||TRANSCRIPT GLC 2437.53.003
George Washington. Letter: Head Quarters Valley Forge, to Brigadier
General Henry Knox, 1788 February 21. 2 p.
Head Quarters Valley Forge Feby. 21st. 1778.
[inserted- different hand: Washington]
I duly received your favour of the 18th. of January, which
hurry of business has prevented my answering sooner.
As transportation, at this season, would be and expensive,
I approve of the plan you adopted the cannon at Albany; but
that no risk may be run, and in order to have them as early
as possible, so near the scene of action, as that we may be
able to make use of them, if necessary, it is my wish, the
moment the River is Sufficiently open to permit it, they may
be brought forward with all speed. – It would be altogether
improper to send them to Springfield.
Neither does it appear to me eligible to send the small arms
at Albany, so far out of the way. – If those requiring
it, can possibly be repaired there, it ought to be done; or
if they cannot, and it is practicable in this Quarter, they
ought to be sent to the Armouries, this way. Nothing but necessity
and its being impossible to have the business done otherwise,
will justify their being sent to Springfield – to be
brought from thence to this army.
I am exceedingly apprehensive, from the immense waste, which
has constantly attended them, that we shall be very much distressed
for arms, at the opening of the next Campaign. I am [inserted:
also] much afraid that without the greatest care we shall
come far short of having a sufficiency of Cartridge boxes
– These are matters to which I most urgently request
your particular attention – that every possible exertion
may be used to avoid a deficiency in such essential articles.
I dare say you will in your  absence be very usefully
employed, but your presence here, to Superintend your department
at large, is so extremely requisite, that I flatter myself
you will make a point of rejoining the army as expeditiously
as circumstances will admit. –
I am with real regard & esteem
Your most hum: Servt.
P.S. I this moment received your letter of the 21st. of Jany.
I shall immediately write to the Board of War on the subject
of the artillery sent to Farmington, and transmit you directions
concerning them, as soon as I receive an answer; but would
not have you to wait, till those arrive, at Boston, as I cannot
help [struck: again] expressing my fear that the business
of your department [?] will be exceedingly behind hand, as
Flower is not yet able to look into it, with that degree of
attention it requires.
Notes: Published in Fitzpatrick, John C. The Writings of George
Washington. v. 10: 489-90.
*Signature removed; editorial insertions of missing text based
on Fitzpatrick transcription.