From Captain Epaphras Bull
Motts Mills [N.Y.]
Friday 2 OClock P.M. [28 August 1778]1
I have to acquaint your Excellency that the Fleet from the Etward have now Past this place, there was in the whole Sixty Nine Sail Viz. 6 Ships, two of them Transports, 3 appeard to be of 18 or 20 guns Each, & one which Bro’t up the Rear of the whole had two Tier of guns—10 Brigs, 3 of them Armed, 21 Schooners, one of them Arm’d 6 Loaded with wood 2 with Hay, 32 Sloops, 13 Loaded with wood 2 with hay—which I believe is a pretty Exact Acct—there did not appear to be more men on board than were Necessary to work them, It was Impossable to Assertain the Force of any of them as the Air was very thick, there does not now appear any Vessel to the Etward Except the Stationed Brig in Hempstead Harbour—the Transports which came from N. York are now lying betwixt Frogs Neck & City Island Except 3 or 4 which have come up as far as Hart Island,2 I Intend going farther below this afternoon to find out If Possable a more Exact Acct of them. Interim I have the Honour to be your Excellencys Most Obt servant
1. The date is taken from a docket on the cover.
2. City Island and Hart Island lie just off the Bronx shore at the far western end of Long Island Sound. Hart Island is less than a mile east of City Island.