George Washington Papers

To George Washington from James Duane, 7 April 1782

Manour Livingston 7th April 1782.

My dear General,

It is with great Pleasure that I find your Excellencys arrival at Newburgh announced in the publick Papers. The Circumstances of my Family prevent me from paying you my Respects at present: but the visit shall only be deferred till the Impediment is removed. I long, my Dear Sir, to see you: to congratulate you on the glory which you have acquired the last Campaign: and to felicitate with you on the decisive Consequences which a Victory in all Respects so brilliant, and of such vast magnitude, must produce to our Country.

I have spent some time with our Legislature and embraced the Opportunity to inculcate, in the most cogent Terms, the necessity of strengthning your hands; so that you may be enabled to strike the Enemy before they recover from their Consternation; and tirminate the war by a vigorous Campaign. They will, I am perswaded, leave nothing unattempted to fill up their Continental Battallions, and afford some P[or]tection to our desolated Frontiers. Fully perswaded that the plan for the administration of our Afairs, on which I have hazarded my political Reputation, will be wisely conducted, and produce the most salutary Effects; I feel myself hurt that any Proposal from the Financier shoud be checked or disappointed: but his pecuniary Requisitions from this State are, I fear, far beyond the Reach of our utmost Resources. This at least is the Opinion of the most zealous Judicious, and best informed, and their Reasons appeard to be so well grounded as to preclude Sollicitation.

If any thing interesting from the Southward shoud transpire you will oblige me by communicating it. I put no Confidence in the Reports of a voluntary Retreat from those states; at least from Charles Town. It is my Opinion that the Enemy will rather commit that Garrison to the Chapter of Chances; than give such a palpable Proof of their weakness to all Europe. Indeed they are already too much humbled and distressed not to think seriously of patching up a Peace; but not to reckon upon the inflexible obstinacy which has all along marked the british Councils, they know too well the advantages, in a negociation, of having in their hands the Capital and Sea port of a rich State, to part with it unconstrained.

Be pleased to present the respectful Compliments of every Branch of this Family to Mrs Washington; and to accept of their Joint wishes for your Glory and Prosperity.

I only write in the general Voice of my Country when I assure you that I am with the most perfect Esteem and the most affectionate attachment—Dear Sir—Your Excellencys most obedient & most humble Servant

Jas Duane

DLC: Papers of George Washington.

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