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Letter from General Roberdeau to General Washington



Newark, August 19, 1776, half-past eleven o' clock, A˙ M.

SIR: The post-rider just passed through here, with a very incredible story, which he told with great confidence, viz: that you had received a flag from Lord Howe, "proposing to retire with the fleet and army, and that he was willing to settle the present dispute on any terms you should ask;" for which he quoted the authority of an officer in your Army, who told him he might spread the news without the least reserve, for that the officer offered to swear to the truth, for that he had it from you. As this intelligence might have a tendency to lull the inhabitants, I thought it my duty to make it the subject of an express, without counselling General Mercer, who is gone forward towards Amboy.

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

To His Excellency General Washington, Commander-in-Chief, Head Quarters, New York.

P˙ S. The intelligencer further informed that the reason of this hasty move from Lord Howe was news from England of a rumpus with France.