Front Page Titles (by Subject) ROBERT TROUP 1 TO JAY. - The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, vol. 1 (1763-1781)
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ROBERT TROUP 1 TO JAY. - John Jay, The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, vol. 1 (1763-1781) 
The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, ed. Henry P. Johnston, A.M. (New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1890-93). Vol. 1 (1763-1781).
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ROBERT TROUP1 TO JAY.
Camp 3 miles above Still-Water,
My Dear Sir:
On the 9th Instant about 8 o’clock A.M. the army marched from Van Shaack’s Islands, & London’s Ferry; at 3 in the afternoon it incamped at Forts Mills, and early next morning reached Still-water.
We took Post on the Heights, began to open Communications and throw up a few small redoubts principally with a view of amusing the Enemy. On the 11th we recd. Intelligence that Gen. Burgoyne had called in his Out-posts, collected his Carriages, and was making every Preparation to advance. The General conceiving the Ground we occupied was not calculated for Defence went to reconnoitre & 3 Miles in Front discovered a Spot which fully answered his wishes.—On the 12, he marched the Army upon it and made the necessary dispositions for Action. But in this he was disappointed.
Gen. Burgoyne, like his Colleague, seems to be exceedingly embarrassed. For some time past, he has had his Army in Point, without making a single Motion, till to-day. By the Information of our Scouts he has brought the main Body of his Army to Saratoga. They declare they distinctly counted 800 Tents on the West Side of the River near General Schuyler’s House. From this Circumstance, with a variety of others we conclude he means to attack us. Should he be so rash as to adopt this Plan, I think we shall end the War in the Northern Department. I speak with Confidence because our Army is truly respectable, & every thing wears the most flattering aspect. We have now on the Ground 9000 Men, well armed, in good Health, high Spirits, & eager for Action. The horrid Barbarities committed by the Enemy, & the Sacredness of our Cause seem to have stamped in every Countenance the glorious words—conquer or die. Permit me to add to these considerations the Strength of our post. There are two Roads only which lead to our Encampment. The one to our Flank by Saratoga Lake, thro a thick marshy swamp; and the other to our Front along Hudsons River. I am inclined to think they will advance on both in order to divide our attention. In the former their Artillery will be of little service; we have obstructed the Pass already by felling Trees, and shall secure it properly to-morrow by fortifying a commanding Eminence. The latter is also favorable to our Designs. Within Musket Shot of it, on the left, is a Ridge which extends very far; this the Riflemen, Infantry, & a large Detachment of the Army will take Possession of, about 4 or 5 Miles in Front, to gall the Enemy sorely before they engage the Main Body. In one word—if the action becomes general, they will be obliged to contend with Hills, Rocks, Gullies & Trees on all sides. I have impartially considered the different accounts relative to the number of the Enemy. I make a large allowance when I estimate them at 7000. These compose a motley Crew of Englishmen, Germans, & Tories quarrelling with each other & discontented with the Service. From Men void of Principle, and destitute of Harmony can Victory be expected?
Reason & Justice say no. Gen. Lincoln is near Skeensborough with a numerous Body of Militia. The object of his Expedition is to push in the Enemy’s Rear.—This he will completely effect, if the delicate, polite, & humane Colonel of the Queen’s Dragoons Attempts to get more elbow Room.
This much for Military Matters.
When I saw Mrs. Jay last I promised to write to her. I am extremely sorry the great Hurry of Business will not permit me to enjoy that Pleasure. I beg you will present my best respects to her, at the same Time apologise for me. How is your little Boy? Does he grow cleverly? Can he talk so as to be understood? Pray, let me hear from your Family, when you have nothing of more Importance to do.—I am in perfect Health, & hope I shall not, in the critical hour, disgrace you, or any of my good Friends.
I am, my dear Sir,