Primary tabs

Letter from General Washington


General Washington' s Letter is as follows:

"Cambridge, January 16, 1776.

"SIR: The alarming and almost defenceless state of our lines, occasioned by the slow progress in raising recruits for the new Army, and the departure of a great number of the Militia, which had been called in for their support till the 15th instant, rendered it necessary for me to summon the General Officers in Council, to determine on proper means to be adopted for their preservation. For this purpose, they met at Head-Quarters yesterday and to-day, and finding that it was with the utmost difficulty and persuasion that such of the latter as are now here have been prevailed upon to continue till the last of the month, (after which there is not the remotest probability of their staying a moment,) they have judged it expedient, and absolutely necessary, that thirteen regiments should be forthwith, raised, equal to those of the new establishment, to be officered according to the usual mode of their respective Governments, which are to


repair to this camp by the last instant, if possible, to be in readiness to act in such manner, till the 1st of April, as circumstances may require. Of this number, they apprehend the Massachusetts should furnish seven, Connecticut four, and your Government two, being agreeable to the proportion settled by Congress.

"In order that each regiment may consist of a proper number of officers and men, I have enclosed you a list for their regulation, and of the Continental pay. I must earnestly solicit your attention and regard to arms, ammunition, blankets, kettles, and clothing, that they may come as well provided with these necessaries as possible, particularly the first, as, from the amazing deficiency here, I shall not have it in my power to supply them.


"Hon˙ Matthew Thornton, Esq."