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Proceedings of a General Court-Martial of the line on Lieutenant-Colonel Zedtwitz, August 25



Proceedings of a General Comt Martial of the Line, held at Head Quarters, in the city of NEW YORK, by order of His Excellency GEORGE WASHINGTON, Esq˙, General and Commander-in-Chief of the Forces of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, for the trial of HERMAN ZEDTWITZ, Lieutenant-Colonel in the Army of said Stales, AUGUST 25, 1776.

Brigadier-General JAMES WADSWORTH, President.
Colonel John Bailey,
Lieutenant-Colonel Johonnot,
Colonel Smallwood,
Lieutenant-Colonel Ware,
Colonel Haslett,
Lieutenant-Colonel Bedford,
Colonel Carey,
Lieutenant-Colonel Beldin,
Colonel Cook,
Major Hayden,
Lieut˙ Col˙ Sheppard,
Major Sherman,
Wm˙ Tudor, Judge-Advocate.

The Court being duly sworn, proceeded to the trial of Lieutenant-Colonel Zedtwitz, brought prisoner before the Court, and accused of "holding a treacherous correspondence with, and giving intelligence to, the enemies of the United States."

The prisoner being called upon to plead to said charge, moves the Court that he may be allowed time till tomorrow to plead and prepare for his defence. The Court grant the request of the prisoner, and the Court adjourned to Monday morning, 26th of August, at ten o' clock.

August 26 th˙ — The Court met according to adjournment, and proceeded to the trial of Lieutenant-Colonel Zedtwitz, adjourned from yesterday.

The prisoner being arraigned on the aforementioned complaint, pleads not guilty.

The Judge-Advocate laid before the Court the letter hereto annexed; which being shown to the prisoner, he concedes to be his handwriting; which letter is read to the Court, as follows: — (See the paper marked A.)

Augustus Stein was sworn, and deposes as follows: — (See the Deposition marked B.)

The evidence being gone through in support of the complaint, the prisoner is called upon to make his defence, and produces the paper marked C, which is read to the Court.

The prisoner produced Brigadier Lord Stirling as a witness, who, being sworn, deposes:

Lord STIRLING. In the spring of the year, when the talk was of the Hessians coming out, Lieutenant-Colonel Zedtwitz told me that if he could be permitted to write or communicate with them by the authority of the General or the Congress, he could bring over a number of them. At my request he wrote a letter in Hess, which, he said, was on the subject, but I had no translation of it, and no use was ever made of it. About a fortnight ago he said to me, well, they are now come, my Lord, and I will get my two thousand pounds which the English Government cheated him out of; and went on to tell me how, but I paid but little attention to the story. He never shew me any letter, nor pointed out any method he intended to take to obtain the two thousand pounds, nor have I ever exchanged a word with him since.


The Court, being cleared, are of opinion that the prisoner is guilty of concerting a plan, and attempting to treacherously correspond with, and give intelligence, to the enemy; and the Court sentence and adjudge that the prisoner be cashiered and rendered incapable, and he is hereby cashiered and rendered incapable of ever holding a commission in the service of the United American States.

JAMES WADSWORTH, Brig˙ Gen˙, President.