George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Major General Stirling, 25 October 1778

To Major General Stirling

Head Quarters Fredericksbg 25th October 1778

My Lord.

The intelligence communicated in yours of yesterday1 is confirmed by a Gentleman who has been into New York with a flag and is just returned.2 The mistake into which we have been led, as to the embarkation, and the sailing of those transports which actually have the troops on board, has somewhat deranged us. Lest the enemy should take any advantage, be pleased to order Woodfords Brigade to move immediately towards the Clove, and to take post in such a situation as to be able to occupy it should they move up the River. Instead of sending the parties to repair the Roads from Maxwells and Woodfords Brigades,3 they may now both go from Woodfords, which will lay in a convenient situation for that purpose. Should the enemy, contrary to our expectations, move up the River, you will take such measures to cooperate with us as shall seem to your Lordship most advisable. I will, in my next, give you an answer respecting Colo. Burr.4 I am &c.

Df, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1Stirling’s letter to GW of 24 Oct. has not been found.

2GW apparently is referring to Maj. Daniel Putnam, who had accompanied the flag sloop carrying Henry Cuyler’s family and personal effects to New York City and had returned to Maj. Gen. Israel Putnam’s headquarters on 23 Oct. (see Israel Putnam to GW, 18 Oct., and note 5 to that document, and Baldwin, Revolutionary Journal description begins Thomas Williams Baldwin, ed. The Revolutionary Journal of Col. Jeduthan Baldwin, 1775–1778. 1906. Reprint. New York, 1971. description ends , 137). Israel Putnam’s letters to GW of 24 Oct., one or both of which contained the intelligence brought by Daniel Putnam, have not been found.

3See GW’s previous orders regarding the repair of these roads in his first letter to Stirling of 24 October.

4This letter has not been identified, but see GW to Aaron Burr, 26 Oct., in Burr to GW, 24 Oct., n.1.

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