George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Jeremiah Wadsworth, 27 August 1779

From Jeremiah Wadsworth

West Point 27 Augt 1779


I have delayed for some days to express my fears to your Excellency, that there would be a want of flour for the army, expecting Mr Flints return from Philadelphia, and hoping he would bring more favorable accounts than I have hitherto had; but he not returning every information I have been able to obtain confirms me in a belief that we shall be out of flour in three weeks.1

I have obtained from the State of New-york all the State magazines of flour2—the whole of their last years crop of wheat is exhausted, the new is not threshed, and I have no hopes of obtaining any supplies soon in this state.3 I am unacquainted with the state of the magazines in Philadelphia, and in Maryland the flour is not under my direction. The supplies for three weeks is on this side the Delaware, and with the greatest œconomy will not last longer than that time. I am &

Jema Wadsworth

Copy, in James McHenry’s writing, NN: Washington Collection; LB, CtHi: Jeremiah Wadsworth Papers; copy, DLC: U.S. Revolution Autograph Documents; copy, MdAA; copy, enclosed in GW’s circular of 28 Aug. sent to New York governor George Clinton, N: George Clinton Papers. A document described as a draft of this letter was offered for sale in the Stan V. Henkels Catalogue, Papers of Caesar Rodney etc., in June 1919; however, it was most likely a copy of the letter GW sent Rodney in his circular letter of 28 August. There are textual differences between the NN copy and the LB at CtHi. The most significant variations are noted below.

On 28 Aug., GW addressed a circular to the states on this issue, enclosing a copy of this letter from Wadsworth.

1On the LB, the following text follows at this point: “unless measures are taken to procure supplies out of the new Crops of wheat none of which are Yet threshed and no body is willing to sell for Money.” Royal Flint apparently did not deliver a report to Wadsworth until November (see Wadsworth to GW, 11 Oct., n.3).

2See Wadsworth to George Clinton, 12 Aug., in Hastings and Holden, Clinton Papers, description begins Hugh Hastings and J. A. Holden, eds. Public Papers of George Clinton, First Governor of New York, 1777–1795, 1801–1804. 10 vols. 1899–1914. Reprint. New York, 1973. description ends 5:190–91.

3The last eighteen words do not appear on the LB.

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