George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Captain John Paul Schott, 31 January 1777

To Captain John Paul Schott

Head Quarters [Morristown] Jany 31st 1777


You have herewith your recruiting Instructions, & Warrant to draw Money to begin with1—You have Liberty to Nominate your Subaltern Officers, in doing which you cannot be too particular as your own Reputation & the good of the Service in a great measure depend upon this Choice, should it happen that upon my seeing them I think them Incapable of filling the Posts to which they are nominat’d with honour, I shall not think myself bound to confirm your Choices—Fix upon some place contiguous to where you expect to raise the greatest number of men for your Rendezvous, & let me know from time to time how you proceed & when there is a probability of your Company being Compleat—I need not mention the necessity there is of putting your Men under Training duty as fast as they are rais’d, by which they will be capable of rendering immediate Service when call’d into the Field—Wishing you Success I am Sir Yr Humble Servt

Go: Washington

LS, in John Fitzgerald’s writing, NjMoHP. John Paul Schott (1744–1829) of Philadelphia, who was born in Hesse, was appointed captain of a Pennsylvania independent company on 6 Sept. 1776. Schott, whose company was taken into Ottendorf’s independent corps of foreigners on 7 Dec. 1776, was captured on 26 June 1777, at Short Hills, N.J., “where I suffer’d the greatest Cruelty man could Suffer. I was struck, kick’d, abused and almost perished for Hunger; At that time I was offer’d one thousand pounds and a Majority in the Enemy’s New Levies, but I despised their offer, and was determined to suffer death before I would betray the Cause I was Engaged in” (Schott to the Pennsylvania Council of Safety, 26 Nov. 1779, in Richards, The Pennsylvania-German in the Revolutionary War description begins Henry Melchior Muhlenberg Richards. The Pennsylvania-German in the Revolutionary War, 1775–1783. 1908. Reprint. Baltimore, 1978. description ends , 88–89). Schott was exchanged sometime after September 1778 and remained on active duty until 1781 (see Schott to GW, 18 July 1781, in DLC:GW).

1The enclosed recruiting instructions and warrant have not been found although on this date a warrant was issued to Schott for $1,000 (see GW’s warrant book no. 2, DLC:GW, ser. 5, vol. 18).

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