George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Colonel William Malcom, 21 August 1780

To Colonel William Malcom

Head Quarters Orange Town 21st Augt 1780


I recd your favr of the 14th: If the Militia under your command are drawn out for the Campaign, as I think they are, I shall have no objection, if the measure should be agreeable to the Governor, to receiving those who want Arms into the York Brigade, and arming them from the public Magazines.

You will be pleased on the receipt of this to march from your present Ground to where the Road from Niack crosses the mountain1 and falls into the main Road. You will take the most convenient situation for Wood—Water &ca and inform me upon your arrival there.2 Should you not have Waggons enough to move and the Qr Mr cannot furnish you, you must leave a party to impress as many as will bring down your Baggage.3 I am &.

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

1GW is referring to South Mountain, one mile south of Haverstraw, New York. Two roads crossed the mountain on the lower elevations of its northwest and southeast ends.

2GW modified this order the next day, writing to Malcom from headquarters at Orangetown: “I wrote to you yesterday directing you to march from Stoney point to the place where the Road from Niack crosses the Mountain and falls into the Main Road: But you will upon the receipt of this continue your march to Dobbs’s ferry and take post there for the present. Should you not be able to reach that place this Evening you will move to it as early as possible in the morning—Be pleased to let me hear from you by the Bearer” (Df, in Tilghman’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW).

3Malcom replied to GW on 22 Aug. from Haverstraw: “Your Excellencys letter dated yesterday only got to my hands this forenoon—I would have Marched on Receipt of the orders but have been oblidged to Send boats up as far as New Windsor for provision—The Commissary here had none—nor could General Arnold Spare any from the fort.

“I Shall proceed According to orders early in the morning. … no Waggons here—I think of hazarding our baggage by Water (ALS, DLC:GW).

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