George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Captain Edward Norwood, 7 September 1778

To Captain Edward Norwood

Head Qrs [White Plains] Septr 7th 1778


Your favor of this date has been duly received.1

I have already given my reasons in General Orders, for disapproving the proceedings of the Court Martial in your case, and therefore I need not repeat them.2 I will only observe that they appeared to me, to be contrary to precedent and common usage—and totally irregular and incompleat. Under this persuasion I could not but continue your arrest. The matters in charge against you had never been tried.

With respect to any reflection on myself I believe you never intended One and I am concerned that my name is mentioned in any of the charges. This circumstance however has not, nor will it have I assure you, the least possible influence on my Judgement in deciding on your case. You will be tried by a Constitutional and General Court Martial—the One now sitting—and I doubt not agreable to the Articles of War and the customs of the Army.3 I am sorry your arrest has been of such long continuance; but it has been occasioned in a great measure, by the New and peculiar difficulties that have occurred in the course of the proceedings under It. I am sir Yr Most Obedt servt

Go: Washington

Df, in the writing of Robert Hanson Harrison, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1Norwood’s letter of 7 Sept. has not been found.

3For the verdict of this court-martial, see General Orders, 29 September.

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