1st. Received Letters from Generals Schuyler & Clinton,1 containing further but still indistinct accts, of the enemys force at Crown point. Letters from Doctr. Smith of Albany,2 &—Shepherd3 principal armourer at that place, were intercepted, going to the enemy with acct. of our distresses—the strength & dispositon of our Troops—The disaffection of particular Settlements—the provision these Settlemts. had made to subsist them—their readiness to join them—the genl. temper of the people and their earnest wishes for their advance in force—assuring them of the happy consequences which would derive to the Kings arms if they would move rapidly to Albany. In consequence of this information I directed the Q. M. General to provide Craft for, & the 6 Companies of Vanscaicks Regiment & Hazens to proceed immediately to Albany & put themselves under General Clintons orders.4
1. James Clinton to GW, 30 May 1781, enclosing Philip Schuyler to Clinton, 24 May 1781 (DLC:GW).
2. Dr. George Smith of Albany had been arrested in Aug. 1780, charged with aiding a British spy through American lines. Smith was released shortly after his arrest, but he remained under suspicion and his movements were sharply curtailed. In May 1781 the board of commissioners for detecting and defeating conspiracies decided that “Doctor George Smith and his son Terence Smith are Persons whose going at large at this Time may prove detrimental to the Safety of the State.” Dr. Smith attempted to flee to Canada but was apprehended at Bennington, Vt., 30 May 1781. In Aug. 1781 he was implicated in a plot to take Philip Schuyler prisoner (PALTSITS description begins Victor Hugo Paltsits, ed. Minutes of the Commissioners for detecting and defeating Conspiracies in the State of New York, Albany County Sessions, 1778–1781. 3 vols. Albany, 1909–10. description ends , 2:477, 479, 545, 561, 720–21, 726, 728, 765).
3. William Shepherd. His name appears several times as bailsman for individuals in Albany suspected of Tory activities (PALTSITS description begins Victor Hugo Paltsits, ed. Minutes of the Commissioners for detecting and defeating Conspiracies in the State of New York, Albany County Sessions, 1778–1781. 3 vols. Albany, 1909–10. description ends , 1:216; 2:572, 597).
4. Tench Tilghman, one of GW’s aides-de-camp, sent these orders to Timothy Pickering, 1 June 1781 (DLC:GW).