of the Enemies Intentions of coming to Philadelphia more particularly. Altho, there is no doubt that Congress have Authority to direct...
In your ride to and from Peeks Kill, I would have you make the best observations that time and Circumstances will admit, upon the Country, and point out, at your return, such places for posts of Communication, as you shall conceive necessary. Determine upon the propriety of having a Post at Pompton, examine the Works throwing up at that place, and give such directions to General Heard or...
Letter not found: to Maj. Gen. Nathanael Greene, 23 May 1777. Greene wrote GW on 24 May : “Your Excellencies favor of Yesterday this moment came to hand.”
During the civil Wars in Rome, in the Time of Sylla, and young Marius, after the Death of the Elder Marius, Sylla commanded one Army against Mithridates King of Pontus, and Fimbria another. Both were in Arms against the Same foreign Enemy: but Sylla and Fimbria were equally Enemies to each other, commanding different Armies in the Service of different Parties at Rome, which were disputing...
I have ordered the Assistant Commissary at this place, to repair immediately to Camp. It is the peculiar misfortune of this Army to have, generally speaking, the head[s] of the different departments always absent when they are most wanted—Two months was I labouring, as hard as a man could, to get the Comy Genl to this place, & had scarce accomplished it before the Congress ordered him to...
Yours of 28 Ultimo is before me. It is certain that Religion and Morality, have no less obligation upon Armies, than upon Cities and contribute no less to the Happiness of Soldiers than of Citizens. There is one Principle of Religion, which has contributed vastly to the Excellence of Armies, who had very little else of Religion or Morality, the Principle I mean is the Sacred obligation of...
I never before took hold of a Pen, to write to my Friend General Green, without Pleasure, but I think myself obliged to do it now upon a Subject that gives me a great deal of Pain. The Three Letters from, the Generals Sullivan, Green and Knox, have interrupted the Deliberations of Congress, and given many of the Members of it much Uneasiness. They thought themselves bound, in Honour and...
Chester [ Pennsylvania ] August 1, 1777. Orders Greene to hold men in readiness to march and to give the necessary orders to quartermaster general and commissary general respecting provisions and forage. States that British fleet has departed from the Delaware. Df , in writing of H, George Washington Papers, Library of Congress. Although H’s crossed-out signature can be seen on the draft, this...
We have not recieved any certain intelligence that the Fleet have got within the Capes. By the last accounts they were beating in, the Wind unfavorable; It was supposed they would get in about three OClock yesterday Evening. I would wish you to collect and bring up your rear, as soon as may be, to German Town or to proper Grounds contiguous to it where the Troops are to remain untill further...
I have just received information by express that the enemys fleet have disappeared from the Capes yesterday morning about eight OClock. This unexpected event makes it necessary to reverse our disposition and I have accordingly sent orders to Sullivan’s division, and the two other brigades on the other side the Delaware to return and recross the North River. You are immediately to complete your...
Letter not found: to Major General Nathanael Greene, 18 Aug. 1777. In his letter to Lt. Col. Holtzendorff of 18 Aug. , GW says: “I inclose you a letter to General Greene, informing him, that I have attached you to his division.”
I am favd with yours of Yesterday Afternoon from Burlington. As you have crossed the River, an attack upon the Enemy’s detachment if it can be made with success, would be a most desirable object. But I must leave the propriety of it entirely to your own judgment. I have heard nothing more of Glovers Brigade than that they were advancing down the Road from Morris Town; I sent an Express to meet...
I have received your Letter of this days date—it does not appear from any account worthy of credit—that any part of the Detachment which cross’d the Delaware under Lord Cornwallis has return’d to Philadelphia. I am inclined therefore to wish that you would advance to meet it as much in force as possible—and that for this purpose you would use every means to hasten the junction of Glover’s...
If you have not moved from Mount Holley when this comes to hand, I wish you to wait there till you see Colo. Meade, who will set off immediately charged with some important matters which I thought it improper to commit to paper. This However you are to understand under this restriction—That I do not mean to prevent you a moment from prosecuting any Object you have immediately in view that...
Colo. Mead delivered me Yours this Morning as I was upon my way to reconnoitre the Enemy’s Lines from the West side of Schuylkill. I had a full view of their left and found their works much stronger than I had reason to expect from the Accounts I had received. The Enemy have evacuated Carpenters Island and seem to be about doing the same by province Island. Accounts from the City say Lord...
My Letter ⟨of⟩ yester night (wro⟨te af⟩ter I returnd from a view of ⟨the Ene⟩my’s Lines from the other side Schuylkill) I must refer to. Our Situation, as you justly obs⟨erve, is⟩ distressing, from a variety ⟨of irreme⟩diable causes; but more espe⟨ci⟩ally from the impracticabillity of ⟨an⟩swering the expectations of the world without running hazards w⟨hich no⟩ military principles can j⟨ustify;...
Capt. Duplessis has just delivered me yours of this Morning from Burlington. Every account from Philada confirms the Report that the Enemy mean to make a speedy Move. I shall not be disappointed if they come out this Night or very early in the Morning. You will therefore push forward, the Rear Brigades with all possible expedition and the Moment that the Troops and Baggage have all passed, let...
The good People of the State of Pennsylvania living in the vicinity of Philadelphia & near the Delaware River having sufferd much by the Enemy carrying off their property without allowing them any Compensation, thereby distressing the Inhabitants—supplying their own Army & enabling them to protract the cruel & unjust war that they are now waging against these States—And whereas by recent...
I have received your Letter of yesterday and have given instructions to the Quarter Master to supply your demand of Waggons, by sending forward as many as can be spared from the Camp and pressed in the neighborhood—however I would not have your exertions abated, by a Reliance on Success in this quarter. As it is impossible to secure the Hay on the Jersey Shore, for our own use it is certainly...
Letter not found: to Maj. Gen. Nathanael Greene, 17 Feb. 1778. John Laurens docketed Greene’s letter to GW of 16 Feb. “Answd 17th.”
I have received your two favors of yesterday and to day—there has been no considerable desertion from this camp to my knowledge within a few days past, nor have the Enemy made any number of Prisoners on the other side of Schuylkil; the persons said to have been paraded in the city, were perhaps defenceless Inhabitants that have been seized upon by the traiterous parties who style themselves...
200,000 Bushels of Grain and as much Hay as can be drawn in from both sides of Delaware, to be lodged on the banks of Delaware from Trenton upwards. 200,000 Bushels of Grain and as much Hay as can be procured, at different posts on Schuylkill. 200,000 Bushels of Grain and as much Hay as can be procured within 40 Miles of the Camp, to be fixed at different posts from the Head of Elk to Camp....
We have to request, you will order a couple of very good teams to be got ready to proceed to the enemy’s lines for General Lee’s baggage. He is to come out on parole, on Sunday morning. You will judge when they ought to set out from here—suppose tomorrow noon, so as to get in the neighbourhood of Vandeering’s Mill by tomorrow night. When they are ready to set out tomorrow let them make report...
[ Valley Forge ] May 5, 1778 . Reviews situation in Europe and discusses possible enemy movements. Df , in writing of H, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress.
In answer to your favour of the 3d I give it clearly as my opinion, that no change has happened in our affairs, which will justify the least relaxation in our military preparations and consequently that the provisions you have been, and are, making, in your department, ought to be continued in their fullest vigor and extent. Whether any, or what change may happen, in the local situation of the...
I am sadly distressed for want of a good saddle &c; and such is my situation, that I have no opportunity of procuring for myself. The one I got by your order the other day was of a coarser kind that would only do for my servant. As you are in the way of procuring matters of this kind, you will oblige me much, if you will give orders for purchasing a good saddle bridle holsters &c. for me....
From many concurrent circumstances it appears that the enemy are preparing to evacuate Philadelphia, whether their design is to withdraw altogether from the Continent or to concenter their forces at new york cannot be ascertained—in case the latter shd be the case it will be proper to have provision of forage made on the road to the No. River for such body of Troops as may be ordered to march...
[ Valley Forge ] May 17, 1778 . Instructs Greene to prepare for possible movement of Army and to set up magazines along routes to North River. Df , in writings of Richard Kidder Meade and H, George Washington Papers, Library of Congress.
Every piece of intelligence from Philadelphia makes me think it more & more probable, that the Enemy are preparing to evacuate it—Whether they intend to leave the Continent, or only go to some other part of it must be uncertain. There are some reasons that induce a suspicion they may intend for New York. In any case it is absolutely necessary, we should be ready, for an instant movement of the...
Inclosed is a copy of the establishment of the Marechaussé, as passed in Congress the 20th Ulto —This Corps is to be armed and accoutred in the manner of Light Dragoons—You will therefore provide with all possible expedition sixty three horses, with proper Saddles and bridles—as the nature of the duty will principally require patroling within the distance of a mile from the pickets, the horses...
[ Valley Forge ] June 8, 1778 . Instructs Greene to find a new camp site. Df , in writing of H, George Washington Papers, Library of Congress.
As the Removal of the Troops under Genl Smallwoods Command will leave our Stores at the head of Elk exposed, and their only protection will be such as they may derive from the Militia of the Country You are without loss of time to have every thing of value in your magazines thereabouts, transported to the most convenient place for the purposes of the army. I am &c. As Genl Smallwood with his...
The very sickly situation of the camp, and the danger of its becoming still more alarming makes it improper we should remain longer on the present ground. You will be pleased in the course of this day, to reconnoitre a new camp, with the aid of the chief Engineer. The object, principally to be attended to, is a wholesome situation, convenient for the accommodation of the men, well provided...
I cannot at this time ⟨(h⟩aving many People round me, & ⟨Lett⟩ers by the Southern Post to read) go fully in⟨to⟩ the cont⟨ents⟩ of yours of this date, ⟨but⟩ with ⟨ the ⟩ same truth I have ever done, I still ass⟨ur⟩e you, that you retain the same hold of my affections that I have professed to allow you—With equal truth I can, and do assure you⟨,⟩ that I have ever been happy in your friendship, &...