George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Henry Bouquet, 24 July 1758

From Henry Bouquet

Camp near Reas Town 24th July 1758

Dear Sir

I received the favour of your two very obliging Letters of the 19th & 21st Instt. I am very glad that your Presence was not absolutely necessary at Winchester, as I Suppose the General will Soon call upon you, he is this day at Fort Littleton, and I expect him here to morrow or Wednesday: I have Sent him the Reports I had from the Road over Lawrell Hill, which appear to be practicable, but would perhaps require more time to open, than the Circumstances can permit:1 Therefore untill he has determined which Way to march,2 I think it is very well to open Braddocks Road, but I would not advance further than ten miles: The Rest I Suppose could be cut as fast as the army can march.

I do imagine that the General may Send a Body of Troops by this Road over Lawrell Hill, Either wth Waggons, or Bat Horses, and as you desire to have your Regt and Self employed immediatly I would be glad to Know before hand, (between us) if it would be agreable to you to march that Way or wait untill the General is able to determine fully about the Roads.3 You want the Interest of no body with him he has Several Times expressed to me how much he depends upon you and your Regt for the Success of this Expedition, and you may be certain that he will prevail himself on all opportunities of your Zeal and Experience and of your Knowledge of the Country.4

As to the Covers of the Locks, I Shall ask the General’s directions. Since the Hides would not be Sufficient to provide your men and may be wanted to tye the Loads of the Pack Horses.

As Soon as the Waggons you expect arrive, Please to Send me an Express, as the Circumstances could be different, I can give no orders about them.

I Shall Send you Provisions immediatly from hence, if I hear nothing of your Convoy.

Major Livingston nor any officer in the Service is allowed more than one Ration for himself.5 Please to order Some Soldiers to bake Bread for the Indians. they are to be paid at the rate of one Shill: per day Philada Curr: or nine Pence and one Jill of Rum, when employed.

The agent for the Contractors apply to me to desire you would give orders that Mr Düer be exemted from attending the Grass Gard, and appoin⟨t⟩ a proper Soldier to guide the Cattle to the best Pasture.6 He shall be paid.

The Genls orders for ⟨Signals⟩ Send all the Guides here.

I expect every day Some Tents and Bell of arms7—Be So good as to Send me a General Return of the deficiencys of the Troops under your Comand that the Genl may provide them as far as the Circumstances will permit.8

ADf, British Museum: Add. MSS 21641 (Bouquet Papers). There is the following notation on the back of the letter in Bouquet’s hand: “Letter written to Col. Washington & Col. Byrd the 24th July to Cumberland.” The draft of another letter from Bouquet to “Dear Colonel” dated 23 July (Add. MSS 21641, f. 19) may be the letter to Col. William Byrd that Bouquet was referring to here. It is printed in Stevens, Bouquet Papers description begins Donald H. Kent et al., eds. The Papers of Henry Bouquet. 6 vols. Harrisburg, Pa., 1951-94. description ends , 2:263–64, as a letter to GW, but its contents and the contents of the letters that GW and Bouquet wrote to one another at about this time make it very doubtful that it was a draft of a letter to GW and highly likely that it was a draft of a letter to Byrd instead.

1Bouquet wrote to Forbes on 21 July enclosing the “Journall of Captain [Edward] Ward sent to Reconnoitre the Alleghany and Laurell Hills the 8th July 1758 from Reas Town” (ibid., 2:251–56). General Forbes did not reach Raystown until mid-September, after Bouquet and most of his men had gone to the new encampment at Loyalhanna.

2Forbes responded on 23 July to Bouquet’s letter of 21 July with a strong attack on “parties” opposing the building of a road from Raystown toward Fort Duquesne and with a restatement of the reasons why he was determined to use a new road unless it proved impossible (ibid., 264–66).

3Bouquet’s two false starts in this paragraph reflect his concern about the wording of his statement referring to the new road from Raystown. He first revised and then struck out both of the following beginnings:

“In case the General Should determine to advance a Body of Troops on this Road, I Should be glad to Know before hand if it would be agreable to you to have your Regt and Self employed there, or if you would prefer to march.”

“I Suppose that the Genl will advance a Body of Troops upon this Road, over the Lawrell Hill and as you desire to be employed immediatly wth your Regt I would be glad to Know before hand, if this would be agreable to you, or if you prefer to wait until he may.”

4GW asked on 21 July for Bouquet’s “Interest . . . with the General.” Forbes’s letters to Bouquet include no mention either of GW by name or of his Virginia Regiment as such since May until this date except for an item in Forbes’s memoranda endorsed by Bouquet on 4 June: “If he pleases to March Colo Washingtons whole Regt to Fort Cumb. he may” (Stevens, Bouquet Papers description begins Donald H. Kent et al., eds. The Papers of Henry Bouquet. 6 vols. Harrisburg, Pa., 1951-94. description ends , 2:1–3).

5James Livingston was fort major of Fort Cumberland.

6In responding to this letter on 25 July GW identifies Mr. Düer as Mr. Dow, an “attendant” of the commissary. Bouquet also uses this spelling of the name (Dow) when writing to GW on 27 July. It is possible that he is the merchant from Winchester whom Adam Stephen mentions in his letter to GW on 19 July, or he may be Lt. James Dow, quartermaster of the 1st Battalion of the Royal Americans (60th Regiment).

7For the dispatch of tents and arms from Philadelphia to the Virginia troops, see James Sinclair to GW, 19 July. Bouquet’s letter to GW of 27 July indicates that the tents had arrived at Raystown by that time. Bells of arms were tents, usually conical in shape, for containing the small arms of each company.

8GW wrote Bouquet on 25 July that he was sending a return of the two Virginia regiments and of the Maryland troops at Fort Cumberland with notations giving the number of tents each group had. These particular returns have not been found, but see GW to Bouquet, 28 July, and its enclosure.

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