George Washington Papers

To George Washington from George Clinton, 8 November 1780

From George Clinton

Poughkeepsie [N.Y.] Novr 8th 1780

Dear Sir

I have received your Excellency’s favor of the 6th Instant.1 The last accounts from the Northwd are of the 3d which have been transmitted.2 If from farther Intelligence it should appear unnecessary for the Troops, ordered up, to proceed, I will immediately inform Genl Heath of it.3

This will be handed to your Excellency by Capt. Molton of Warner’s Regt. As he is an intelligent Man, has been stationed to the Northwd and may be acquainted with the Measures lately pursued on the Grants he will perhaps be able to give your Excellency some Information of those Matters.4 Your Excellency’s Letter giving the Deficiency of the Quota of Troops of this State is also come to hand & will be duly attended to.5 I have the honor to be with great Respect & Esteem Your Excellency’s most Obedt Servt

Geo: Clinton

LS, DLC:GW; Df, N-Ar: Clinton Papers. GW replied to Clinton on 14 November.

2See Clinton to GW, 5 Nov., and notes 1 and 2 to that document.

3Clinton concluded a letter to Maj. Gen. William Heath written at Poughkeepsie on 9 Nov.: “My last Intelligence from Albany would rather induce me to believe that the Enemy who appeared in the neighborhood of the Lakes will not venture at present to penetrate the Country in force: but my Information is not official or so authenticated as to justify halting the Troops on their March to that quarter—Colo. Hay can inform you of some very extraordinary Conduct of Ethan Allen & others of the Grants” (MHi: Heath Papers; see also n.2 above). Heath replied to Clinton from West Point on 13 Nov. with thanks for his “Intelligence from the northward We have no News in this Quarter” (MHi: Heath Papers; see also Heath’s second letter to GW, same date).

4Capt. William Moulton’s intelligence apparently was reduced to writing in an undated document: British major Christopher Carleton had settled a truce with Vermont militia general Ethan Allen to allow consideration “of exchanging some Prisoners which had been taken from the frontiers of said Grants … upon a principle that Vermont” was “a Seperate State” never “guilty of a breach of Faith.” Allen wanted the truce extended “over the Frontiers of New York.” This stipulation caused dissension among Vermont officials who feared “an intrigue which the Enemy meant to improve to distress the Frontiers of New York” in a manner that “would serve to disgust the United States, and ere long the fate of New York Frontiers would recoil upon themselves” (DLC:GW, filed under 17 Nov.; see also Philip Schuyler to GW, 31 Oct.–1 Nov., and notes 4, 7, and 10).

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