George Washington Papers

To George Washington from William Phillips, 23 December 1780

New York December 23rd 1780


Upon the arrival of the Officers of the Troops of Convention several Memorials were presented to me from some of those remaining with the Troops, containing such reasons as have induced me to comply with their request of being exchanged: I take the liberty of inclosing their names to Your Excellency, hoping you will be so good as to send your orders to Frederick Town in Maryland or elsewhere that such Officers be permitted to come into New York when they shall be immediately exchanged, rank for rank, or by Composition, as the Commissaries General of Prisoners Messrs Loring and Skinner may settle.

Brigadier General Hamilton has written to me a request upon general principles for a number of Officers being exchanged without naming them: if you thought it proper, Sir, to give a general permission for Officers coming to Elizabeth Town, it might save much time and trouble, and I do assure you that whenever Officers arrive in that manner at Elizabeth Town or in New York, they shall be directly exchanged against an equal number of the American Officers Prisoners of War on Long Island, rank for rank, or by Composition; this proposal equally respects the German as the British Officers, and I shall take it as a favour if you will be so good as to give me an immediate answer on this last head, as it will enable me to consult Major General De Reidesel upon what number of his Officers he would wish to release from a long Captivity.

The Commissary General of Prisoners Mr Loring has written upon this subject to Mr Skinner, and whenever any number of Officers arrive under the description I have given, Mr Skinner will have liberty to come into New York to settle their exchanges. I have the honour to be, Sir, Your Excellency’s most obedient most humble Servant

W. Phillips

9th Regiment Captains Sweetenham
Ensign Orchard
Chaplain Money

20th Captain Wemys
Lieutenants [Tornano]
Ensign Greer

21st Captain Brodie
Lieutenants Schagel
2d Lieutenant Cox
Surgeon’s Mate Watson
Chaplain Brown

24th Captain Blake
Lieutenants Steel

47th Regiment Captain Marr
Lieutenant Baldwin
Ensigns Burroughs
Quarter Master Paxton
Surgeon Dobbin
Chaplain Higgenbothom

Canada Companies Lieutenants Degby 53rd
Stordy 31st
Jones 34th

Royl [   ] Surgeon Wylde
Surgeon’s Mate Browne
Hospital Mate Bowen

It is requested there may be added to this List a permission for either Lieutenant Colonels Hill or Lind proceed with the rest.

DLC: Papers of George Washington.

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