George Washington Papers

To George Washington from John Jay, 13 July 1779

From John Jay

Philadelphia 13th July 1779


You will receive herewith enclosed Copies of two Letters this moment read in Congress. The Intelligence they communicate being important is transmitted by Express.1 I have the Honor to be With the greatest Respect Your Excys most Obedt Servt

N.B. The same verbatim to Governor Trumbull.

LB, DNA:PCC, item 14.

1The enclosures were copies of letters from Arthur Lee to “the Chairman of the Com[mitt]ee of foreign Correspondence,” written at Paris on 6 April, and Joshua Johnson to Maryland delegate William Carmichael, written at Nantes, France, on 11 April, both in DLC:GW (see also DNA:PCC, items 54 and 78, and Smith, Letters of Delegates, description begins Paul H. Smith et al., eds. Letters of Delegates to Congress, 1774–1789. 26 vols. Washington, D.C., 1976–2000. description ends 13:207–8).

Lee’s letter reads: “I have received Intelligence, which I think may be trusted, that it is just determined in the British Cabinet, to send over immediate orders for an expedition, thro’ the Sound up Connecticut river. They are to land at Withersfield, and proceed by land to New-haven-bay, where they are to embark, after having plundered, burnt, & destroyed all in their way.”

Johnson’s letter reads: “This day I recd a Letter containing the following paragraph. ‘Instructions are given, or on the point of being given, for an Expedition from New York through the sound up Connecticutt River as far as Weathersfield to Hebron Fairfield &c. and to retreat across by Land to New Haven, to burn & destroy all before them.’ The duty I owe my Country has made me catch at the opportunity of sending this by the boat Stephen now at Brest, and hope it will arrive in time to prevent any mischief.”

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