George Washington Papers

From George Washington to the Board of War, 8 February 1780

To the Board of War

Head Quarters Morris Town 8th Feby 1780


The inclosed is an Estimate of Ordnance and Ordnance Stores, which I think it expedient to have lodged at Pittsburgh, ready to answer any favorable opportunity which may present itself, for carrying on operations against the Enemy’s posts to the Westward.1 I do not know whether there is any practicable Road at this Season for Sleds, if there is, it would be much the easiest and cheapest mode of transportation. If there is not, I imagine there is no probability that Waggons can move till the Roads are settled in the Spring. I would however wish that measures may be taken to have the Artillery and stores prepared and conveyed as early as weather—Roads and other circumstances will admit.2 I have the honor to be with great Respect Gentlemen yr most obt Servt.

Df, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1See GW to Daniel Brodhead, 4 January. The retained copy of the enclosed “Ammunition and Apparatus necessary for the following Pieces of Ordnance,” dated at Morristown on 7 Jan. and signed by Brig. Gen. Henry Knox, lists the ammunition and ordnance stores necessary for two 6-pounders, one 3-pounder, two 5½-inch royal mortars, and one 8-inch howitzer. The two 6-pounders required 200 round shot and 60 case shot, both fixed with flannel cartridges; 400 tubes; 4 rammers and sponges; 4 worms and ladles; 4 trail handspikes; 2 tampions and straps; and 4 sets of drag ropes. The 3-pounder required 100 round shot and 30 case shot, both fixed with flannel cartridges; 200 tubes; 2 rammers and sponges; 2 worms and ladles; 2 trail handspikes; 1 tampion and straps; and 2 sets of drag ropes. The two mortars required 200 empty shells, 250 filled fuses, 200 empty flannel cartridges, 300 tubes, 4 rammers and sponges, and 2 tampions and straps. The howitzer required 100 empty shells, 120 filled fuses, 30 case shot, 130 empty flannel cartridges, 200 tubes, 2 rammers and sponges, 1 worm and ladle, 2 trail handspikes, 1 tampion and straps, and 2 sets of drag ropes. The list of ammunition and ordnance stores also included 1,200 pounds of powder, 20 pounds of “meal’d powder,” twelve dozen “port fires,” 200 pounds of “slow match,” 12 “portifire sticks,” 12 linstocks, 20 pounds of “kit,” 6 kit brushes, 4 “drudging boxes,” one dozen “sets and mallets for driving fuzes,” a set of “copper or tin measures from ½ oz. to 2 lbs.,” a set of brass scales and weights from ½ oz. to 2 lbs., 6 leather haversacks, 6 “budge barralls,” 8 gunner’s belts “with horns, pincers, hammers &ca complete,” 4 sets of “mens harness,” 6 lead aprons, 6 oil cloths, 12 “dress’d sheep-skins with the wool on,” 1,000 sponge tacks, 6 tanned hides, 12 “skeins marline,” 3 “fine tenant saws,” 6 “good axes,” 4 claw hammers, 1 gunner’s quadrant, 6 tin funnels, a pair of hand bellows “double ⟨blasted⟩, for proving shells,” 1 “Spirit Level,” and 6 scrapers for shells (DLC:GW).

2The Board of War replied on 4 March.

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