Head Quarters Prackness Novr 1st 1780
I have the honor to request you will lay before Congress the inclosed memorial, handed to me by the Marquis De la Fayette; one from the Canadian families which have taken refuge from Albany complaining that they have not for some time past received the provisions allowed them by Congress—Another from a Captn Traversy containing a demand for money due while employed by Major General Gates for secret services which the removal of General Gates from the command he held at the time prevented his being paid.
As to the first I have taken the liberty to direct General Clinton who commands at Albany to have the Canadian families furnished with a ration for each individual ‘till further orders, I hope Congress will approve this step.
In the affair of Captn Traversy I could do nothing but refer him to Congress with an assurance that they would satisfy all his just demands. He is the bearer of this letter.
The Case of those Canadians who have attached themselves to our fortune is in general deplorable—and both justice and humanity make it infinitely to be desired, it were in our power to make some better provision for persons who have left their own country, and involved themselves in every kind of distress in compliance with our invitation. There have been of late frequent representations to me of their sufferings, I am persuaded Congress will do every thing their means will permit for the relief of these unhappy people. I have the honor to be With perfect respect & Esteem Your Excellency’s Most Obedt & humle servt
DNA: Item 152, Letters from George Washington, PCC—Papers of the Continental Congress.