George Washington Papers

General Orders, 22 February 1781

General Orders

[New Windsor] Thursday February 22d 1781

Parole. Countersigns. [  ]

Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

On this date, GW’s aide-de-camp Alexander Hamilton wrote Col. Samuel Blachley Webb: “From different occurrences since your letter to the General arrived, I have seen no favourable moment to present it—It shall try its fortune to day and you shall hear from me tomorrow. Assure yourself that whatever depends on me shall be done” (CtY: Webb Family Collection—Samuel B. Webb Papers). Webb’s letter to GW has not been found.

On 2 March, Hamilton wrote Webb from headquarters: “With some difficulty, the General has in part consented to your wishes. Col Hazen is going to Philadelphia on business; the small number of Colonels now with the army makes him unwilling to let you be absent till he returns. When he returns, if you can obtain General Heaths permission it will be agreeable to The General. You may make use of this letter to him. … I Wish I could have got this matter placed on a better footing” (Hamilton Papers description begins Harold C. Syrett et al., eds. The Papers of Alexander Hamilton. 27 vols. New York, 1961–87. description ends , 2:582). GW left on 2 March for Rhode Island (see his letter to Rochambeau, that date).

Webb had requested that his furlough to settle his accounts and take care of family matters might be extended past 1 April. Before receiving Hamilton’s reply of 2 March, Webb had left camp without seeing GW and became concerned that GW might treat his departure as disobedience of orders (see Webb to William Heath, 3 March, and to Samuel Holden Parsons, 7 March, in Ford, Webb Correspondence and Journals description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford, ed. Correspondence and Journals of Samuel Blachley Webb. 3 vols. New York, 1893–94. description ends , 2:324–29).

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