Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS
Rediscovering George Washington
Washington: Father of His Country The Washington Collection
Washington in the Classroom About the Program
Timeline: George Washington's Life Milestones
Multimedia Room Search the Site
Gilder Lehrman Collection Documents
Gilder Lehrman Collection Images
Other Documents
Gilder Lehrman Collection Documents
  Letter to Daniel Brodhead, April 21, 1779
TRANSCRIPT GLC 2867.02
George Washington. Letter signed: Head Quarters Middle Brook, to Colonel Daniel Brodhead, 1779 April 21. 2 p.

Head Quarters Middle
Brook April 21st 1779

Dear Sir,

I have duly received your two favours of the 16th and 21st of last month Since my last letter to you and upon a further consideration of the subject I have relinquished the idea of attempting a cooperation between the troops at Fort Pitt and the bodies moving from other quarters against the six nations. The difficulty of providing supplies in time the want of satisfactory information of the routes and nature of the country up the Alleghany and between that and the Indian Settlemts consequently the uncertainty of being able to cooperate to advantage, and the hazard which the smaller party might run for want of a cooperation are principal reasons for declining it: The danger to which the frontier would be exposed, by drawing off the troops from their present position, from the incursions of the more Western tribes is an additional, though a less powerful motive. The post at Tuscarowas is therefore to be preserved; if after a full consideration of circumstances, it is judged a post of importance and to be maintained without incurring too great risk; and the troops in general under your command are to be disposed in the manner best [2] calculated to cover and protect the country on a defensive plan.

As it is my wish however, as soon as it may be in our power to chastize the Western savages, by an expedition into their country you will employ the intermediate time in making preparation and forming magazines of provisions for the purpose. If the expedition against the six nations is successfully ended, a part of the troops, employed on this, will probably be sent in conjunction with those under you, to carry on another that way. You will endeavour to obtain in the mean time and transmit to me every kind of intelligence which will be necessary to assist our operations as precise full and authentic as possible: among other points, you will try to ascertain the most favourable season for an enterprize against Detroit. The frozen season, in the opinion of most is the only one in which any capital stroke can be given, as the enemy can thenderive no benefit from their Shipping, which must either be destroyed or fall into our hands.

With great regard I am
D Sir Your most Obed Servt
Go: Washington

[docket] His Excelly. Letter 21st. April 1779

Notes: Published in Fitzpatrick, John C. The Writings of George Washington. v. 14: 421- 22.