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[ Philadelphia, March 17, 1783. Letter not found. ] “List of Letters from General Hamilton to General Washington,” Columbia University Libraries. Two letters from H to Washington on March 17, 1783, are listed. One letter is printed in PAH Harold C. Syrett, ed., The Papers of Alexander Hamilton (New York and London, 1961– ). , III, 290–93.
We have halted the troops at this place. The enemy, by our last reports, were four miles from this (that is their rear) and had passed the road which turns off towards South Amboy, which determines their rout towards Shrewsbury. Our reason for halting is the extreme distress of the troops for want of provisions—General Wayne’s detachment is almost starving—and seem both unwilling and unable to...
Inclosed I transmit your Excellency a letter from the Count Destain. He has had the River sounded and finds he cannot enter. He will sail for Rhode Island tomorrow evening; in the mean time he is making demonstrations to deceive the enemy and beget an opinion, that he intends to operate in this quarter. He would sail immediately but he waits the arrival, or to hear, of a frigate which carried...
I wrote to Your Excellency the evening of the 20th by Major Neville. I remained in the neighbourhood of Black Point ’till the afternoon following. The Count had received his expected dispatches from Congress and was to sail, as I mentioned before, the first fair wind. At Brunswick yesterday, Mr Caldwell joined me. He was immediately from the Point and brought intelligence that the fleet got...
We are honored with two letters from Your Excellency of the 10th and 21st; to the contents of which we beg leave to assure you of our strictest attention—That of the 18th is not yet come to hand—it is not improbable it has gone round by Lewis Town, which has occasioned the delay. Col. Hamilton wrote to Your Excellency from Philadelphia acquainti⟨ng⟩ you with our arrival there and our intention...
Letter not found: from Brigadier General Duportail and Lt. Col. Alexander Hamilton, 1 Nov. 1779 . Duportail and Hamilton wrote GW on 8 Nov.: “We hope before this you will have received our two letters of the 26th of October and 1st instant.”
We last night received the honor of Your Excellency’s letter of the 25th of October—On the 26th we had the pleasure of advising you fully of our situation and motives for coming to this place. We have since received no further intelligence of the Count—his operations—or ultimate intentions; on which account and from the late period of the season, we have given over all expectation of any thing...
Your Excellencys letter of the 30th of October reached us yesterday. We hope before this you will have received our two letters of the 26th of October and 1st instant. We have received no late advices from the Southward, which confirms us in the ideas of our last—Major Lee will no doubt have communicated to Your Excellency what he mentions to us, that the enemy are preparing at New York for a...
On our present plan, It appears to me the quantity of ammunition proposed by General Knox for the Artillery is insufficient. A larger consumption may be necessary—The Stone houses in which the enemy may attempt to defend themselves may be obstinate and we should have it in our power by the severity and duration of our fire to bring them to reason. I take the liberty to suggest these matters,...
I duly received your letter of the 14th and shall not fail in conjunction with General St Clair to attend to the military object of it. I am much obliged to your Excellency for the communication of your Southern advises—The enemy are still in the dark about their fleet and army gone that way as we gather from the Commissioners —They pretend to have little European news, though a vessel arrived...
I am extremely sorry your Excellency has been troubled with the affair to which the papers transmitted in your letter of this morning relate. Admitting the possibility of Doctor Gordons not being the author of what I must always call a calumny, and had he not been an irreconcileable enemy to plain dealing, the matter might have been brought to a very easy issue, without the necessity of an...
I have seen the enemy; those in view I calculate at about three thousand—there may be and probably enough are others out of sight—They have sent all their horse to the other side except about fifty or sixty—Their baggage it is agreed on all hands has also been sent across and their wounded—It is not ascertained that any of their infantry have passed to the other side—There are four or five...
You will see by the inclosed we are too late—Arnold went by water to the Vulture—I shall write to General Greene advising him without making a bustle to be in readiness to march and even to detach a Brigade this way for though I do not believe the project will go on, it is possible Arnold has made such dispositions with the Garrison as may tempt the enemy in its present weakness to make the...
Sometime last fall when I spoke to your Excellency about going to the Southward, I explained to you candidly my feelings with respect to military reputation, and how much it was my object to act a conspicuous part in some enterprise that might perhaps raise my character as a soldier above mediocrity. You were so good as to say you would be glad to furnish me with an occasion. When the...
Mr Renselaar who has the direction of the Armory here tells me that the Board of War, write him they are unable to support it any longer, on the present establishment for want of supplies—and propose to him to endeavour to have it carried on by contract. This he declares is impossible—The armory must either continue on the present footing or cease. As far as I understand the matter, there is...
I imagine your Excellency has been informed that in consequence of the resolution of Congress for granting commissions to Aide De Camps appointed under the former establishment, I have obtained one of Lieutenant Colonel in the army of the United States, bearing rank since the 1st of March 1777. It is become necessary to me to apply to your Excellency to know in what manner you foresee you will...
I am extremely sorry to have embarrassed you by my late application, and that you should think there are insuperable obstacles to a compliance with it. Having renounced my expectations, I have no other inducement for troubling Your Excellency with a second letter, than to obviate the appearance of having desired a thing inconsistent with the good of the service, while I was acquainted with the...
The other day I applied to Col. Tilghman for an order for Shoes for the Two Companies of levies. He thought on a general principle it could not be granted; but as from the best of my own recollection confirmed by inquiry of others, I have reason to believe a distinction was made last campaign in favour of the advanced corps; in the case of Cortland’s regiment, I am induced to submit the matter...
Your Excellency will, I am persuaded, readily admit the force of this sentiment, that though it is the duty of a good citizen to devote his services to the public, when it has occasion for them, he cannot with propriety, or delicacy to himself, obtrude them, when it either has, or appears to have none. The difficulties I experienced last campaign in obtaining a Command will not suffer me to...
Flattering myself that your knowlege of me will induce you to receive the observations I make as dictated by a regard to the public good, I take the liberty to suggest to you my ideas on some matters of delicacy and importance. I view the present juncture as a very interesting one—I need not observe how far the temper and situation of the army make it so—The state of our finances was perhaps...
I had the honor of writing to your Excellency lately on a very confidential subject and shall be anxious to know as soon as convenient whether the letter got safe to hand. The bearer Shattuck thinks he can point out the means of apprehending Wells & Knowl ton the two persons whom Your Excellency was authorised to have taken into custody. I have desired him to call upon you to disclose the...
I am duely honored with Your Excellency’s letter of the 4th and 12th instant—It is much to be regretted though not to be wondered at, that steps of so inflammatory a tendency have been taken in the army—Your Excellency has in my opinion acted wisely—The best way is ever not to attempt to stem a torrent but to divert it. I am happy to find You coincide—in opinion with me on the conduct proper...
Your Excellency will before this reaches you have received a letter from the Marquis De la Fayette informing you that the preliminaries of peace between all the belligerent powers have been concluded—I congratulate your Excellency on this happy conclusion of your labours—It now only remains to make solid establishments within to perpetuate our union to prevent our being a ball in the hands of...
I wrote to Your Excellency a day or two ago by express—Since that a Committee appointed on the communications from you have had a meeting, and find themselves embarrassed. They have requested me to communicate our embarrassments to you in confidence and to ask your private opinion. The army by their resolutions express an expectation that Congress will not disband them previous to a settlement...
The inclosed I write more in a public than in a private capacity—Here I write as a citizen zealous for the true happiness of this country—as a soldier who feels what is due to an army which has suffered every thing and done much for the safety of America. I sincerly wish ingratitude was not so natural to the human heart as it is—I sincerely wish there were no seeds of it in those who direct...
I have received your Excellency’s letters of the 31st of March & 4th of April, the last to day—The one to Col. Bland as members of the Committee has been read in Committee confidentially and gave great satisfaction. The idea of not attempting to separate the army before the settlement of accounts corresponds with my proposition—That of endeavouring to let them have some pay had also appeared...
Congress having appointed a committee consisting of Messrs Maddison Osgood, Wilson, Elseworth and myself to consider what arrangements it will be proper to adopt in the different departments with reference to a plan; I am directed by the Committee to address your Excellency on the subject of the military Department. The Committee wish Your Excellency’s sentiments at large on such institutions...
There are two resolutions passed relative to the restoration of the British Prisoners and to making arrangements for the surrender of the posts in the possession of the British troops, the first of which is to be transacted by you in conjunction with the secretary of War—the latter by yourself alone. I will explain to you some doubts which have arisen in Congress with regard to the true...