Front Page Titles (by Subject) TO MAJOR-GENERAL HEATH. - The Writings of George Washington, vol. VII (1778-1779)
The Online Library of Liberty
A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.
Search this Title:
TO MAJOR-GENERAL HEATH. - George Washington, The Writings of George Washington, vol. VII (1778-1779) 
The Writings of George Washington, collected and edited by Worthington Chauncey Ford (New York and London: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1890). Vol. VII (1778-1779).
About Liberty Fund:
Liberty Fund, Inc. is a private, educational foundation established to encourage the study of the ideal of a society of free and responsible individuals.
The text is in the public domain.
Fair use statement:
This material is put online to further the educational goals of Liberty Fund, Inc. Unless otherwise stated in the Copyright Information section above, this material may be used freely for educational and academic purposes. It may not be used in any way for profit.
TO MAJOR-GENERAL HEATH.
I wrote to you yesterday enclosing the Resolve of Congress for the removal of the troops of the Convention to Virginia. I find, upon perusing the Resolve more attentively, that Sir Henry Clinton had, & by the Resolve of the 11 of Septr., recited in that of the 15 Inst.—the choice of either granting passports to transport Flour by Water, or to supply the troops himself by the 5th Inst. If neither has been complied with, then the removal is to take place. The first request we know has never been granted, and I imagine no steps have been taken to supply the troops from New York or else where. If there have agreeable to the Letter and Spirit of the Resolution they are to remain where they now are. If not, they are to be sent forward in the manner pointed out in mine of yesterday.1
I have certain advices that the fleet left Sandy Hook the 19th and 20th. The first division consisted of upwards of one hundred and twenty sail, of which fifteen were of the line and ten or twelve frigates. The second division about thirty sail, of which two were of fifty guns, and two frigates. They stood Eastward. Whether the remaining Ships and troops are to remain at New York, I have not yet been able to ascertain.
I think it would be prudent, under the present appearances, for you to call for five thousand militia, including those already in service. Although I am myself persuaded, that the late embarkation is not intended against Boston, I would not, for the sake of opinion, put any thing to the Risque. That force, with the Count’s own strength and General Sullivan’s, will prevent the Enemy, should they be bound thither, from doing any thing decisive before the troops upon their march can get up. It is more than probable, that the British fleet of men of war will appear off Boston, to keep the Count in check, altho’ the destination of the transports may be to any other port. I do not think it will be needful to call for this addition to the militia in their regular course of service, or for any certain time. Those from the vicinity of Boston had better come out for a few days, as in that time the views of the enemy will be known. I am, &c.
[1 ]“As Sir Henry Clinton never complied with the request of granting passports for the transportation of Flour by Water, it becomes necessary that the Convention Troops should without loss of time be put in motion for Charlotteville in Virginia, agreeable to the order of Congress. You will be pleased to signify this to General Phillips immediately upon Receipt. I know of no way of conveying the troops to the place of their destination, but by calling upon the several States thro’ which they are to pass for a proper guard of militia, and Carriages sufficient to transport their baggage. You will therefore apply to the State of Massachusetts for the number necessary; and, when you have fixed the time of march and the Route, inform Govr. Trumbull, that he may be ready to receive them upon the Borders of Connecticut. I shall give him previous notice, that he may be prepared for such an event. Be pleased to inform me likewise, when the troops leave their present quarters, that I may make application to the Governors of New York and New Jersey, &c., for an Escort.”—Washington to Major-General Heath, 21 October, 1778.