George Washington Papers

To George Washington from John Gooch, 11 October 1780

From John Gooch

Boston Octr 11 1780

May it please your Excellency

to permit one who has had the honor of serveing under you in the Field to intrude and for a Moment divert your attention from the more important Concerns that are continually crowding on you to beg permission to lay before your Excellency a Claim the Justice of which I most cheerfully Submit to your Detirmination, In January 1777 I was appointed as Paymaster to one of the Extra Regements to be commanded by Collo. Ezekl Cornell & Recived Inlisting Orders & Instructions Signed by him, and continued till the fourteenth of July following when the Collo. sent me a Verbal message he had resign’d, till then I was prevented entering into any other Service, as belonging to that Regement and never drew any pay or Rations dureing that time, in the Winter of 1778 I had the honor of applying to your Excellency on the Subject and by your Direction made applycation t⟨o⟩ Collo. Cornell for a Certificate1 but though he acknowledged I did belong to the Regement yet the affair seem to him so perplexing he declind giveing the Certificate thus may it please your Excellency the affair is realy Situated and I know of no way to obtain what I think I have some reason to suppose is my Just due unless your Excellency will condescend to put me in a Way. the sum though small is of consequence to me being by the new Arangment thrown out of all imploy2 but though poor I have the consolation of Reflecting that I have to the best of my Judgment done my Duty both in the Line & while on the Staff with the additional pleasure of being able to settle my Public accounts and have a Balce in my favor.3

That Heaven may ever gaurd you from all Conspiracies and Dangers of your Enemies will ever be the fervent wish—of him who is with the greatest Devotion Your Most Obedt & Most hble Servant

John Gooch

ALS, DLC:GW. Gooch wrote “English Neibourhood” on the cover (see also Gooch to Nathanael Greene, this date, in Greene Papers description begins Richard K. Showman et al., eds. The Papers of General Nathanael Greene. 13 vols. Chapel Hill, N.C., 1976–2005. description ends , 6:369–70).

1No correspondence on this subject between GW and Gooch has been found.

2Gooch presumably refers to the army arrangement announced in the general orders for 7 June 1778.

3GW replied to Gooch from headquarters near Preakness on 23 Oct. 1780: “In answer to yours of the 11th I can only inform you that a Certificate from Genl Cornel, (then Colo. Cornel) of the time of your appointment and of the time at which he gave you notice that the Regiment could not be compleated, is necessary to enable you to draw your pay—When you have obtained that and produce Vouchers of your having drawn no pay during the time, I will issue a Warrant for the Amount” (Df, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW).

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