George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Brigadier General Anthony Wayne, 12 January 1781

From Brigadier General Anthony Wayne

Trent Town 12th Jany 1781

My Dear General

I wrote you yesterday morning by Mr Craig, since which I was honored with yours of the 8th Instant,1 it affords me great Consolation that the troops of the Other States have not yet attempted to follow the example of the Pennsa Line.

When we Offered the terms Inclosed you the 4th Instant we had in View the General Line of the Army, & no Circumstance or Consideration could ever Induce us to Commit the Honor of America, by any unworthy, or unjust concessions to a body of Mutineers however formidable.2

The Conditions now made & agreed to are the Joint Act of the Committee of Congress & the Governor of Pennsa to whom the former Deligated their powers.

The Mutineers as yet hold Command; but we have expectations of Reclaiming it (in appearance at least) either this Evening or tomorrow morning, however I believe it will be the most advisable Measure to Disolve the Line, & Collect it anew, as well and expidiciously as possible.

The two Spies were executed yesterday Pursuant to their Sentance, the Sergt expressed great anxiety to see me before he died—I did not see him—but it was his last Injunction to Inform me that the Intelligence he gave me the preceeding evening, was literally true.3

I must therefore reiterate my Request that you would be well Guarded (& not commit yourself (so much as you used to do) to the Machinations of Assasins or the Attempts of Partizans[)]. I have the honor to be with true Esteem your Excellency’s Most Obet & very Hume Sert

Anty Wayne

I don’t mean by the Dissolution of the line—their being totally Discharged the Service but—to get rid of the Sergts & furlough such of the men as desire it—& Canton the bones of Regiments—in Different parts of the State.

ALS, DLC:GW; ADfS, PHi: Wayne Papers. The postscript does not appear on the draft. A note on the cover of the ALS reads: “⅌ Capt. McIntire.” GW’s aide-de-camp David Humphreys wrote on the docket of the ALS: “Not Ansd.”

3For this intelligence—a plot to capture GW, see Wayne to GW, 11 January. For the executions, see Continental Congress Committee on the Pennsylvania Line to GW, 10–11 Jan., and notes 3 and 7.

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