Washington. Letter signed: Head
Quarters Peekskill, to Brigadier General Henry Knox, 1781 July 02.
3 p. + addr. + doc.
Quarters Peekskill 2d. July 1781.
- different hand: Washington]
have recd. Your favor of the 29th. ulto.
The arrangement which you have made for the periods of transportation of
the heavy Stores from Philada. agrees perfectly with my Ideas of the matter, as
I think we must be certainly able to determine ultimately upon our plan of
operations, by the time they are to be in motion –
enterprize, which I have long had in contemplation, will be executed in the
course of this night, if Genl. Lincoln, who commands the operating party, finds
the attack advisable upon reconnoitring the situation of the enemy, and he can
do it by surprise. The enterprise
is against the posts upon the North End of York Island  – The remainder of
the Army marched this morning towards Kingsbridge. [inserted: part of] The French Troops were last night at Ridgebury
and will be at Bedford this evening. They
will, in the course of tomorrow, be at hand to support us should there be
occasion. At the same time that the
posts upon York Island are attempted, I have planned a surprise upon Delanceys
Corps at Morrisania, which is to be executed by the Duke de Lazun in conjunction
with Sheldons Regt and Waterbury’s State Troops.
we succeed in the attempt upon the posts, every effort will be made to hold
them, and your assistance will be materially necessary.
I shall take the speediest method of communicating the event to Genl
Mc.dougal at West point, who will fire the Alarm  Guns and Beacons as signals
for the Governor, who will bring out the Militia to our support.
You will therefore take it for granted that we have succeeded, if you see
or hear the signals. You will, in
such case immediately down, leaving Colo. Stevens every thing in readiness to
am with very great
Your most obt
From his Excellency
[?] July 1781 –
No: 36 –
Brigr. Genl. Knox
Notes: Published in Fitzpatrick, John C. The Writings of George
Washington. v 22: 372.