George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Major Benjamin Tallmadge, 29 May 1779

To Major Benjamin Tallmadge

Hd Qrs Middlebrook May 29th 1779.

Dr Sir,

Press S—— C——1 to contrive if possible some expeditious way of communicating his intelligence to me. If he could open a channel by the way of Bergen & the English Neighbourhood it is probable the situation of the army may facilitate it—but I would have him act cautiously.

In all his Letters let him mention the Naval as well as Land strength. What is going forward—& whether the preparations2 are designed for a Land or Water expedition. What condition their waggons & horses are in—whether preparing for the field by Assembling, and repairing them. and if Troops should arrive to notice the Corps. The number of Drafts & Recruits for their Regimts &ca &ca. If he wants more money I can furnish him with a small Sum. I am Dr Sir Yr Most obedt Ser.

Go: Washington

ALS, MiU-C: Clinton Papers; copy (extract), UkLoBM, Additional Manuscripts. GW addressed and wrote “Favour’d by Colo. Webb” on the cover. Col. Samuel Blachley Webb wrote and signed a note on the cover, dated 13 June at Wethersfield, Conn., indicating that he had received the letter and forwarded it. Tallmadge received the letter, but it was subsequently captured, along with other letters and papers, during a British raid on 2 July; see William Heath to GW, 4 July (MHi: Heath Papers); and GW to Tallmadge, 5 July (DLC:GW).

1GW is referring to Tallmadge’s spy Samuel Culper, a pseudonym for Abraham Woodhull.

2GW is referring to British preparations for a move up the Hudson River; see William De Hart to GW, 30 May, n.1.

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