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Willlamsburg, November 28, 1779.
Your Excellency's letter on the discriminations which have been heretofore made, between the troops raised within this state, and considered as part of our quota, and those not so considered, was delivered me four days ago. I immediately laid it before the Assembly, who thereupon came to the resolution I now do myself the honor of enclosing you. The resolution of Congress, of March 15th, 1779, which you were so kind as to enclose, was never known in this state till a few weeks ago, when we received printed copies of the Journals of Congress. It would be a great satisfaction to us, to receive an exact return of all the men we have in Continental service, who come within the description of the resolution, together with our state troops in Continental service. Colonel Cabell was so kind as to send me a return of the Continental regiments, commanded by Lord Sterling, of the first and second Virginia State regiments, and of Colonel Gist's regiment. Besides these are the following, viz. Colonel Harrison's regiment of artillery, Colonel Bayler's horse, Colonel Eland's horse, General Scott's new levies, part of which are gone to Carolina, and part are here, Colonel Gibson's regiment stationed on the Ohio, Heath and Ohara's independent companies at the same stations. Colonel Taylor's regiment of guards to the Convention troops: of these, we have a return. There may, possibly, be others not occurring to me. A return of all these would enable us to see what proportion of the Continental army is contributed by us. We have, at present, very pressing calls to send additional numbers of men to the southward. No inclination is wanting in either the Legislature or Executive, to aid them or strengthen you: but we find it very difficult to procure men. I herewith transmit to your Excellency some recruiting commissions, to be put into such hands as you may think proper, for re-enlisting such of our soldiery as are not already engaged for the war. The Act of Assembly authorizing these instructions, requires that the men enlisted should be reviewed and received by an officer to be appointed for that purpose; a caution, less necessary in the case of men now actually in Service, therefore, doubtless able-bodied, than in the raising new recruits. The direction, however, goes to all cases, and, therefore, we must trouble your Excellency with the appointment of one or more officers of review. Mr. Moss, our agent, receives orders, which accompany this, to pay the bounty money and recruiting money, and to deliver the clothing. We have, however, certain reason to fear he has not any great sum of money on hand; and it is absolutely out of our power, at this time, to supply him, or to say, with certainty, when we shall be able to do it. He is instructed to note his acceptances under the draughts, and to assure payment as soon as we shall have it in our power to furnish him, as the only substitute for money. Your Excellency's directions to the officer of review, will probably procure us the satisfaction of being informed, from time to time, how many men shall be re-enlisted.
By Colonel Mathews I informed your Excellency fully of the situation of Governor Hamilton and his companions. Lamothe and Dejean have given their paroles, and are at Hanover Court-House: Hamilton, Hay, and others, are still obstinate; therefore, still in close confinement, though their irons have never been on, since your second letter on the subject. I wrote full information of this matter to General Phillips also, from whom I had received letters on the subject. I cannot, in reason, believe that the enemy, on receiving this information either from yourself or General Phillips, will venture to impose any new cruelties on our officers in captivity with them. Yet their conduct, hitherto, has been most successfully prognosticated by reversing the conclusions of right reason. It is, therefore, my duty, as well as it was my promise to the Virginia captives, to take measures for discovering any change which may be made in their situation. For this purpose, I must apply for your Excellency's interposition. I doubt not but you have an established mode of knowing, at all times, through your commissary of prisoners, the precise state of those in the power of the enemy. I must, therefore, pray you to put into motion any such means you have, for obtaining knowledge of the situation of Virginia officers in captivity. If you should think proper, as I could wish, to take upon yourself to retaliate any new sufferings which may be imposed on them, it will be more likely to have-due weight, and to restore the unhappy on both sides, to that benevolent treatment for which all should wish.
I have the honor to be, &c. &c.