George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Brigadier General Enoch Poor, 26 December 1779

To Brigadier General Enoch Poor

Head Quarters Morris Town Decr 26th 1779

Dr Sir

I this day received your favor of the 22d.1

I have granted a Warrant to Lieut. Blake for the Sum you mentioned to be hereafter accounted for by yourself2—I sincerely wish you success in the disposal of it.

I am truely concerned at the present state of your supplies of flour—It is however nothing more than what I was aware of, & I doubt not but you will take every step in your power to reconcile the want as well as possible—you may be assured our situation is much worse, for the Troops here are at half allowance & that of rice only—It really appears hard that this should be the case, when as you observe there is by no means a real scarcity of Grain & I wish the alternative to obtain it may not be by seizure: though I still hope by the activity of our Commissaries, that there may not be occasion for so disagreeable a step. I can only say that every thing in my power has been done to keep the Army supplied.3 I am with great regard Dr Sir Yr Mo. Obet servt


Df, in Richard Kidder Meade’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1Poor’s letter to GW of 22 Dec. has not been found.

2GW’s warrant book for 26 Dec. records $10,000 given “To Lt [Thomas] Blake 1st New Hampshire regt for the purpose of re[en]listing for the War the Men of that line to be accounted for by Genl Poor” (Revolutionary War Warrant Book 4, 1779–1780, DLC:GW, ser. 5).

Thomas Blake (1752–1840) hailed from Dorchester, Mass., worked as a carpenter at Dartmouth College, and served as an ensign in the 1st New Hampshire Regiment from November 1776 until his promotion to lieutenant in May 1778. Subsequently appointed regimental paymaster, Blake remained in the army for the entire war. For his journal with intermittent entries between 13 May 1777 and 25 Oct. 1780, see Kidder, History of the First New Hampshire, description begins Frederic Kidder. History of the First New Hampshire Regiment in the War of the Revolution. Albany, 1868. description ends 25–56; see also Sullivan Expedition Journals, description begins Frederick Cook, ed., and George S. Conover, comp. Journals of the Military Expedition of Major General John Sullivan against the Six Nations of Indians in 1779 With Records of Centennial Celebrations. Auburn, N.Y., 1887. description ends 38–41.

3For GW’s responses to serious provision shortages, see his letter to Samuel Huntington, 15 Dec., and Circular to the States, 16 Dec.; see also Jeremiah Wadsworth to GW, 8 Nov., and the source note and n.1 to that document.

Poor again addressed concerns over recruiting funds and provisions when he wrote GW on 29 Jan. 1780 (DLC:GW).

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