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Letter from General Schuyler to Jeremiah Powell



Albany, July 13, 1776.

SIR: Your letters of the 29th ultimo, and 1st instant, I had the honour to receive at Ticonderoga a few days ago. I deferred answering them until I should be able to give you some account of the measures taken to prevent that dreadful malady, which has so greatly reduced our Army, from infecting the Militia intended to reinforce it.


The main body of the Army is removing to Ticonderoga, when they will be immediately employed in constructing such fortifications on the west side of Lake Champlain as may be necessary to prevent the enemy from drawing over their' boats into Lake George, should they obtain a naval superiority; which, however, I have not the least apprehension that they will be able to effect this campaign. On the east side of Lake Champlain, and opposite to Ticonderoga, the grounds are remarkably strong; and it is concluded to be the place for a fortified camp, to be occupied by the Militia to prevent the enemy penetrating the Colonies in that quarter; and by means of our batteaus, both bodies may reciprocally support each other, as the distance from shore to shore is only half a mile. This disposition will effectually prevent the small-pox from being conveyed to the Militia by the now infected Army; and we hope that in a few weeks both bodies may join without danger, should there be occasion, as all the sick and infected are removing to Fort George, to which place every one hereafter seized with the small-pox will be sent, and there kept until they are perfectly cleansed.

Our Army is much recovered since their return to Crown Point, and I hope in a little time to find it healthy and fit to give the enemy a warm reception, should they be able to cross the Lake and attempt an attack.

I am, sir, your most obedient humble servant,

To the Hon˙ Jeremiah Powell, Esq˙, President of the Colony of Massachusetts Bay, &c.

P˙ S˙ When I was at Crown Point, I proposed to a council of officers an expedient to procure the return of the deserters from the northern Army; and it was unanimously agreed that I should write to the different Governments from whence troops had been sent, entreating the Governours and Commanders-in-Chief to issue their Proclamations promising pardon to all such as should return by a limited time, to be fixed by such Governours, &c˙; and to require all officers, civil and military, in their respective Governments, to apprehend all such deserters as should not comply with the terms offered. May I be permitted to entreat your Honour to issue such Proclamation in your Colony.