Front Page Titles (by Subject) GENERAL SCHUYLER TO JAY. - The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, vol. 1 (1763-1781)
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GENERAL SCHUYLER 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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GENERAL SCHUYLER TO JAY.
Saratoga, November 6th, 1777.
My Dear Sir:
When I did myself the pleasure to write you on the 17th ult., I was not apprized of the enemy’s progress up Hudson’s River, nor of the barbarous devastation they have been guilty of committing at Kingston, and other places in the vicinity. It is no consolation to me that I have so many fellow-sufferers; I feel, however, a very sensible one, in the fate which has attended General Burgoyne.
Is it not probable that the enemy, in a future campaign, will make another attempt to sail up Hudson River? If they do, and at the same time attack the Eastern States, will there not be a want of bread in those States? As in that case little or none can be conveyed to that quarter, would it not be prudent to form very considerable magazines of flour on the east side of the Green Mountains? and does it not appear necessary to throw such obstructions in Hudson River, as to render it impracticable for shipping to penetrate beyond the highlands? Perfectly to obstruct the navigation of Hudson River is certainly a very arduous task, but not attended with so many difficulties as may at first view be imagined. And I am persuaded, that a spirited director, at the head of four hundred men, would completely prepare every thing in the course of the winter, so as to sink the works in the course of six weeks after the ice shall have quitted the river. The British engineers and officers confess, that if the works on the Lake, at Ticonderoga had been completed, it would have been impossible to have opened a passage in less than ten days, if they had been possessed of every requisite for such a business, and if not the least molestation had been given them. Very early in the war I urged the necessity of securing Hudson River; I have repeated my wish more than once, and I shall be extremely happy to see a business completely executed, on which I am persuaded much of the safety of the United States in general, and this in particular, depends. If I had any interest with the Senate and Assembly, I should venture to address them on the subject; but as I have not, I must leave it to you, if you are in sentiment with me on the necessity of the work, to mention it to your friends in both Houses.
As I shall shortly be altogether out of public life, I am earnestly engaged in building me a house at this place, that I may be as far out of the noise and bustle of the great world as possible. I am confident (provided we repel the enemy), that I shall enjoy more true felicity in my retreat, than ever was experienced by any man engaged in public life. My hobby-horse has long been a country life; I dismounted with reluctance, and now saddle him again with a very considerable share of satisfaction (for the injurious world has not been able to deprive me of the best source of happiness, the approbation of my own heart), and hope to canter him gently on to the end of the journey of life.
When Congress will send for me to inquire into my conduct, I cannot even make a guess at. I have entreated that it may be soon, and respectfully observed, that from my past services I ought not to remain longer than needs must be in the disagreeable situation in which I now stand.
Where are you lodged—and where is your father’s family? Can I be of any service? Some tory tenants of mine have lost fine farms, either for grain or stock, between this and Albany; two or three of them in good fence, with small tenements on them. If these or any of them can be of any use, I am sure they are much at your service. What further buildings are necessary may be cheaply and speedily erected, as the frame of a whole house can be sawed, boards and every other material procured at the cheapest rates. I will not let any of these farms, except such as I am confident would not do for you, until I have the pleasure of hearing from you; or rather, until I have had the happiness of giving you a bed in the new house, which I began upon on the 1st instant, and which will be under cover, and have two rooms finished by the 15th instant, unless the weather should prove remarkably wet: but observe that it is only a frame house, sixty feet long, twenty-one broad, and two stories high, filled in with brick.
I hope pains will be taken to recruit our army; we ought not to grow negligent, and trust too much to our good fortune: there is danger in too much confidence, and I apprehend that Britain, like a desperate gamester whose affairs are on the brink of ruin, will make a bold push to retrieve the loss, if yet it is possible.
Pray make my compliments to the governor, the chancellor, speaker, R. Yates, and such other of my friends as are in your quarter. I do not mention Morris, because I hear he has gone to relieve Mr. Duane. It is rather hard upon the latter to be obliged to such a constant attendance. Adieu: my best wishes attend you through life.
I am, dear sir, with great esteem and affection,