George Washington Papers

Memorandum respecting the Militia, 10 May 1756

Memorandum respecting the Militia

[Winchester, 10 May 1756]

May 10th He1 came into Town & infd me that beside himself there were [ ] Officers whereof [ ] were Field Officers and [ ] private Men—and that by a late supply2 his number of arms were now abt 80.

Colo. Bailor with 4 Field Offr⟨s⟩ 4 Captains 8 Subalterns & 8 Serts 8 Corpl and 170 Private arrivd at this place from Caroline County.3

1GW was referring to Col. Thomas Slaughter of the Culpeper County militia.

2GW wrote “supply” in the place of an illegible word.

3GW’s friend John Baylor (1705–1772), of Newmarket, was the county lieutenant of Caroline. The other three field officers from Caroline County who attended GW’s council of war in Winchester on 14 May 1756 were Col. George Muse (1720–1790), Maj. Francis Taylor (d. 1765), and Maj. Joseph Stevens (d. 1766). Muse, a veteran of the Cartagena expedition in 1741 and GW’s second in command at Fort Necessity in 1754, resigned under a cloud from the Virginia Regiment shortly after the capitulation at Fort Necessity. Majors Taylor and Stevens both were planters and veteran militia officers in Caroline County. Taylor, who at this time was a justice of the peace, later served as county sheriff. He was ultimately removed from the office of sheriff by Gov. Francis Fauquier because of a shortage in his accounts. Stevens supervised the payment of the workmen at the fort at Winchester during the summer of 1756.

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