George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Major General Benedict Arnold, 11 July 1778

To Major General Benedict Arnold

Head-Quarters Paramus [N.J.] 11th July 1778

Dear Sir

Your favor of the 8th inst. affords me peculiar satisfaction by informing me that your wound begins to wear a favorable aspect, & that you are recovered from the disorder in your stomach—The left wing of the army is advanced four miles from this place, & 19 miles from Kings ferry—the other two divisions are moving on after it with proper intervals—the enemy since quitting the Jerseys have encamped in three divisions on Staten-Island, New York Island and Long Island—it does not appear to be their design or even practicable for them immediately to commence any offensive operations—this consideration added to the intense heat of the weather determines me to move very leisurely and spare the troops as much as possible—My hurry was so great when I last wrote that I omitted returng you my thanks for your obliging care in forwarding a Letter to Mrs Washington—you will be so good as to accept them now, and excuse the delinquency.1

The intelligence of the French fleets sailing from Toulon. gives some weight to the accounts which have been received by a Flag boat from New York of the arrival of a French Fleet off Chesapeak-bay—and induces me to congratulate you on it as matter worthy of credit—a vigorous press is said to have taken place in the harb⟨or⟩ of New York, for the purpose of manning the ⟨ir⟩ large Ships which are ordered to be ready for Sea.2 I am with great regard and es⟨teem⟩ Dr Sir &.

Df, in John Laurens’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1GW’s last letter to Arnold was apparently that of 6 July. The letter for Mrs. Washington was enclosed with a letter from GW to Arnold of 29 June (not found). In his letter to GW of 30 June, Arnold reported forwarding the letter to her.

2For these reports, see William Winds to GW, 10 July.

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