George Washington Papers

To George Washington from William Livingston, 17 May 1778

From William Livingston

Princeton [N.J.] 17 May 1778

Dear Sir

I am told that houses are preparing in New York for the reception of Refugees from Philadelphia.

The inclosed, Lord Sterling will be able to explain to your Excellency—If not I know his Lady can1—your Excellency will be pleased to acknowledge the receipt of it as soon as possible—I am with the highest Esteem your Excellencys most humble St

Wil: Livingston


1Livingston enclosed a second letter of this date from himself to GW in Dutch; the translation reads: “The Man whom you enquire after goes now with this letter to the Camp, he pretends to have a Commission from General Washington for Secret Busyness as I am told, he goes frequently from this place to the Camp, he pretends that he undertakes this Journey on busyness with General Green” (DLC:GW). Livingston elaborated in his letter to GW of 20 May.

Major General Stirling’s wife was William Livingston’s sister, Sarah Livingston Alexander (1725–1804). Lady Stirling was fluent in Dutch and assisted her brother in translating Dutch documents throughout the war.

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