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The 24th instant, I left Crown Point; the 25th, at night, anchored at "Willsborough. The same night came on a violent storm at northeast; the next day, at two, P. M., was obliged to weigh anchor and return to this place, where the whole fleet arrived the same evening, except the Spitfire, Captain Ulmer, who could not clear the shore, and was obliged to come to an anchor again, and rode out the storm, though exposed to the rake of Cumberland Bay, fifty miles long. The hard gale made an amazing sea; and, when I expected to hear the gondola was foundered, or drove on shore, she joined us, having received no damage, though a light bateau, veered astern of her, was sunk with the sea breaking over her. The severe weather prevented my despatching Lieutenant Whitcomb before yesterday morning. The first fair wind, I will follow him. I should have gone this evening, but the breeze is so light, night would have come on before we could have reached a safe place of anchorage.
I have had no advice from St. John's or Isle-aux-Noix. The earliest intelligence I receive shall be communicated to you immediately. I am very anxious to hear from New York, and make no doubt when you receive any material advices, I shall soon be acquainted with them.
Inclosed is a return of the strength of the fleet, by which you will observe that seventy-four men are wanting to complete the numbers proposed for the vessels, which are barely sufficient when complete. I should be extremely glad they were sent to us soon. If you think proper to send them, the bearer, Lieutenant Calderwood, will take charge of them.
Mr. Gilliland has the only good draught I know of Lake Champlain, which, he says, was delivered to Captain Bush for you. It will be of great service to me, as I have no draught of the Lake.
If a good officer can be procured to act as Captain of the Royal Savage, I think lie might be of service in case any accident should happen to me. The present Master is not fit for the command in chief, though a good man in his present station.
I suppose by this time General Schuyler has paid you a visit. Please to make my respectful compliments to him, if arrived, and let him know I will write him very particularly as soon as I arrive at the other end of the Lake.
I am, with real affection and esteem, dear General, your obedient, humble servant,
- Benedict Arnold
- Correspondence of the American Revolution; Being Letters of Eminent Men to George Washington, from the Time of His Taking Command of the Army to the End of His Presidency, Volume I., Jared Sparks, 1853