George Washington Papers

General Orders, 11 November 1780

General Orders

Head Quarters Totowa saturday November 11th 1780

Parole Bennington Countersigns Bath Boon
Watchword Be ready

[Officers] For the Day Tomorrow[:] Brigadier General Glover[,] Colonel Greaton[,] Lieutenant Colonel Basset[,] Major Wallbridge[,] Brigade Major Ashley

Captain Converse is to do the duty of Brigade Major and Inspector to the 2nd Connecticut brigade in the absence of Major Woodbridge.

Lieutenant Henry Cunningham is appointed Quarter-Master to the 2nd Regiment of Artillery from the 21st of June last.1

Regimental Returns to be made immediately of the Invalids in Camp; These Returns to comprehend the weak and sickly men and Such as are unfit for the duties of the Field for want of clothing; the Sergeants and Drums and Fifes are to be included but placed in seperate columns and the old Soldiers and Soldiers for the war are to be in columns distinct from the Levies2 but the whole to make one agregate in the column of Total. The commanding officers of regiments will be responsible that there are no impositions and that the returns are accurate—The same Returns from the Light Infantry—These to be digested into brigade Returns and the whole transmitted to the Orderly Office.3

At the General Court martial whereof Colonel Bailey is president4 Captain Barnard of the 3d Connecticut regiment was tried for “Having knowingly made a false muster of Grove Barnard a soldier of his company.”

The Court are of opinion that the charge against Captain Barnard is not supported.

The Commander in Chief is under the necessity of disapproving the Sentence, as it appears to him incontestibly proved (if any credit is to be given to Muster-Rolls invariably attested for near three years and other evidence) that Grove Barnard was inlisted for the War. Had he been inlisted by another officer it is possible that Captain Barnard might have been deceived by a false return but when it is considered that the soldier in question was his son and inlisted or entered by himself the General cannot conceive it possible that he could have made a mistake and continued in his error so long.

If Grove Barnard is not dismissed from the Service he is to be detained untill further enquiry can be made.5

At a Brigade General court martial the 18th ultimo Lieutenant Colonel Commandant Butler president—Anthony spinhouse soldier in the 7th Pennsylvania regiment taken in the Act of Desertion to the Enemy was tried found Guilty and Sentenced agreeable to the 6th Section Article 1st of the Articles of War (more than two thirds of the Court agreeing thereto) to Suffer Death.6

The Commander in Chief confirms the Sentence.7

A Fatigue Party to parade tomorrow at Guard mounting with their Arms Packs and three days Provisions to repair the roads.

Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1Lt. Col. Ebenezer Stevens had written GW from the artillery park near Totowa on 28 Oct.: “Lieut. Henry Cunningham of the 2d Regt of Artillery, has Acted as Regimental Quarter-Master since the 21st of June last, and given general satisfaction in that station.

“I therefore recommend him to your Excellency to be appointed in General Orders as Quarter Master from the above date” (ALS, DLC:GW; GW’s aide-de-camp Tench Tilghman docketed this letter: “requested to get the Colo. and Major to sign the within recommendation”). For Lt. Henry Cunningham’s departure as quartermaster of the 2d Continental Artillery Regiment, see John Lamb to GW, 7 Jan. 1783 (CSmH).

Henry Cunningham, of New Haven, Conn., joined a New York artillery company as sergeant in 1775 and continued at that rank when it became part of the 2d Continental Artillery Regiment in January 1777. Promoted to lieutenant in May 1779, he subsequently served as regimental quartermaster and transferred to the Corps of Artillery in July 1783. Cunningham left the army in June 1784.

2The enlistments of levies raised earlier in 1780 would expire at the end of the year.

3Directives followed the submission of these returns (see General Orders, 13 Nov.).

4For the establishment of this court-martial, see the general orders for 14 Oct.; see also General Orders, 27 October.

5Grove Barnard (1762–1832), son of Capt. John Barnard, enlisted as a private in the 3d Connecticut Regiment in January 1777 and was discharged upon completing his three-year enlistment in early 1780. A notation in his service records reads: “Returnd D[uring] War through mistake” (DNA: RG 93, Compiled Revolutionary War Military Service Records, 1775–1783, 3d Connecticut Regiment).

6The first article of the sixth section of the articles of war reads: “All officers and soldiers, who having received pay, or having been duly inlisted in the service of the United States, shall be convicted of having deserted the same, shall suffer death, or such other punishment as by a court-martial shall be inflicted” (JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds. Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789. 34 vols. Washington, D.C., 1904–37. description ends , 5:792).

7Anthony Spinhouse (Spinkhouse; born c.1753) enlisted for the war as a private in the 7th Pennsylvania Regiment in May 1777. He apparently escaped execution and was returned in June 1781 by the commander of the 4th Pennsylvania Regiment as a deserter who worked as a tailor and evidently came from Spain. The remarks concluded that Spinhouse “has a great turn for dealing” (Pa. Archives description begins Samuel Hazard et al., eds. Pennsylvania Archives. 9 ser., 138 vols. Philadelphia and Harrisburg, 1852–1949. description ends , 5th ser., 2:1071).

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