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Letter from General Schuyler to the President of Congress



[Read January 17, 1776.]

Albany, January 13, 1776 — 6 o' clock, P˙ M.

SIR: Within this half hour, Mr˙ Antill arrived with the unfortunate account contained in the enclosed

. My amiable and gallant friend, General Montgomery, is no more; he fell in an unsuccessful attack on Quebeck, on the 30th ultimo. My feelings on this unhappy occasion are too poignant to admit of expression. May Heaven avert any further evils.

In the present critical situation of affairs, it is evident to me that nothing but the immediate march of a body of troops into Canada can secure that Province, for the Canadians, as I have heretofore observed, are not to be depended upon; only one hundred and sixty were at Quebeck with Colonel Livingston, and those behaved ill, as Mr˙ Antill will inform you.

The very great distance of Congress from here will apologize for a request I shall immediately make to General Washington, to send three thousand men into Canada, to march, by the way of No˙ 4, to Onion River, from whence Lake Champiain is passable to Canada.

Congress, undoubtedly, conceives it to be advantageous to the cause of America to sit at Philadelphia; but they will be good enough to permit me to suggest the necessity


of a full-empowered Committee immediately to repair to this place.

Whilst I was preparing to carry into execution the resolutions of Congress respecting Tryon County, I received the two enclosed papers, marked Tryon
. We have had a corroboration of these accounts, and I propose to march from hence with what of Militia I can collect; perhaps I shall something exceed the Tories in number, who, we are informed, are about seven hundred. They have cannon; we have none, and we have a very small quantity of powder. I hope, however, to give a good account of them.

The garrison of Ticonderoga leave it on Tuesday. I have only twenty men as yet arrived, of all the recruiting parties I have sent out; these, I suppose, reached Fort-George on the 11th. On the 12th I ordered them back, to aid me to carry into execution the resolution of Congress transmitted me by Mr˙ Tilghman. I shall send an express to countermand my orders, and to send them on to Ticonderoga.

The hurry I am in will apologize for my not answering your letter sent me by Mr˙ Tilghman and the other gentlemen, which I must defer to an hour less encumbered than the present.

If any troops can be spared from Jersey, entreat Congress to send them up, that Ticonderoga may have a garrison.

The money arrived yesterday, and goes off to-morrow.

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

To the Honourable John Hancock, Esq.

P˙ S. Captain Hazen has stood our friend in the contest. He has been a great sufferer on the occasion; his house and furniture, I have understood, were destroyed by our troops and the Canadians, and that all his stock of cattle were killed and used by our people. If Congress means to recompense him, perhaps it would be best to have the damage ascertained by a Court of Inquiry. I mention this, lest he should be referred to me, without, at the same time, a mode of liquidating his loss should be prescribed.