George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Francisco Rendon, 13 October 1780

To Francisco Rendon

Head Quarters Prackess Octr 13. 1780


I had the honor of receiving in due time your letter of 29th of July, transmitting me one from the Governor of Havannah and another from the lady of our deceased friend; but the movements of the army which soon after ensued prevented my acknowleging the receipt1—I have now the pleasure of your dispatch of the 30th of September with duplicates of the above mentioned letters—I beg you when you write to the Governor next to express to him my sensibility for the favour of his letter, and to forward the inclosed by the first opportunity.2

I am much obliged to you for the interesting intelligence you communicate; I wish the success of the expeditions you mention from the double motives of the warm interest I take in every thing that contributes to the honor and advantage of the arms of His Most Catholic Majesty, and from the beneficial influence which the intended operation may have on the affairs of the Southern states.

If it may be in my power at any time to promote the objects of your commission the motives I have already expressed and my esteem for you personally will make me happy to do it—We have recently received advices of a considerable embarkation at New-York, which was to have sailed three days since. We have not the particulars; but they shall be forwarded to you the moment they come to me. It may be useful to the officers charged with the expeditions you announce to be acquainted with this event.3 I have the honor to be Sir Your Most Obedt & hum.

Df, in Alexander Hamilton’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1GW had maneuvered his army for a possible attack on New York City (see his second letter to Rochambeau, 27 July, n.3).

2For the enclosure, see GW to María Elegio de la Puente, this date, found at GW to La Luzerne, 28 April, source note.

3Rendon replied to GW from Philadelphia on 20 Oct.: “On the 16th Inst. I had the great and distinguish’d honor, to receive the Letter which your Excellency’s Generous goodness was so kind as to write me, in answer to both my Letters of the 19th June and 30th Septr Last; by which I observe, your Excellency had not given punctual answer, on Account of the motions and Occupations of the Army under your Excellency’s Command; I also Observe your Excellency had received those which I inclos’d from the Governor of Havanna, as also your Excellency desire me to express by first opportunity to the said Governor, your Excellency’s most gratefull thanks for the distinguishd favors with which that Gentn treats your Excellency, and at the Same time, to Send the Letter for the Lady of our most esteem’d Deceas’d friend Mr Miralles.

“I perceive that the Intelligencys I gave your Excellency are the most Interesting, and received with the greatest pleasure, the more so because your Excellency wish Success to attend the Glorious Arms of the King my Master, by the great benefits, which are so proper to the good Issue of the Common Cause, and those which may result in favor of the United States, of all which your Excellency offer me your Powerfull Protection, which favor will enable me to fulfill the View I aim at, and to Show the goodness, your Exellency commence by acquainting me of the knowledge acquired of the movements of the Enemys in New York, notwithstanding the particulars of their design had not come to hand, which your Excellency is so good as to promise me as Soon as received.

“The particular Business of my Commission being to give Advises and Intelligences to the Governor of Havana, of the motions of the Enemy, to direct his Operations according, against the Possetions which they have in the Southern parts of this Continent: I think that those your Excellency has been so kind as to impart to me are of Such Nature, that it appears to me unavoidable to Impart them with the greatest Speed to the Governor of Havana, for which reason, I have a Vessell ready to go directly to that Port, with the only View of Carrying my Letters to the Said Governor and Captain General, which Vessell, will Still remain here three or four days Longer, with the Object of hearing of the Sailing of said Embarkation and all it’s particulars.

“The Expressions Your Excellency is so kind as to order me to present with to the above Gentln and the Sending of the Letter to Mrs Miralles, I have punctually Obey’d by the present Opportunity” (ALS, DLC:GW). In his reply to Rendon on 1 Nov., GW reported the British embarkation from New York to Virginia (DLC:GW; see also GW to Samuel Huntington, 17 Oct., n.2).

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