George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Lieutenant General Rochambeau, 19 October 1780

From Lieutenant General Rochambeau

Newport, Octr 19. 1780


I receive this moment Your Excellency’s Letter of the 14th inst.1 I have nothing new to send word of to you, The Frigate and the Person you know of, are ready to go away,2 and the Ch. de Ternay waits only for a set in Wind,3 and a pretty fresh one to make them sail away. I beg of Your Excellency to send the inclosed Letter to the Ch. de La Luzerne.4 We have had again a Visit of the Indians, of those who Live about Penobscot. We gave them the same reception, made them the same speech as to former countrymen.5 As soon as the houses will be in order, I will make use of Your Excellency’s permission to put the Troops in Newport.6 As to the Lauzun Cavalry, I believe that I shall be obliged to send it in Connecticut. The neighbouring places to Providence having raised their forage to an extravagant price, and I have desired Colonel Wadsworth whom Your Excellency Loves, and whom I esteem vastly, to negotiate that business with Governor Trumbull.7 That will Leave Providence empty against the arrival of the 2d Division.8 I am with respect sir, Your Excellency’s Most obedient humble servant

Le Cte de Rochambeau

LS, DLC:GW; LB, in French, DLC: Rochambeau Papers, vol. 7; LB, in French, DLC: Rochambeau Papers, vol. 8.

1For GW to Rochambeau, 14 Oct., see Rochambeau to GW, 8 Oct., n.4.

2Rochambeau probably alludes to his son and aide-de-camp, vicomte de Rochambeau (see his letter to GW, 5 Oct., n.2).

3In the letter-book versions, “Vent fait” (regular, stable wind), replaces the preceding three words.

4The letter-book versions indicate that Rochambeau means this letter rather than an enclosure.

5The letter-book versions identify “former countrymen” as previous Indian visitors (see Rochambeau to GW, 31 Aug.). The Providence Gazette; and Country Journal for 18 Oct. reported that “six Chiefs” were among the recent Indians who came to Rhode Island.

6Rochambeau refers to winter quarters (see his letter to GW, 8 Oct.).

7Jeremiah Wadsworth had written Connecticut governor Jonathan Trumbull, Sr., from Newport on 7 Oct. about supplies for the French at Rhode Island (see Trumbull Papers description begins The Trumbull Papers. 4 vols. Boston, 1885-1902. In Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society, 5th ser., vols. 9–10; 7th ser., vols. 2–3. description ends , 3:146–47; see also Wadsworth to Nathanael Greene, 23 Oct., 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 , 6:428–29).

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