George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Lieutenant General Rochambeau, 10 December 1780

To Lieutenant General Rochambeau

Head Quarters New Windsor 10th Decemr 1780


I have recd your Excellency’s favors of the 14th 16th 24th and 27th of November and 1st of this month. In apology for suffering so many of your letters to remain so long unanswered, I must assure you, that I have been constantly employed, since I broke up my Camp near passaic Falls, in visiting the winter Cantonments of the Army between Morristown and this place.1

I have experienced the highest satisfaction in the Visits which the Chevalier Chattellus—Viscount Noialles—Count de Damas—Count de Custine and Marquis de Laval have done me the honor to make me. I have only to regret that their stay with me was so short.2 I unfortunately missed seeing the Count de deux ponts, who had left my quarters, on his way to Philadelphia, before I arrived at them. I, however, flatter myself, that I shall have the pleasure of seeing him on his return.3

I very much approve of your intention of quartering the second Division in Connecticut rather than in Massachusetts. The troops will certainly be more convenient to the probable scene of operations.

I shall withdraw the Chain of our Dragoons, and shall in future send my dispatches to the Duke Lauzun at Lebanon as your Excellency desires.4

I wish it were in my power to furnish your Excellency with the New York papers; but as our communication with that place is very irregular, I only obtain them accidentally. I now inclose you one, which contains nothing material, but the account of the late dreadful Hurricane in the West Indies.5

I take the opportunity of sending this by Colonel Fleury, who returns to your Army. I was made very happy in again seeing that amiable and valuable Officer, whose services I have experienced upon so many occasions.6 I have the Honor to be with very great Respect Your Excellency’s Most obt and humble Servant

Go: Washington

LS, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, CtY-BR:R; Df, DLC:GW; Rochambeau’s French translation, CtY-BR:R; LB, in French, DLC: Rochambeau Papers, vol. 7; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1For these winter encampments, see GW to Samuel Huntington, 28 Nov., and n.12.

For Rochambeau’s letter to GW dated 24 Nov., see GW to Rochambeau, 16 Nov., n.4.

2See GW to Huntington, 27 Nov., and the source note to that document.

3For the visit of Colonel Deux-Ponts, see GW to Rochambeau, 20 Jan. 1781 (CtY-BR:R).

4See Rochambeau to GW, 1 Dec. 1780.

Brigadier General Lauzun wrote GW from Lebanon, Conn., on 21 Dec.: “Ambitious, and happy to obey to your Excellency’s orders, I Send Immediately the paket directed to the Count de Rochambeau” (ALS, MH: Sparks). The contents of the packet have not been identified.

5The enclosure has not been identified, but the same account dated 7 Oct. of the hurricane’s impact on Jamaica appears in The Royal Gazette (New York) for 29 Nov., The Royal American Gazette (New York) for 30 Nov., and the supplement to the New-York Gazette: and the Weekly Mercury for 4 Dec.; see also Rochambeau to GW, 27 November.

6Lieutenant Colonel Fleury had traveled from Newport with other French officers (see Rochambeau to GW, 16 Nov.).

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