George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Lieutenant General Rochambeau, 11 September 1780

To Lieutenant General Rochambeau

Head Quarters Bergen County 11th Septr 1780


I have received Your Excellency’s favor of the 6th. I have no intelligence of Admiral Arbuthnots arrival at New York or at Sandy Hook—perhaps he may be standing at a greater distance from the Land than heretofore, to avoid the gales of wind which may be commonly expected upon the coast at this season1—I received the following from New York yesterday, whether the men of War alluded to were the English Fleet or a French Squadron time must determine “Septemr 7th 1780—since writing Yesterday the Ship Admiral Arbuthnot arrived and the Captain of Marines tells me they were chased all last Sunday by a Fleet of eight Sail of heavy Ships all two and three deckers which they took to be the second division of the French. As soon as this news came to Town, a Ship was sent out to cruise, and the Galatea will sail to day if they can get her ready, they have two hundred hands at work upon her.”2

I have accounts thro’ a variety of channels that an embarkation of Troops is preparing at New York—their number and destination is not ascertained, the accounts differ materially as to the first, but they seem generally to agree that they are bound for Virginia or Carolina.

Your Excellency may be assured of being regularly informed of every move of the Enemy, and that no pains shall be spared to penetrate their designs.3 I have the honor to be With the truest esteem your Excellency’s Most Obet & hum. Servant

Go: Washington

LS, in Richard Kidder Meade’s writing, CtY-BR-R; Df, DLC:GW; Rochambeau’s French translation, CtY-BR-R; LB, in French, DLC: Rochambeau Papers, vol. 7; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

2For this intelligence, see a report in John Vanderhovan’s writing dated 7 Sept. that identifies “Georg webster” as the British marine captain (DLC:GW).

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