George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Major General William Heath, 11 October 1776

From Major General William Heath

Kingsbridge Octr 11th 1776

Dear General

I have Just Received the Honor of yours of this Day’s date, and am fully Convinced that a Work should be thrown up without the Least Loss of Time at the mouth of Spiten devil—If Colonel Putnam and Colo. Knox Can be spared a few hours I wish Your Exellency would please to Send them Here in Order to Trace out a Proper Work, and Determine what Ordnance will be necessary to be Mounted at the Mouth or on the Heights, on the North River, I have Sent to General Lincoln desiring him to be here as Soon as Possible when I shall Communicate to him what your Excellency has Directed, Which I shall Aim to do in Such Manner, as to rouse to Vigilance and avoid alarm.1 I have the Honor to be with great Respect Your Exellencys Most Humble Sert

W. Heath

ADfS, MHi: Heath Papers.

1GW received this letter the next day, when Robert Hanson Harrison wrote Heath that GW “has given Orders for all the Regiments to be under Arms here that they may be ready to Act as Occasion may require—he wishes you to make such disposition of the Troops on your side & of the Two Militia Regiments that are posted opposite to this as you think necessary and begs & Trusts that every possible Opposition will be given to the Enemy. God bless & lead you on to Victory. . . . [P.S.] His Excellency would beg your attention to one thing Viz., that you will take proper precautions against a Feint & watch the Enemy’s Motions—they perhaps may make a feint to land at Frogs point to draw your attention that way & slip down when it is high water towards Morrissania with a view of getting in your Rear—Guard agt that” (MHi: Heath Papers).

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