George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Lieutenant John Heard, 15 September 1777

From Lieutenant John Heard

Munday morning [15 September 1777] seven Oclock
at the Turk’s head [Pa.]


I have just Been Down to the out gards. Saw the Ennimy. they Lay about a half mile from Brumingham meeting House[.] I Saw a Old man and he tould me that the Hessians Told him that they Where to march the ⟨illegible⟩. The Hessians are the out Gards of the army When here. I think you Could Take the hessians By Surprise. I shall Continue on this Road till further Orders[.] I send you three men that have Been into the Enimy—they thought that we Where the British Light Horse[.] they tould me that our army was part at Sweeds ford Part at Philadelphia. I think they are Come out as Spies. I am your H. Servt

John Heard Leut


John Heard (c.1754–1826), a son of Gen. Nathaniel Heard of the New Jersey militia, had served as a second lieutenant in the eastern company of New Jersey artillery before becoming a lieutenant in the 4th Continental Dragoons in January 1777. Heard was promoted to captain in the 4th Dragoons in February 1778, and he served to the end of the war.

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