George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Lieutenant Colonel Robert Hanson Harrison, 10 January 1777

To Lieutenant Colonel Robert Hanson Harrison

Morris Town Jany 10th 1777.

My dear Sir,

Inclosed are unsealed Letters for Baylor & Majr Clough—let every thing be put in motion agreeable to them as speedily as possible—& Clough or Starke, or both, set of as speedily as possible for Virginia.1

If Grayson accepts the offer of a Regiment he should set out immediately to raise it, in doing which he will, I expect, derive great assistance from Levin Powell if he Inclines to serve as Lieutt Colo. the other Officers, under the reserve of a negative, I leave to themselves to name. Young Ross I shall put into Gists Regiment.2

Let me have a Copy of the Instru[c]tions given Sheldon3—& if you could let me know exactly, how the matter stands with respect to the exchange of Prisoners I should be glad to be furnished with it as soon as possible, as I am blamed it seems for not facilitating that matter more—take the most speedy, & effectual measures to communicate the releasements that have come out in order that the several officers concernd may be under no doubt or embarrassment with respect to the part they are to act.

The Inclosed came to me from Richd Henry Lee Esqr.—I send it that if Grayson thinks proper to make use of Captn Kendal, he may.4 his writings do not convey the most exalted opinion of him, but he may be a good Officer, & somewhat of a Gentleman notwithstanding—Colo. Lee gives a good character of him, and a Company, if not obtaind at too great an expence in the officers of it, is no undesirable thing when so many Men are to be raised in a hurry.

I shall add no more at present than that I am most sincerely yrs

Go: Washington

P.S. Send me a Copy of that Resolution of Congress relative to Genl Lee—I hear they are about to try him as a Deserter.5 Inclosed is the Key of my red Trunk (coverd with a Bearskin) out of which please to take a Bunch of Keyes & send them to me by the first safe hand.6

G. W——n

ALS, DNA: RG 233, HR 22 A-B1, HR-155.

1See GW to George Baylor, 9 January. GW’s letter to Alexander Clough, which is mentioned also in GW’s letter to Baylor of 9 Jan., has not been found.

2GW wrote to William Grayson on 11 Jan. offering him command of one of the Sixteen Additional Continental Regiments and recommending Leven Powell for his lieutenant colonel (see GW to Grayson, that date). Powell accepted the commission (see Powell to GW, 29 Jan.), and David Ross, Jr., was appointed Grayson’s major.

4Neither the enclosed letter from Lt. Woffendall Kendall concerning his rank in the Continental service nor Lee’s undated letter to GW recommending the promotions of Kendall and Lt. Col. Thomas Hartley has been identified (see GW to Lee, this date). Woffendall Kendall (c.1740–c.1795) served as a captain in the Virginia militia and as a member of the Westmoreland County committee before receiving a commission as first lieutenant in the 5th Virginia Regiment on 5 Feb. 1776 (see Scribner and Tarter, Revolutionary Virginia description begins William J. Van Schreeven et al., eds. Revolutionary Virginia: The Road to Independence. A Documentary Record. 7 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1973–83. description ends , 4:492–93, 6:59). Kendall was promoted to captain of the 5th Virginia in April of this year.

5GW is referring to Congress’s resolution of 2 Jan. concerning Maj. Gen. Charles Lee’s exchange, enclosed in Hancock to GW, 6–7 Jan., which GW received by the time he wrote Hancock on 12 January.

6This trunk apparently accompanied the box of military papers that GW sent to Bowes Reed for safekeeping in August 1776. See GW to Hancock, 13 Aug., and Hancock to GW, 17 Aug. 1776.

Index Entries