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The Life of Gouverneur Morris

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happily situated on the frontier.  Ward's regiment I have ordered to remain at their respective homes, until they hear further.  These Connecticutians are, if possible, more eager to go out of their country, than they are to return home, when they have been out for any considerable time.

‘Enclosed I send you my letter to the General Congress, and that of the Provincial Congress of New York to me, with my answer.  I hope it will have, your approbation.  The whigs, I mean the stout ones, are, it is said, very desirous that a body of troops should march and be stationed in their city; the timid ones are averse, merely from the spirit of procrastination, which is the characteristic of timidity.  The letter of the Provincial Congress, you will observe, breathes the very essence of this spirit,--it is wofully hysterical.  I conclude I shall receive the orders of the General Congress, before, or immediately on, my arrival; otherwise I should not venture to march into the province, as, by their late resolve, every detachment of the continental troops is to be under the direction of the Provincial Congress, in which they are, a resolve, I must say, with submission to their wisdom, fraught with difficulties and evil.  It is impossible, (raving two sovereigns, that any business should be carried on.’

As soon as General Lee's letter to the Continental Congress enclosing a copy of the letter of the Committee of Safety to him, reached Philadelphia, the New York delegates proposed that a committee should be appointed to proceed to New York, and confer with General Lee, as to the immediate objects of his enterprise, and the mode of prosecuting it in a manner acceptable to the inhabitants.  This committee consisted of Messrs Harrison, Lynch, and Allen, and they arrived in New York on the 30th of January, two or three days before General Lee, who was detained on the road by indisposition.  Meantime he sent forward seven hundred troops, under the command of Colonel Waterberry.  A part of them arrived in town the clay after the committee of the Continental Congress.

The New York Committee of Safety here found themselves

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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 79. 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


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