George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Lieutenant Colonel John Laurens, 28 June 1778

From Lieutenant Colonel John Laurens

[28 June 1778] Half after nine oClock—
on my return to the same spot from whence I had retired before—
near Monmouth Court house [N.J.]


Since I wrote Your Excellency1 the two columns of the enemy which were only as I apprehend two Regiments marching by files, to envelop the party of Cavalry with which I was reconnoitring2—have retired from the woods into which they were gliding on our right and left—their advanced videts have been withdrawn, and the whole appears to be moving off. I am with the greatest respect Your Excellencys most obedt Servt

John Laurens Aide de Camp.

Genl Wayne is now advancing through the woods to their Rear—he had been recalled before in consequence of wrong intelligence.


1No other letter of this date or the previous day from Laurens to GW has been identified.

2Laurens spent the morning reconnoitering ahead of Lee’s advance past the East Ravine (see his testimony in Lee Papers description begins [Charles Lee]. The Lee Papers. 4 vols. New York, 1872-75. In Collections of the New-York Historical Society, vols. 4–7. description ends , 3:51–52). Most of GW’s aides were occupied with similar tasks, and only Lt. Col. John Fitzgerald stayed with the commander in chief during his approach to the battlefield.

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