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M. Malmedy to General Lee




Providence, December 20th, 1776.

SIR: On my arrival hither, I delivered your letter to the Governour, and, without soliciting any promotion, offered him my services. The Congress of the State have immediately granted me the rank of Colonel, which gave me great satisfaction. Two hours after, having more attentively perused your letter, and being determined by another circumstance, they conferred upon me the rank of Brigadier-General, which I acknowledged was yet unmerited.

Is there any reason to fear, sir, that the promotion, which is an act of mere favour, contains but the seeds of my disgrace, and that those gentlemen, if the Continental Congress should hesitate, have prepared for me but an humiliating situation, at the very time they intended to load me with their favours? Is there a probability of my not keeping that rank? If I do my duty, it would seem somewhat unjust. That promotion was entirely unsolicited by me.

Fondly believing the Congress will attend to those observations,


I entreat you will point them out to that body in a striking manner.

I am, with respect, sir, your most obedient and most humble servant,


To his Excellency General Lee, at the Army of the United States of America, in the Jerseys or elsewhere.