George Washington Papers

To George Washington from John Hanson, 28 March 1782

St Croix 28th March 1782

Dear Sir

It is with the greatest Pleasure and Satisfaction that I congratulate you on the happy Events that have happened in America by the Reduction and Captivity of Lord Cornwallis & his Army; it was reasonable to suppose that such an Event would have proved a cautious Lesson to Men who were not lost to all Sense of feeling and humanity and that America would have been left to feel the rising Joys of Peace and Tranquility, and be no more savaged by a sett of Banditti; but my good friend, it is my Duty from a sincere Love and Attachment to my Country and for Affection and friendship for you and all my fellow Citizens, to give you my Opinion upon the Matter from the best Information I can receive from England, Copenhagen and the windward Islands that you may be prepared.

The Resolution of the british Cabinet was no longer to carry on an internal War in America nor to suffer their Armies to march into the Country but to fortify New York and place a strong Garrison there, Charles Town the same, and to occupy again Rhode Island and fortify that, to keep a sufficient number of Cruizers to distress the American Trade, all their Troops extra were to be sent to the West Indies with the heavy Ships; this System which would have been attended with the best Success to us, has been since the arrival of Lord Cornwallis & the Traitor Arnold totally changed, they have jointly impeached Sir Harry Clinton who is recalled, it is said Lord Cornwallis will have the sole Command when exchanged, Arnold is knighted and to have a very large Command, some say of six or seven thousand regular Troops to be employed on purpose for devastation and ruining the Country where he [   ] Connecticut and Virginia are said to be the two States where this cruel Scene is to be acted. An abandoned administration have at last found a Tool in the Parricide Arnold to execute their hell[ish] Plots; but that Almighty Providence which guards Innocence I hope will deliver him into the hands of his much injured Country, and by your being timely cautioned, every one will be prepared to put a stop to his Incursions—You will please to communicate this to our worthy Commander in Chief. If this Information proves of any Utility it will give great Satisfaction to your Sincere friend & humble Servt

John Hanson

DLC: Papers of George Washington.

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