philadelphia this 17th january—83
as I was just perusing a letter of your’s excellency’s aid camp to mr jackson, colonel armand stept in the board of war. we had a long conference on the subject now extant before you—it appears that the colonel has been grossly and maliciously misinform’d as to my situation. both the facts which he acquainte you with are false and untrue, for I neither have resign’d nor receive a gratifiction from Congrès last year—but just took the opportunity of my being a prisoner to go and visit a cherish’d family and belov’d parents whose’s sight I had allready being depriv’d six years. the colonel after the inquiries made on the subject of his informations to your excellency is conscious of his having being misrepresent’d and as far as I can perceive is only prevent’d from granting my request on account of the seeming discouteus of some of his officers who would loose a rank by my reasuming a due Command.
such reasons I dare flatter myself can not induce your excellency to injure an officer under my predicament.
because a prisoner when the arrangement was made or because my being now arrang’d, would for a while retard the promotion of an other officer—am I to give up a right of an undoubtd justice? is it any solicity and sense in the manner of arguing of armands corps—if capt: segond says they comes in under the resolution of congres, all the junior officers loose a rank—but is Capt: segond to be left out and derang’d merely for favouring the promotion of an officer who has not surely serv’d so long as capt. segond in a critical time where service was certainly harder than it ever’ll be and is a lieutt to be promot’d to a company in prejudice of the right owner of that company because a prisoner.
you are the judge dear general and your opinion on the subject I look upon as a sentence—but I hope before to determine my case you’ll be Kind enough to explore the differents means which have been employ’d to misrepresent my case before the colonel and your excellency—my conduct in this occassion has been open to all and I dare believe irreprochable.
my Case is shortly this the remains of poulauski’s legion are by a resolv’d of congres to be incorporatd into armand’s the officers in proportion to the soldiers; are the senior officers to be derang’d in preference to the juniors in the arrangement? as the [ ] office of pulauski’s should I not come in first? and if not now by my being a prisoner have I not an undoupt’d right to do it when ever exchang’d? without prejudicing any of my younger camarads as they seems to pretend it. are the persons in charlestown who during the carolinian exile took possession of their houses, entitld to refuse of giving them up now because present possesors of it? if not-- ought an oficer who during my captivity as assumed a command of mine, have the least objection in relinquishing of it at my being liberatd? altho a prisoner I still did belong to pulauski’s and if that corps is incorporat’d I certainly have an undubitable right of being also incorporat’d.
be Kind enough dear general to acquainte me with the proceedings of colonel armand in this case that I may not be tried—unheard. the colonel is now in philadelphia and the matter may the more easily be settl’d.
I see the colonel often but will as much as possible avoid of dis[cuting] with the least passion a subject which your excellency is the only proper judge of; Congres having in this particular resolv’d vested in you the power of approving col: armand’s arrangement of our corps—I have the honor to be with the greatest consideration your excellencys most humble and obed. servant
DLC: Papers of George Washington.