George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Samuel Huntington, 14 February 1781

From Samuel Huntington

Philadelphia February 14. 1781


By Letters just come to hand from Mr Carmichael at Madrid, I am informed that the Son of Count de rochambeau is safe arrived in France.1

Our last reports from Virginia say that the British were fortifying at Portsmouth, that their Operations indicated a Design to take Post there.

How far Credit ought to be given to the Account contained in the Paper enclosed, that all the Shiping & Troops in the Chesapeake are ordered to leave the Bay & repair to New York, I am unable to determine; but ardently wish that Monsr des Touches might be in Circumstances to make them a Visit before they get out of the Bay.2 I have the Honor to be with the highest respect your Excellency’s most obedient & most humble Servant

Sam. Huntington

LS, DLC:GW. GW replied to Huntington on 26 Feb., postscript.

1For more on William Carmichael’s letters of 28 Nov. and 19 Dec. 1780 to the Committee for Foreign Affairs, read in Congress on 12 Feb. 1781, see Daniel Carroll to Thomas Sim Lee, 13 Feb., in Smith, Letters of Delegates description begins Paul H. Smith et al., eds. Letters of Delegates to Congress, 1774–1789. 26 vols. Washington, D.C., 1976–2000. description ends , 16:707–8. For the mission of the vicomte de Rochambeau, see GW to Henry Knox, 10 Feb. (first letter), n.4.

2The enclosed newspaper has not been identified. The report was false. The expedition under the command of British brigadier general Benedict Arnold had not been recalled to New York City. For the dispatch of warships to Chesapeake Bay to intercept the British ships supporting Arnold’s operations, see Destouches to GW, 7 February.

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