George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Friedrich Wilhelm Ludolf Gerhard Augustin, Baron [von] Steuben, 23 March 1781

Williamsburg Virga 23 Mch 1781


I take the liberty to refer your Excellency to the Marquiss Letter of this date for an account of our situation in this quarter.

I only lament that the preparations we had made with so much trouble and expence appear to have proved useless and that so sure a stroke as that on Portsmouth seemed to be should have failed.

General Green in a Letter of the 11th informs me that his success depended greatly on ours and I have reason to believe that the certainty with which I spoke to him of our success accelerated the Engagement of the 15th of which I have just reced the inclosed Account.

From every intelligence I can procure the English fleet have no Troops on board but should a Reinforcement arrive from New York nothing will hinder the Enemy from penetrating further into the Country—they will even be obliged to it to gain subsistence—in this situation Virginia asks Assistance & great part of the people expect it anxiously.

I am very apprehensive that this Invasion will stop all succour from this state to the southern Army—the Magazines will be exhausted All this merits the considerations of Congress & our Allies. I have the honor to be with great respect Your Excellencys most Obedt servant

Steuben Maj: [Genl]

DLC: Papers of George Washington.

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