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My public letters to Congress will inform your Excellency of our situation in this quarter. We fight, get beath and fight again. We have so much to do and so little to do it with, that I am much afraid these States must fall, never to rise aa'ain : and, what is more, I am persuaded they will lay a train to sap the foundation of all the rest.
I am greatly obliged to your Excellency for ordering the Marquis to the southward. I propose to halt him in Virginia, until the enemy's plan of operations is better known. Baron Steuben will join this army. He, having offended the Legislature of Virginia, cannot be as useful there as he has been. The Marquis is desired to keep your Excellency advised of all matters in that quarter, as it is too far first to come to this army and then be sent back again.
When I was appointed to the command of this army, I solicited Congress to give Dr. McHenry a majority, that he might serve nie in the character of Aid. This they refused. I was persuaded, when I made the application, of the necessity, and since have felt it most sensibly. Your Excellency can scarcely tell how happy you are in your family, and therefore can hardly judge of my situation. I cannot make a second application to Congress on the subject, nor should I have hopes of succeeding, if I did ; but I shall esteem it a peculiar mark of your Excellency's friendship and esteem, if you will interest yourself in the matter, and get him a majority. Your Excellency will judge of the propriety of my request; and if my wishes have prompted me to ask any thing that does not accord "with your opinion or your feelings, I must beg you to decline the measure, and excuse me.
It is a long time since I received a line from Mrs. Greene. I am afraid they have miscarried, before they got to head-quarters. I am sorry that you had not leisure to call on her on your return from Newport. She would have thought herself greatly honored, and been peculiarly happy on the occasion.
With the greatest respect and esteem, I am, &c.,
- Nathanael Greene
- 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 III., Jared Sparks, 1853