George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Colonel William Malcom, 16 October 1780

To Colonel William Malcom

Head Quarters near Passaic Falls
16th October 1780

Dear Sir

I have recd your favors of the 18th and 22d of Septemr and 3d instant. I am obliged by the exertions you had been making to throw a present supply of provisions into Fort schuyler, and congratulate you upon your success against the party of savages which opposed you in your march up—A Company of Artillery from Colo: Lambs Regt is ordered to releive Capt. Browns. Warners Regiment will be incorporated the 1st January. It will not therefore be worth while to remove it from its present station, as its time of existence will be so short—Spencers will also undergo the same reform.1

I am not sufficiently acquainted with the situation of the Country above to give an opinion upon the propriety of evacuating Fort schuyler and establishing a post lower down. At any rate this could not be done before the new post was in sufficient forwardness to receive the Garrison immediately upon the evacuation of the old, and this, I take it, under our present circumstances, would be a work of considerable time—It is a matter which will much depend upon the prevailing sentiment in the State, which is more immediately interested in the measure, and as you have mentioned your opinion upon the subject to His Excellency the Governor, he will I imagine take the necessary steps to have the measure adopted should it be deemed eligible.2

In your letter of the 8th of September you say you shall for the present throw about 350 Men into the Fort, whose times of service will expire the first of December. Be pleased to let me know as soon as possible, whether you have made any alteration since, that I may govern myself in sending up the Releif—Your command must of consequence expire with the service of your Men. I shall be obliged to send up a Continental Regiment to garrison the post, and the Colonel must in course have the command.3 I am persuaded you will notwithstanding take as effectual measures to lay in a winter supply of provision—Wood and other necessaries, as if you yourself were to remain. I am &.

Df, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW. For the arrival of this letter on 29 Oct., see Malcom’s reply to GW, that date (DLC:GW).

1For congressional reform of the Continental army, see Samuel Huntington to GW, 26 Oct., n.1.

2Malcom qualified his opinion that Fort Schuyler, N.Y., should be abandoned when he wrote GW on 8 October.

3GW selected Lt. Col. Frederick Weissenfels’s 4th New York Regiment (see GW to William Heath, 18 Oct., found at Heath to GW, 17 Oct., n.4).

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