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Colonel Tilghman to General Heath



Head-Quarters, October 9, 1776.

SIR: I have this moment yours of this evening. The party of one hundred men were ordered up to assist a detachment of Artillery in covering the two new ships, should the enemy attempt to cut them out or destroy them. Soon after I got home from Fort Washington, I received a report that the enemy had passed the new ships and were landing at Dobbs' s Ferry. I then directed Colonel Reed to desire you, if that should be the case, to send field-pieces and howitzers forward if it should be judged necessary, and as General Clinton best knew the ground, to consult him upon the necessity of sending on the artillery, and if it was sent, that a strong covering party should go with it. Till I received yours, I heard no more of the matter. I am sorry you have been misinformed as to the movement of the other ships below; they have never stirred from their moorings. You will therefore be pleased to order Captain Benson to be as expeditious as possible in getting the new ships afloat and bringing them down to where they may be conveniently ballasted. I will take proper care of the prisoners you are sending down.

While I was writing the above by his Excellency' s direction, he went to bed. I thought it a pity to disturb him to sign it. I therefore have the honour to subscribe myself your most obedient servant,


To General Heath.