To Brigadier General James Clinton
Head Quarters New York 12th Sepr 1776
I have before me your two Letters of the 8th and 10th Inst. the first inclosing Returns of the Number of Men and Ordnance and Artillery Stores at Forts Montgomery and Constitution; the last, Copies of two Letters from the Convention of the State of New York, by which it appears they had ordered in 600 Militia as a Reinforcement to the two posts, and which I hope will put them in a proper State of Defence.1
I ordered Colo. Knox to provide and forward the different Articles wanted by you in the Ordnance Department, but he informed me, that from the present unsettled State of our Magazine and Laboratory (many of our Stores being removed and on their way to Kingsbridge and Mount Washington) he could not comply at once with the whole of the demand, but would send what he could conveniently collect.
The Convention of New York having appointed Mr Schenk to provide what Articles they found wanting at their late Review of your Works and Stores (and which include many of the Articles you wrote for) I hope, as he will make it his particular Business, that he will collect many Articles, which Colo. Knox from the present hurry of our Affairs cannot attend to.2 And if they should both provide the same things, your Stores will only be the fuller. I have again ordered the Quarter Masr Genl to send up the Nails with all possible Expedition.
The Convention having ordered an Armourer with proper Tools to be fixed at Your posts, I hope what Arms are at present out of Repair will soon be made fit for Use.3 We must make every shift with our old Arms, till we can get better supplied. I am Sir Yr most obt Servt
LS, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, NNPM; LB, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.
1. The LB reads: “which I hope will prove sufficient to put them in a proper State of Defence.”
2. John Schenk, Jr. (1758–1845), of Poughkeepsie, who had served as captain of a company of Dutchess County minutemen during 1775 and had been promoted to major in April 1776, was appointed by the convention on 7 Sept. to act as agent for procuring and forwarding nails, entrenching tools, and various ordnance supplies to Fort Montgomery (see 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 , 1:415, 614). Schenk wrote Abraham Yates, Jr., on 9 Sept. accepting the appointment, and he appeared before the state committee of safety the next day to receive its orders (see Force, American Archives description begins Peter Force, ed. American Archives. 9 vols. Washington, D.C., 1837–53. description ends , 5th ser., 2:260). For the expanded list of military stores that Schenk was directed on that date to furnish for the highland forts, see 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 , 1:618; see also GW to Abraham Yates, Jr., this date.
3. The convention took this action on 7 Sept. (see ibid., 614).