George Washington Papers

To George Washington from William Duer, 30 August 1776

From William Duer

In Committee of Safety Harlem Augt 30th 1776


By Order of the Committee of Safety of this State I transmit to your Excellency the Examination of Daniel Redfeild in order that such Measures may be pursued for baffling the Enemy’s Operations, as your Prudence shall dictate1—I have likewise to inform your Excellency that on Yesterday Morng one Lounsbery in Westchester County who had headed a Body of about 14 Tories was kill’d by an Officer nam’d Flood, on his Refusal to Surrender himself Prisoner—That in his Pocket Book was found a Commission sign’d by Genl Howe to Major Rogers empowering him to raise a Battalion of Rangers with the Rank of Lt Colo. Commandant; That annext to this was a Warrant to this Lounsberry sign’d by Major Rogers appointing him a Captain of one of these Companies.

Likewise a Muster Roll of the Men already enlisted—The Committee of Safety will transmit to your Excellency certified Copies of all these Papers, as early as possible.2 I am sir by Order Your most Obedt Hble Servt

Wm: Duer


1Daniel Redfield (1728–1788), a shipowner from Killingworth (now Clinton), Conn., says in the enclosed copy of his 29 Aug. examination that he was held on the British brig Halifax for a short time after the Halifax captured and burned his sloop in Long Island Sound on 26 August. From the Halifax’s pilot Redfield learned that the Halifax and two frigates “were to anchor in Flushing Bay, and that the Enemys design was to land Part of their Forces from Long Island, and that some Ships of War &cc. were to run up the North River and to land another Body of Men at or near Kingsbridge that they intended to make a Junction of their Forces, and did not doubt by these Means to cut off all Communication with our Army both by Land, and Water, and oblige them to Surrender for Want of Provisions. . . . They [do] not intend to make an Attack upon the City” (DLC:GW).

2William Lounsbury was killed on 28 Aug. near Mamaroneck, N.Y., by a detachment of Westchester County militia commanded by Capt. John Flood, whom the New York convention the next day rewarded with $20 for his action against such “a notorious enemy to the cause of America.” One of Lounsbury’s recruits was wounded, and four were captured (N.Y. Prov. Congress Journals description begins Journals of the Provincial Congress, Provincial Convention, Committee of Safety, and Council of Safety of the State of New-York, 1775–1776–1777. 2 vols. Albany, 1842. (Microfilm Collection of Early State Records). description ends , 1:599–600). The documents in Lounsbury’s pocketbook have not been identified.

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