George Washington Papers

General Orders, 21 August 1775

General Orders

Head Quarters, Cambridge, August 21st 1775.

Parole, Norfolk.Countersign Oporto

The Court of enquiry ordered to sit Yesterday upon Col. Ebenezer Bridge, to sit this day at three O’Clock P.M.1

Michael Berry tried by a late General Court Martial for “stealing a Hat from Capt. Waterman”2 is found guilty, and sentenced to receive Thirty Lashes, but in Consideration of his long Confinement; the General pardons the prisoner.

General Sullivan’s Brigade to be mustered to morrow—The Muster Master General, to begin with the Regiment posted on the left of the lines, exactly at Six O’Clock, with the next Regiment on the left at seven, and so on untill the whole are mustered: The Field & Staff Officers of each Regiment, are to be mustered in the eldest Captains Company, and such as were draughted to the Regimt of Artillery, are to be mustered only to the day they were draughted. The Regiment of Artillery to muster them from that time.

A Serjeant, Corporal & nine Men, to mount Guard to morrow morning, at Mr Fainweathers House, lately converted into an Hospital.3 The Serjt to receive his Orders from Dr Church, Director of the Hospital.4

Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1For a discussion of the charge against Bridge, see General Orders, 20 Aug. 1775, n.2.

2Andrew Waterman of Smithfield, R.I., was a captain in Col. Daniel Hitchcock’s regiment from 3 May 1775 to the end of the year, and during the early months of 1776, he served as a captain in the Rhode Island state regiment commanded by Col. Henry Babcock. Waterman represented Smithfield in several sessions of the Rhode Island general assembly between 1776 and 1789.

3Artemas Ward’s orderly book reads “Mr Fayerweather’s House” (MHi: Ward Papers). Thomas Fayerweather’s house stood a short distance west of Cambridge near Andrew Oliver’s mansion, Elmwood, which also served the Continental army as a hospital (General Orders, 26 July 1775).

4Benjamin Church (1734–c.1778), a member of a distinguished Boston family and one of the city’s leading physicians, was appointed director and chief physician of the army’s hospital by the Continental Congress on 27 July. Church received his medical training during the 1750s, first under a Boston doctor and then in London hospitals. Returning to Boston with an English wife in 1759, he soon established a reputation as a skillful surgeon and an expert on smallpox inoculation. He also became known as something of a literary figure and a radical Whig politician. By 1770 Church was devoting much of his time and talent to revolutionary politics. He played a leading role in the Boston committee of correspondence, the Massachusetts provincial congress, and the colony’s committee of safety, and on 2 June 1775 he presented to the Continental Congress the letter from the Massachusetts provincial congress which proposed that the delegates in Philadelphia adopt the army outside Boston (JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds. Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789. 34 vols. Washington, D.C., 1904–37. description ends , 2:76–78). That appearance before Congress may have contributed to his appointment as hospital director. Unknown to the Patriot leaders, however, Church had for many months been acting as a British agent, writing anonymous articles for Boston’s Tory newspaper, the Censor, and furnishing much valuable information about American plans and activities to Gen. Thomas Gage. Church’s double-dealing was not discovered until late September of this year. See Council of War, 3–4 Oct. 1775. He was imprisoned by the American authorities until sometime in 1778, when he was allowed to leave the country apparently for the West Indies. The vessel on which Church sailed was never heard of again and was presumed lost at sea.

Index Entries