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Colonel Hartley to General Gates



Crown-Point, October 10, 1776.

HONOURED SIR: Since the junction of the galleys with the rest of your formidable armada on Lake Champlain, nothing has occurred in my department worthy of troubling you about, and from the present appearance of things, Mars will have little to do above Split-Rock this fall.

I take notice of the winds. My American standard, erected upon my citadel, informs me at once which way they blow, and I keep my people busy at such work as I apprehend will conduce to the publick service. If we have done little, our force could do no more.

If I am not mistaken, I understood from you and General St˙ Clair, that it was intended two or three companies should be stationed here this winter. You were pleased to approve of some small essays of buildings I was making. I have, with a few carpenters and other tradesmen, erected a sufficient number of convenient barracks (when finished) for the men proposed to be stationed here. This you will find more proper than attempting to repair the barracks in the old fort, which could not be effected without many hands and much labour, and the party stationed in the old for it would not have been secure, with the works in their present ruins.

I have had a few nails from you; perhaps we shall need no more. We have consumed some boards from a saw-mill which I got repaired and carried on with my own men. Some more will be necessary. Your army and fleet have got four thousand feet from the mill. After the present week you may have at least two thousand feet a week from there, to supply you at Head-Quarters. The expense will be very trifling. I hope my conduct in this business will meet your approbation. I know you have daily matters of consequence to transact, and are too frequently troubled with affairs of little moment. My applications generally fall among the latter. I am going to reform. They shall really be very seldom.

Wood is necessary: wood must be cut; and had the last axes sent me been worth a farthing, I should not have desired my Ensign yesterday to call for more. Colonel Lewis some time since sent eighteen. I got them helved. They flinch at the first attack. Nothing can be done with them. If I could have twelve more, without distressing you at Head-Quarters, I would be glad of it. If that would put you to any inconvenience, there are some smiths of this regiment, who came from Skenesborough, and are now at Ticonderoga, if they were sent here with a little steel and iron, all will be well.

I am pleased to hear part of New-York is burnt. I hope we shall have intelligence that the rest of that nest of Tories, and sink of American villany, has shared the same fate. That cursed town from first to last has been ruinous to the common cause.

It was generally deemed that Ticonderoga was much more healthy than Crown Point. There are no less than one hundred and forty sick present of this regiment, besides those sent to Fort George. They are almost all ill of the fever and ague. I hope they will soon be well. The northwester I presume will brace them up.

The bakers want some casks to pack their biscuit in for the fleet. Forty or fifty barrels ought to be sent them as soon as possible.

I am, honoured sir, with the greatest respect and regard, your most obedient, humble servant,


To General Gates.

P˙ S. I hope to have the pleasure of seeing you come


down in the next galley. A few days' notice would be very agreeable.

P˙ S. Extra. I must acquiesce in Pope' s doctrine "whatever is, is right." The tin-man was sick first; he got well enough to make some canisters; a few were sent me by the Captain of the first galley, but really he carried them off. I suppose they will give some of the enemy their quietus, if our fleet should be attacked. The tin-man is got sick again. In short, I begin to believe that bag-shot will do almost as well as canister-shot. Should any party of the enemy pay me a visit, I shall give them a few solid ball in the bargain. Yours, &c˙,