George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Major General William Heath, 11 January 1781

From Major General William Heath

Garrison West Point Jany 11th 1781

Dear General

I have ordered a Detachment to consist of two Battalions of 250 rank & file each, properly Officered from the Massachusetts Line. One Battalion of 250 rank & file from the Connecticutt Line—One Battalion of 100 rank & file from the New Hampshire Line—and one Battallion of 200 rank & file, half from Colonel Hazens regiment, & the other half from the Detachment on the Lines, in the whole five Battalions to be held in the most perfect readiness to march on the shortest notice, with four days provission cooked &ca. Major General Howe having the Command by seniority I have given it to him—the whole submitted to your Excellency. I have the honor to be With the greatest respect Your Excellencys Most Obedient Servant

W. Heath

LS, DLC:GW; ADfS, MHi: Heath Papers. Evidently summing the numbers of the battalions, GW wrote “250 250 250 100 200 1050” in a column on the lower left side of the LS.

GW ordered this detachment formed in his meeting on this date at West Point with Heath and the senior officers in the area (see GW to Heath, 10 Jan., and the source note to that document). If necessary, GW planned to use the detachment to suppress the mutiny in the Pennsylvania line (see GW’s first letter to Heath, 12 Jan.).

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