George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Benjamin Lincoln, 23 December 1782

Head Quarters Decr 23, 1782.

Dear General

As the Enemy will probably soon leave the Southern States, if they have not done it already, we shall not have the same necessity for Cavalry and Artillery as heretofore; I beg leave therefore to suggest to your Excellency the propriety of confining the recruiting service in Virginia to the Infantry: unless this be done, I think there will be a stop put to filling up the Battalions of Infantry, as it is much easier to recruit for the Cavalry and Artillery than for the Infantry. Besides if we should hereafter find it necessary to augment the Horse and Artillery, it can always be done by draughts from the Infantry without any difficulty, as in that case they are removed into Corps where the service is in general more agreeable, and the pay higher. But it is impossible to draught men from the Horse or Artillery into the Infantry without giving great dissatisfaction. If your Excellency should agree with me in opinion, I have to request that you would write to the Governor of Virginia on the subject. I have the honor to be, with the greatest esteem, your Excellency’s most obedient humble Servt

B. Lincoln

DLC: Papers of George Washington.

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