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Robert H. Harrison to Governour Trumbull



White-Plains, November 7th, 1776.

SIR: In obedience to his Excellency' s command, I am to inform you that yesterday the General Officers met, to take a summary view of our affairs. They appeared to be critical and truly alarming, on account of the approaching dissolution of our Army, and the departure of a large part of it, under the denomination of New Levies, on the eve of taking place.

Impressed with the importance of these matters, at a time when the enemy have a very numerous and formidable force watching an opportunity to execute their plans and to spread ruin and devastation among us, the council unanimously advised that application should be made to several of the States for supplies of Militia to fill the places of those who are now here, and in part the vacancies which will be occasioned by the return of the levies. The hope and prospect of raising a new army within a convenient time is so little, and the consequences so evidently alarming, if a sufficient is not kept up to counteract the designs of the enemy, that the council were of opinion that they should be engaged, if possible, to continue in service till the 1st of March, unless their return could be sooner dispensed with; flattering themselves that by that time, if not long before, such an army will be levied as to render any future claims of their service altogether unnecessary, unless in case of the most pressing necessity.

His Excellency, well knowing the exertions of your State and the difficulties you have experienced on account of the frequent large drafts from it from time to time, declines mentioning any particular or precise quota as necessary to be furnished by you, and means only to submit the propriety of the requisition, and the performance of it, to your consideration, fully confiding that whatever aid is in your power will be most readily granted. His Excellency thinks it material that some measures should be adopted for the purpose especially, as the Militia which lately came under General Saltonstall are extremely impatient to return. Two or three of their Colonels applied to him yesterday for that purpose, urging that they had not engaged for any particular time. He could not grant their request in the present situation of our affairs, but has little doubt but many of the men, as they have already, will go off.

I have the honour to be, &c˙,


To Governour Trumbull, Connecticut.