George Washington Papers

General Orders, 9 September 1780

General Orders

Head Quarters Steenrapia Saturday September 9. 80

Parole Barcelona Countersigns Fix; Firm
Watchword Drummers

[Officers] For the Day tomorrow[:] Brigadier General Irvine[,] Colonel Starr[,] Lieutenant Colonel North[,] Major Talbot[,] Brigade Major Ashley

The Commander in Chief thinks proper to mention that many officers who are sent on Extra Commands occasion both him and themselves a great deal of unnecessary trouble by not keeping more particular accounts of their expences than those they frequently exhibit and often reduce him to the painful necessity either of admitting Claims Stated in terms of the greatest generality, or of rejecting them or at least of postponing the payment from time to time ’till more particular accounts can be made out; to prevent like inconveniencies in future he requests that all officers who are sent upon such commands will be attentive to this matter—will note to whom they pay Money—The date and Place and will make out their accounts accordingly; and where Circumstances will admit it will also be prudent even to take in the bills they pay and receipts—These particularities are required by the public they are usual in private transactions between man and man and they are necessary for the General’s justification.1

He also thinks proper to enjoin again a pointed Attention to the general orders published the 18th of September last respecting Officers being sent on extra commands and that it is not to be done but in the manner there prescribed.

After Orders.

Brigadier General Poor will be interred tomorrow afternoon at Hackensack Church—the funeral procession will commence at four ô clock from Brewer’s house in front of the Infantry.2

Colonel Butler is appointed officer of the day for tomorrow vice Colonel Starr indisposed.

Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1GW’s aide-de-camp Richard Kidder Meade wrote Col. Moses Hazen from Tappan on 5 Oct. that officers under Hazen’s command pursuing deserters must obey these general orders (DLC:GW).

2Brig. Gen. Enoch Poor’s funeral procession on 10 Sept. left from the Brower house in Hackensack, N.J., and ended with his burial at the nearby First Dutch Reformed Church. The Brower family was prominent locally (see Clayton and Nelson, Bergen and Passaic description begins W. Woodford Clayton and William Nelson, eds. History of Bergen and Passaic Counties, New Jersey, with Biographical Sketches of Many of Its Pioneers and Prominent Men. Philadelphia, 1882. description ends , 326).

Continental army chaplain Joel Barlow wrote Ruth Baldwin, his eventual wife, from near Paramus, N.J., on 11 Sept.: “Yesterday the funeral of General Poor was attended with great solemnity and military parade. All the officers of the army—perhaps five hundred in number—with a regiment of infantry and a regiment of dragoons, marched in procession, with a large band of music playing the funeral march. In the first rank the deceased general’s horse was led with his usual trappings, his saddle and holsters, and boots fitted in the stirrups with no rider. … then followed the corpse with his sword and pistols hanging on the coffin, then the particular mourners, the two regiments, the officers, beginning with the juniors, while His Excellency closed the procession, which was about a mile long and extremely slow” (Todd, Life and Letters of Barlow description begins Charles Burr Todd. Life and Letters of Joel Barlow, LL.D.: Poet, Statesman, Philosopher. New York and London, 1886. description ends , 31–33; see also Thacher, Military Journal description begins James Thacher. Military Journal of the American Revolution, From the commencement to the disbanding of the American Army; Comprising a detailed account of the principal events and Battles of the Revolution, with their exact dates, And a Biographical Sketch of the most Prominent Generals. Hartford, 1862. description ends , 212–13).

Col. Israel Angell wrote in his diary entry for 9 Sept. that Poor died “Last Evening after a Short Illness of the putred feavour” (Field, Angell Diary description begins Edward Field, ed. Diary of Colonel Israel Angell, Commanding the Second Rhode Island Continental Regiment during the American Revolution, 1778–1781. Providence, 1899. description ends , 112–13). Pvt. Elijah Fisher of the 11th Massachusetts Regiment wrote in his journal entry for 8 Sept. that Poor died from a wound received in “a duel with a Major” (Fisher’s Journal description begins Wm. B. Lapham, ed. Elijah Fisher’s Journal while in the War for Independence, and Continued Two Years After He Came to Maine. 1775–1784. Augusta, Maine, 1880. description ends , 16; see also Ellis Ames, “Paper on the Duel between General Poor and Major Porter,” in Mass. Hist. Soc. Proc., 19 [1881–82]:256–61).

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