George Washington Papers

General Orders, 5 March 1778

General Orders

Head-Quarters V. Forge Thirsday March 5th 1778.

Parole: Eugene—Countersigns: Egham. Essex.

As Persons, Inhabitants of this State are often brought and lodged in the Provost-Guard upon charge of being disaffected or for other reasons which upon examination before a Court Martial appear groundless and those persons consequently subjected to needless Imprisonment; The Commander in Chief therefore desires that in future the Adjutant General would before commitment refer the Cases of such as appear to him not to come under cognizance for a breach of a late act of Congress for punishing of persons for going in or coming out of Philadelphia for certain purposes therein described,1 to the Judge-Advocate, in order that if he does not think the charges well supported by the Evidence, the prisoners may be immediately discharged.

Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1For the resolves of 8 Oct. 1777 authorizing trial by court-martial of those who acted as guides for, brought intelligence to, or supplied the enemy in Philadelphia, see JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds. Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789. 34 vols. Washington, D.C., 1904–37. description ends , 9:784–85.

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