Alexander Hamilton Papers

To Alexander Hamilton from Major General Nathanael Greene, [15 May 1780]

From Major General Nathanael Greene

[Morristown, New Jersey, May 15, 1780]

Dear Sir

I thank you kindly for your candid reply.1 I confess my self unable to write a milder letter upon this subject than this I send you. My feelings are so irritated that the moment I begin to write my passions take the lead in the Sentiment and mingle in such a manner as you see by my composition. I strove as much as ever Mortal did to keep down my resentment; but I found it impossible and there was in doubt with respect to the propriety of what I had written.

I send you herewith the Letter of the Treasury; and that of my Answer, and if you are at leisure, and will write your sentiments upon the subject, in the manner you think I ought to answer, keeping in mind the charge and insult, and that too tame a submission will confirm them in the truth of the charges, I shall be much oblige[d] to you. One thing more I would have you keep your Eye upon, which is I intend to get out of the Department the moment I can do it without certain ruin to myself.

ADf, William L. Clements Library of the University of Michigan; copy, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

1Greene had for some time been in conflict with certain members of Congress concerning his duties as quartermaster general and the management of his department. He received from the Board of Treasury a letter which called for his accounts and which in his opinion cast some doubt on his integrity. He then apparently wrote a draft to H about this matter; and H, according to Greene, made a “candid reply.” Neither Greene’s nor H’s letters have been found.

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