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General Schuyler to General Washington



Ticonderoga, July 18, 1775.

DEAR SIR: I do myself the honour to inform your Excellency of my arrival at this place early this morning, and as a person is just going to Hartford, I sit down to give you the little information I have procured.

A Canadian, who twelve days ago left St˙ John' s, advises me that General Carleton has about four hundred men at that place; that he has thrown up a strong intrenchment, covered with chevaux-de-frise, picketed the ditch, and secured it with an abattis; that he has an advanced post of fifty men intrenched a league on this side; that there are many Indians in Canada, but believes that neither they nor the Canadians will join him; the latter he is sure will not, unless compelled by force.

You will expect that I should say something about this place and the troops here. Not one earthly thing for offence or defence has been done; the commanding officer had no orders, he only came to re-enforce the garrison, and he expected the General! But this, my dear General, as well


as what follows in this paragraph, I pray may be entre nous, for reasons I need not suggeSt˙ About ten o' clock last night I arrived at the landing place, the north end of Lake George, a post occupied by a captain and one hundred men. A sentinel, on being informed I was in the boat, quitted his post to go and awake the guard, consisting of three men, in which he had no success. I walked up and came to another, a sergeant' s guard. Here the sentinel challenged, but suffered me to come up to him, the whole guard, like the first, in the soundest sleep. With a penknife only I could have cut off both guards, and then have set fire to the block-house, destroyed the stores, and starved the people here. At this post I have pointedly recommended vigilance and care, as all the stores from Fort George must necessarily be landed there. But I hope to get the better of this inattention. The officers and men are all good looking people, and decent in their deportment, and I really believe will make good soldiers as soon as I can get the better of this nonchalance of theirs. Bravery, I believe, they are far from wanting. As soon as I am a little settled, I shall do myself the honour to send you a return of my strength both on land and water.

I enclose your Excellency a copy of a letter from Colonel Johnson, with a copy of an examination of a person lately from Canada, contradictory of the accounts I gave you in my last from Saratoga. You will perceive that he is gone to Canada. I hope Carleton, if he should be able to procure a body of Indians, will not be in a hurry to pay us a visit. I wish to be a little more, decently prepared to receive him; in doing which, be assured I shall lose no time.

I have no way of sending you any letters, with a probable hope of their coming to hand, unless by express, or by the circuitous route of Hartford; by which only, I can expect to be favoured with a line from you.

Generals Lee and Gates share with you in my warmest wishes. I shall devote the first hour I can call my own, to do myself the honour to write them.

I am, most sincerely, your Excellency' s obedient and humble servant,


P˙ S. Permit me, Sir, through you, to inquire the health of Colonel Reed, Major Mifflin, and Mr˙ Griffin.