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The Life of Gouverneur Morris

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General Montgomery and Mr. Morris, to meet the commander in chief at Newark, and recommend to him the place, which they should deem ‘most prudent’ for crossing the Hudson.

At this moment the Congress was beset with a new difficulty.  Governor Tryon still resided quietly in New York, and was considered, even by these representatives of the people, as the legal Governor, although they took care not to obey his authority, nor to show any other symptoms of allegiance, than outward respect, and a vigilant caution, that his person should not be molested.  It so happened, that at the very time they were informed of General Washington's arrival at Newark, by a letter from General Schuyler, they also heard that Governor Tryon was at Paulus Hook, and the alarming probability was, that he and General Washington would come together at that place.  To meet so ominous a crisis required more deliberation and forethought, than the Assembly had at command.  But no time was to be lost, and they resorted to the following expedient.  ‘Colonel Jasper was called in, and requested to send on one company of the militia to Paulus Hook, to meet the Generals; that he have another company at the side of the ferry for the same purpose; and that he have the residue of his battalions ready to receive either the Generals or Governor Tryon, whichever shall first arrive, and wait on both, as well as circumstances will allow.’  No other embarrassment seems to have occurred; the Governor and the General spared themselves the awkwardness of an interview; and on the next day Washington met the Congress, according to a previous arrangement with Mr. Morris and Mr. Low, when addresses of congratulation and civility were exchanged, in which there was nothing remarkable, except the pointed hint from the Congress to the commander in chief, that, ‘when the contest should be decided by an accomodation with the mother county, he should resign the important deposit committed to his hands.’  He was then escorted out of the city, by several companies of the militia of New York, and a troop of light-horse, which had accompanied him from Philadelphia.


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From The Life of Gouverneur Morris: With Selections from His Correspondence and Miscellaneous Papers; Detailing Events in the American Revolution, The French Revolution, and in the Political History of the United States, by Jared Sparks, Volume 1, Boston: Gray & Bowen, 1832, p 52. Some minor edits may have been made, but an attempt has been made to preserve the original spelling. Although some effort has been made to correct the limitations of OCR technology, if you find an error please report it to jvinci@colonialhall.com.

 
 


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Last modified August 20, 2006