Want to save this letter now that you've found it?
It's easy - just create your own collection of letters after signing up for a free account.
This morning at daybreak, I received your Excellency's favor of the 16th instant; am extremely mortified to find that every thing here has turned out contrary to my expectations, and your Excellency's wishes. This was not owing to my being deceived with respect to the enemy on the ground at the time I wrote, but to the sudden arrival of such a number under General Burgoyne, the night before the battle of Three Rivers, of which I have given a full and perfect account in former letters. I am conscious of having done every thing in my power to gain the ground our troops had lost, and to secure the retreat of the army, when I found our point could not be carried. I imagine that General Schuyler forgot to inclose the return, as I think -it went from me at the time; "but I am not clear whether it did not go in a separate letter. I dare say it has reached you before this. I now inclose an other which I wish safe to hand, and hope to have a more complete and , perfect one in a few days, which I shall forward to your. Excellency.
I am well convinced of the necessity of a good understanding being kept up among the officers of the army. This has been remarkably the case since my arrival. I have not seen an instance to the contrary, except some few reflections which seemed to take place between the northern and southern troops, which I hope I have sufficiently cured by calling upon the officers of every corps, and requesting them to suppress a thing, which, if continued, must weaken, if not destroy, the army. They all agreed to join heartily in putting an end to this dangerous behaviour among the troops, which I am convinced they did, as I have heard nothing of it since, and find that harmony takes place among the troops in a surprising manner. In all our difficulties there seemed a unanimity of sentiment among all the officers. Indeed, I have not known the least dispute among them. The unfortunate General Thompson, the Baron de Woedtke, and myself were at Sorel. Never did greater harmony and friendship exist. General Arnold was at Montreal, and kept up the most friendly intercourse and correspondence with us, and we with him. It is true, I thought the keeping Colonel De-haas from Sorel was wrong, but only supposed it an error in judgment, as I did that of his keeping the forces in too great numbers at the posts up the country. This I communicated to him in the most friendly manner, which he accounted for in a way that convinced- me that he acted not without some foundation ; though I think it would have been better had it not been done. Assure yourself, my dear General, that I will exert myself in cultivating harmony and friendship among both officers and soldiers in the army, and that I am, with the most profound respect, your Excellency's
Most devoted, humble servant,
P. S. The Brigade-Major and Adjutant of the day have this moment informed me, that, while they were parading the main guard, four men dropped down under arms, and appear like dead men. I am almost distracted with the thought of losing so many men as daily go off by sickness. I shall, to-day, remove from this infectious place to Isle-la-Motte, which I should have done before now, had not too many of our bateaux gone forward with the sick to Crown Point.
- John Sullivan
- 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