Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to —— Reid, 2 January 1781

To —— Reid

January 2d 1781


The arrival of a Hostile Army here being confirmed and there being Reason to believe they mean immediately to push into the Heart of the Country, you will be pleased in the instant of receiving this to put your Troops in motion for Petersburg leaving Orders for the Cloathing which will come to Brunswick to follow you.

I am Sir Your very humble Servant,


FC (Vi); at head of text: “To Lieutenant Reid or the commanding Officer of Major Nelson’s Cavalry at Brunswick Courthouse.”

The first name of the recipient of this letter has not been determined because of the various forms of spelling his surname. Reid (Read) held a lieutenancy in the third troop of Nelson’s cavalry; served in the Carolinas; and in Dec. 1780 returned to Virginia in command of the troop (Board of War to TJ, 20 Jan. 1780, and TJ’s reply thereto, 25 Jan.; Nathanael Greene to TJ, 14 Dec. 1780). This officer has been frequently confused with Capt. Edmund Read, in command of another troop of Nelson’s cavalry, serving as a guard to the Convention troops and at this time in Maryland (see George Muter to the Audi tors, 18 Jan. 1781 and note there).

Index Entries