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Letter from General Schuyler to the President of Congress



IRead February 2, and referred to Mr˙ Wythe, Mr˙ E˙ Rutledge, and Mr˙ McKean.]

Albany, January 25, 1776.

SIR: I have this moment received a letter from General Wooster, copy of which, with copies of sundries enclosed, I now do myself the honour to transmit to you. I shall


order him to send every person from Canada that may be dangerous to our cause if left in that country.

From General Wooster' s letter one would be led to imagine that I had sent back vast numbers of dangerous persons; he has before wrote to me on the occasion with an unbecoming jubacity. I, therefore, trouble you with the detail. Sears, whom he mentions, was sent to me from Connecticut with a recommendation from the Committee of ...... to permit him to return to Canada, which I did, ordering him to wait on the commanding officer; Captain Goodwin and Lieutenant Schalk I permitted to remain at Ticonderoga at the request of General Montgomery, until they could be informed if their wives and children, whom they had left at Quebeck, were gone to England, or had come to Chambly. If to the latter, then he wished they might be permitted to return and convey them into these Colonies. They, their wives and children, are now at Chambly. Mr˙ McCullough, a Commissary, was another, a widower, who had left four small children in Canada, and whom I likewise permitted to return on the same account; these, together with the Canadian peasants taken at St˙ John' s are all that I recollect to have sent back, and not even the last without the approbation of General Montgomery first had. The peasantry were too insignificant to have any influence, and there seemed at that time little danger from the others, and yet I took the precaution of their word of honour, not to say any thing on the subject of the controversy. If they have abused my confidence they are scoundrels, and I will treat them accordingly, without repenting that I gave them the indulgence, for that was an act of humanity. If they are not culpable they are injured, and I too. I shall sift the matter to the bottom, and my resentment, without any kind of exception, shall be experienced by those that deserve it.

I have just received at letter from Colonel Warner, of which the following is a copy:

"Bennington, January 22, 1776.

"SIR: My prospect in raising men seems very encouraging, one hundred and upwards I have sent forward; a number more is ready to march soon. I have twelve companies raising, though the men shall be sent forward as fast as possible. More money is necessary, as I have paid the chief out that I received. Two companies more I expect to raise, as they have sent me they wish to engage. Major Safford will be the receiver of what money will be disbursed for said purpose. From your humble servant,


In answer to this I sent the following, which I showed to Mr˙ Livingston. our brother delegate, and of which he approved.

"Albany, January 25, 1776.

"SIR: Major Safford has delivered me your letter of the 22d instant. I was in hopes that by that time a much larger number of men had marched than what you mention; the bounty I promised was in consideration of their immediately marching; when, therefore, as many men are actually marched, (which I expect will be without delay,) as I gave you the bounty for, I shall furnish you with a further sum to send as many more as will amount to a regiment on the present Continental establishment, which is seven hundred and twenty men, officers included; but I do expect that the whole will march by the 1st day of February; such as are not marched by that time will not be entitled to any part of the bounty."

January 26.—I was last night informed that the better part of the troops to be raised in the County of Berkshire were already marched. I have sent Governour Trumbull a return of the arms that were delivered into store by the men raised in the Colony of Connecticut—he cannot furnish the regiment raising there, and I propose to return those arms, or a like number, that they may not be a Colonial charge against the Continent.

I am, sir, most sincerely, your obedient, humble servant,


To the Honourable John Hancock, Esq˙, &c˙, &c˙, &c.