George Washington Papers

From George Washington to General William Howe, 5 September 1777

To General William Howe

Head Quarters of the Army [Wilmington, Del.]
5th Sept. 1777.


I did myself the honor to write you on the 16th of July upon the subject of an Exchange of Major Genl Prescot for Majr Genl Lee.

As I can only attribute your Silence upon a matter so personally interesting to both those Gentlemen to your not having received my former Letter, I am induced to transmit you a duplicate of it, to which I beg leave to request an Answer. I have the Honor to be with due Respect Sir Yr most obt Servt.

Df, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, DLC:GW; copy, in John Laurens’s writing, DLC:GW; two copies, P.R.O., 30/55, Carleton Papers; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

Howe’s aide Captain Muenchhausen says in his diary entry for 5 Sept. that “in the afternoon a letter arrived from General Washington. I understand it was an impudent letter, stating that he would not exchange General Lee for General Prescott” (Muenchhausen, At General Howe’s Side description begins Friedrich von Muenchhausen. At General Howe’s Side, 1776–1778: The Diary of General William Howe’s Aide de Camp, Captain Friedrich von Muenchhausen. Translated by Ernst Kipping. Annotated by Samuel Smith. Monmouth Beach, N.J., 1974. description ends , 28–30).

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