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Upon my arrival in this department, I found the main body of the army encamped at Van Schaiek's Islands, which are made by the sprouts of the Mohawk River joining with Hudson's River, nine miles north of Albany. A brigade, under General Poor, encamped at London's Ferry, on the south bank of the Mohawk River, five miles from hence, A brigade, under General Lincoln, had joined General Stark at Bennington; and a brigade, under General Arnold, marched the 15th instant to join the militia of Tryon country, to raise the siege of Fort Stanwix.
Upon my leaving Philadelphia, the prospect this way appeared most gloomy, but the severe checks the enemy have met with at Bennington and Tryon county, have given a more pleasing view of public affairs. Particular accounts of the signal victory gained by General Stark, and of the severe blow General Herkimer gave Sir John Johnson and the scalpers under his command, have been transmitted to your Excellency by General Schuyler. I anxiously expect the arrival of an express from General Arnold, with an account of the total defeat of the enemy in that quarter. By my calculation, he reached Fort Stanwix the day before yesterday.
Colonels Livingston's and Cortlandt's regiments arrived yesterday, and immediately joined General Poor's division. I shall also order General Arnold, upon his return, to march to that post. I cannot sufficiently thank your Excellency for sending Colonel Morgan's corps to this army; they will be of the greatest service to it; for, until the late success this way, I am told the army were quite panic-struck by the Indians, and their Tory and Canadian assassins in Indian dress. Horrible, indeed, have been the cruelties they have wantonly committed upon the miserable inhabit ants, insomuch that all is now fair with General Burgoyne, even if the bloody hatchet he has so barbarously used should find its way into his own head.
Governor Clinton will be here to-day. Upon his arrival, I shall consult with him and General Lincoln upon the best plan to distress, and I hope finally to defeat the enemy. I am sorry to be necessitated to acquaint your Excellency how neglectfully your orders have been executed at Springfield; not any of the musket ball, or lead, which you ordered so long ago to be sent to this department, is yet arrived, and I am exceedingly distressed for the want of it. Upon my arrival at Albany, I despatched an express to Colonel Hughes, with the inclosed return of ordnance stores wanted in this department, and directed what he could not furnish might be immediately ordered to be supplied from Springfield. Few of the militia demanded are yet arrived, but I hear of great numbers upon the march. Your Excellency's advice in regard to Morgan's corps, &c., &c., shall be care fully observed. My scouts and spies inform me, that the enemy's head-quarters and main body are at Saratoga, and that they have lately been repairing the bridges between that place and Stillwater.
As soon as times and circumstances will admit, I shall send your Excellency a general return of this army. I am, Sir,
Your Excellency's most obedient, humble servant
- 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