George Washington Papers

From George Washington to William Heath, 20 April 1781

Head Quarters New Windsor April 20th 1781

Dear Sir

It was exceedingly proper to order the men who left the Detachment under the Marquis, to be confined—if the practice should prevail, severe examples must be made—but if it ceases here, and the number is small, it may not be worth the while to send them back, (Altho there should not be evidence sufficient to convict them here with certainty) lest the fear of Punishment should induce them to a final desertion, on their route to those Troops.

By the Proceedings of the Court of Enquiry on Captain Pope, there appears to be such information respecting the conduct of the Officer who was on Guard at the time the Prisoners made their escape, that it is necessary he should be put in Arrest, and brought before a Court Martial, for being absent from his Guard, and neglect of duty in suffering the Prisoners to escape from the Guard under his Command—This you will be pleased to direct accordingly. With great regard & esteem I am Dear Sir Your Most Obedient Humble Servant

Go: Washington

P.S. I thank you for the News Paper You forwarded by Major Gibbs.

MHi: Heath Papers.

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