George Washington Papers

From George Washington to George Clinton, 13 January 1781

To George Clinton

Head Quarters New Windsor Janry 13th 1781

⟨Dear Sir

Since the information Col.⟩ Humphrys gave your ⟨Excellency by my direction1—⟩some circumstances have ⟨been communicated by⟩ General Wayne (a Copy of w(hose Letter is in⟩closed) which give a very different ⟨complexion to⟩ the affair. Instead of deliveri⟨ng up the⟩ Emissaries from the Enemy, as I had been ⟨prematurely advised,⟩ the Mutineers have only reported ⟨them to⟩ General Wayne, still keeping them in ⟨their⟩ own hands2—This conduct, instead of s⟨hutting the⟩ door to negotiation with the Enemy, seem⟨s to⟩ carry a threat, that if we do not comply ⟨with⟩ their terms, they know from what quar⟨ter⟩ they can obtain protection and redress.

Previous to the receipt of this ⟨last⟩ intelligence, I had ordered ⟨a Detachment to⟩ be in readiness to march from the Tro⟨ops⟩ in this Vicinity, which is still held un⟨der⟩ marching Orders.3 But I am extremely em⟨barrassed,⟩ and waiting with the utmost anxiety for ⟨further⟩ advices. Under these circumstances, I nee⟨d not⟩ enumerate my choice of difficulties from ⟨every quarter, among which, the perplexities arising on the score of Provision are not the most inconsiderable. Should it become⟩ absolutely necessary ⟨for the Detach⟩ment to March, the Garrison ⟨of West⟩ Point, you must be sensible, will ⟨be left⟩ in a very weak situation4—I wish ⟨ther⟩efore to be informed by your Excellency whether any force of Militia could be thrown into the Garrison, in what time it could be done upon such an emergency, and what Numbers Might be depended upon—I should be much obliged by having Your Answer as soon as is convenient.5 I have the honor to be With great esteem & respect Your Excellencys Most Obedt Humble Servant

Go: Washington

LS (partially burned), in David Humphreys’s writing, N-Ar: Clinton Papers; Df, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW. Mutilated portions of the LS are supplied in angle brackets from the draft, which Humphreys also penned. The LS is addressed to Clinton at “Poughkeepsie, or Albany.”

1See Humphreys to Clinton, 11 Jan., found at Continental Congress Committee on the Pennsylvania Line to GW, 7 Jan., source note.

4At this point on the draft, the following marked-out text, in GW’s writing, appears: “on which acct I am not more anxious than on the score of Provision.”

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