George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Brigadier General John Lacey, Jr., 20 February 1778

From Brigadier General John Lacey, Jr.

Camp Bucks [Pa.] Febry 20th 1778


My people have taken Several persons going to Market Some of which is now Confind in my provo. three Young Fellows in perticulal, who were going to the Enemy with an entent to Stay with them, they had Meal on their Backs, which they Confess was for Market, they were flying to escape their fines in the Militia.

if your Excellency would Direct I would be glad, to try and punnish them here, as it is So far to Head Quarters that it is dificult to git the Evidences, there.

William Biles, who has been with the enemy Since they Came to Philada was taken coming to Deliver himself to the Mercy of his Country, he Says, and was Braught to My Camp. I have Sent him to Mr Wynkoops one—of the Magis[trate]s of Bucks, for a tryal.1 I am your Excel. obdt Sevt

John Lacey ⟨Jur⟩

ALS, CSmH; Sprague transcript, DLC:GW.

1The prisoner was apparently William Biles of Falls Township in Bucks County, Pa., who had served on that county’s committee of safety in 1776. Henry Wynkoop (1737–1816) of the Vredens Hof estate in Northampton Township, Bucks County, was a member of the Pennsylvania assembly in 1760–61 and of the Bucks County committee of observation in 1774–75. He served in a number of judicial offices before and during the war, being a justice of the peace for his county from 1764 until at least 1776 and later becoming president of the Bucks County court of common pleas and justice of the Pennsylvania high court of errors and appeals. Wynkoop was a delegate to the Continental Congress from 1779 to 1782 and to the first U.S. Congress from 1789 to 1791.

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