George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Major Henry Lee, Jr., 5 June 1779

From Major Henry Lee, Jr.

Scotch plains, [N.J.] Friday 5th June 79


Being disappointed in not meeting with your Excellencys instructions which by a letter from Col. Meade was to have been lodged at General Green’s I have moved forward to this place,1 & intend to prosecute the route towards Paramus.

I am happy to advise your Excellency, that the horses are in true order for service, but must lament, that no measures have been taken by the Commissary General of forage for their subsistence on the march.

As the future services of the Corps will depend totally on the ability of the horses, I wish to consult their comfort by easy marches, & if a different line of conduct is necessary, must request your Excellency will please to direct. I have the honor to be, with inviolable affection your Excellency’s most obet & most hum: servant.

Henry Lee Junr


1Lee, who was at Burlington, N.J., when he wrote to GW on 18 May, is referring to a letter from GW’s aide-de-camp Richard Kidder Meade to him, written at Middlebrook on 1 June: “I have it in command from his Excellency, to desire that you will immidiately on the receipt of this, proceed with your Corps to this place, for your further directions[.] if the Genl should have left this Ground, you will apply at Genl Greenes present quarters near Vanvacters [Van Veghten’s] Bridge where instructions will be lodged for you. As it is meant you should come on without loss of time, you will make such an arrangement of your baggage as not to impede your progress, leaving it to follow you” (DLC:GW). Lee probably did not receive instructions contained in GW’s letter to him of 3 June, likely written at Middlebrook. That letter reads: “I am to desire that you will make no delay at this place, but continue your march to Pompton by the way of Morris Town, with as much dispatch as you can without injuring your horse” (Df, in Meade’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW).

Index Entries