Front Page Titles (by Subject) TO HORATIO SHARPE, GOVERNOR OF MARYLAND. - The Writings of George Washington, vol. I (1748-1757)
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TO HORATIO SHARPE, GOVERNOR OF MARYLAND. - George Washington, The Writings of George Washington, vol. I (1748-1757) 
The Writings of George Washington, collected and edited by Worthington Chauncey Ford (New York and London: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1889-1893). Vol. I (1748-1757).
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TO HORATIO SHARPE, GOVERNOR OF MARYLAND.
Will’s Creek, 24 April, 1754.
May it please Your Excellency,
It is with the greatest concern I acquaint you, that Mr. Ward, ensign in Captain Trent’s company, was obliged to surrender his small fortress in the Forks of Monongahela, at the summons of Captain Contrecœur, commander of the French forces who fell down from Venango with a fleet of 360 canoes and battoes, conveying upwards of one thousand men, eighteen pieces of artillery, and large stores of provisions and other necessaries—Mr. Ward, having but an inconsiderable number of men (not exceeding 30, and no cannon to make a proper defence,) was forced to give up the fort on the 17th instant—They suffered him to draw out his men, arms, and working tools, and gave leave that he might retreat to the inhabitants with them. I have heard of your excellency’s great zeal for his majesty’s service, and for all our interests on the present occasion; therefore I am persuaded you will take proper notice of the Indians’ moving speech and think their unshaken fidelity worthy your consideration.
1 I have arrived thus far with a detachment of 159 men; col. Fry with the remainder of the regiments and artillery is daily expected. In the mean time we shall advance slowly across the mountains, making the roads as we march fit for the carriage [of] the great guns &c. and are designed to proceed as far as the mouth of Red Stone Creek which enters the Monongahela about 37 miles above the fort (the French have taken) from whence we have water carriage down the river; there is a store house built by the Ohio Company at the place, which for the present may serve as a receptacle for our ammunition and provisions.
1 Besides the French herein mentioned, we have credible information that another party are coming up Ohio. We also have intelligence that 600 of the Chippoways and Ottoway Indians are marching down Scioto Creek to join them.
I ought first to have begged pardon of your excellency for this liberty of writing, as I am not happy enough to be ranked among those of your acquaintance. It was the glowing zeal I owe my country that influenced me to impart these advices and my inclination prompted me to do it to you as I know you are solicitous for the public weal and warm in this interesting cause—that should rouse from the lethargy we have fallen into the heroick spirit of every free-born English man to attest the rights and privileges of our king (if we don’t consult the benefit of ourselves) and resque from the invasions of a usurping enemy, our Majesty’s property, his dignity, and land.
I hope Sir, you will excuse the freeness of my expressions, they are the pure sentiments of the heart of him who is with all imaginable regard and due respect, &c.
N. B.—I herewith have enclosed for your Excellency’s perusal a copy of the Summons from the French officers, and also the Indian’s speech which was delivered to and brought by Mr. Ward.
[1 ]Of this letter only the two paragraphs marked1 are given in the Précis des Faits. The entire letter was printed in the Baltimore Repository for March, 1811, and again in the Magazine of American History, in 1881. A letter of similar import was sent to Governor Hamilton, of Pennsylvania, which was immediately laid before the legislature of Pennsylvania. A bill was then pending for a grant of ten thousand pounds for the King’s use, but the Governor was compelled to reject it because it proposed to tax the proprietary estate.—Votes of the Pennsylvania Assembly, vol. iv., p. 313.