Saratoga May 21st 1781
I had the honor to write Your Excellency about two hours ago since which the person whose Intelligence was transmitted me with their letter of the 15th [inst.], has sent me the Inclosed No. 1. and No. 2, the deserter mentioned in the latter is the one whose Information I transmitted this Morning-- Besides what he said to Bell and Partlo, who are both Tories I find that he has been with one other notoriously disaffected and with one whom he beleives to be so, to both of which he has declared that the British & Royalists at Crown point and Tyondaroga amounted to four thousand and that they would shortly appear here and on the Mohawk river.
No. 3 is an original letter from Ethan Allen; there is little probability that the Enemy would declare any Intentions they might have with regard to me & the persons he mentions, and It appears to me only as an Introduction to the last paragraph of his letter, whether he is sincere to whether he Intended to [ ] me relax from any enquiries which he may inspect I am [prosecuting] I know not. I am Dear Sir with perfect respect and affection Your Excellencys Obedt Humble Servant
A man who has found as he say’d four Brass mortars asked me what reward he might Expect, unable to Inform him and he unwilling to discover without some certainty, I promised him twenty five dollars, and any thing more your Excellency might allow, he has since taken up one of five Inches which will be sent down and expects to raise the others as soon as the waters (which are now very much [out]) shall Subside, as I have no money permit me to Intreat Your Excellency to order him payments, the man thinks he shall be able to find three brass feild pieces of which he also had Information.
DLC: Papers of George Washington.
Bennington 15th May 1781
A flag which I sent last fall to the British Commanding Officer at Crown point and which were there detained near one month on their Return gave me to understand that they at several different times threatned to Captivate your person, said that it had been in their power to have taken some of your family the last Campain, but that they had an Eye to your self.
I must Confess that Such Conversation before my flag, seams rather flummery than real premedicated design. However that there was Such Conversation I do not dispute which you will make such Improvement of as you see fitt.
I shall Conclude with Assuring your Honor that Notwithstanding the late reports or rather Surmises of my Corrisponding with the Enemy to the prejudice of the united States it is wholly without foundation. I am Sir with due Respect your Honours Most Obet Hume sert
Saratoga 21 May 1781
on my Return to the frontier I found to my Surprise that Mr Serwood was not Gone but one Gillerew Conducted the Recrutes then Colected seven in Number of them and one Day last week 1 Skout and Thomas Loveless who had been to Palmertown met in the Scotch pattin and went off with their Recrutes 23 in Number both parties went by the west side of Lake George Sherwood Expected to march the same Road last Night his Number Unknown whether John Gillis is Going with him or not I Cant still understand I was Informd yesterday by a friend to goverment that there is a party of 4 or 500 Loialests and Indians that is gone to the South west of albany to begin this [burning] and that there is fifteen hundred More now at Ticonderoga which are to Come in by the way of Palmertown on the same business and that Albany and [Skenestown] is thier main Object Saratoga Barracks Included this last Inteligence was brought to Kingsbury by one Mr Shipman from Cambridge who says he knows of 3 boats Landing men Since Sherwood some of which parties are gone to [Livingston Mannor] and the Rest pretty well Downwards all Recruiting matters are said to goe on with the grants in the same [Stupid] Road they Did.
the Desarter that Come in last Night I Understand has told many Diferent Stories on the Road to [Some Bell], he says there is 4 Sail of Shiping at Crown point and a Draft from Every Core in Canady and their Troops and Loialists Amount to 7 or 8000 and to Partlo a Much Less Number and to Others I Larn he tells quite Different.