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At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 85,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World through the end of the twentieth century.

Washington, George (1732-1799) to Jonathan Trumbull

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC01138 Author/Creator: Washington, George (1732-1799) Place Written: Cambridge, Massachusetts Type: Letter signed Date: 21 January 1776 Pagination: 2 p. ; 23.3 x 18.3 cm. Order a Copy

Written by Washington as commander of the American army around Boston to Trumbull as Governor of Connecticut. Trumbull was the only colonial governor to join the patriot cause. References his hasty dispatch of 19 January 1776. Says he forgot to inform Trumbull that he will give troops heading north to Canada a month's pay in advance, on behalf of Congress. Trumbull had previously offered to send a regiment of Connecticut troops to Canada and Washington suggests they also be advanced a month's pay, to help them make the arduous journey, provide for families being left behind, and to avoid jealousies among the troops. Believes Congress will reimburse him for the funds, but says he has no authority to guarantee that. Hopes he will equip the regiment properly and to keep vouchers so reimbursements can be made. Adds that the need to act quickly and urgently is obviously understood by all. Would like to be updated on Trumbull's progress. These regiments were being sent to reinforce American forces besieging Quebec after a failed assault at the end of December 1775. Trumbull wrote on 2 February 1776 about his inability to provide funds for the regiment, but Washington wrote Trumbull on 9 February 1776 expressing happiness that Congress had given Connecticut $12,500, which could be used to finance the regiment.

Signer of the U.S. Constitution.

Cambridge Jany 21. 1776
In the hurry of my last dispatches to you of the 19th Inst. I forgot to Intimate, that for the Encouragement of the Regt. destined for Canada, a Month's advanced pay will be allowed Officers and Soldiers by me, in behalf of the Congress. At the same time I think it but right, that your should be apprized of the Intention of this Government, to advance their Regt another Month's pay, to enable the men to provide for so long and fatiguing a March, and in the mean time have something for their families to subsist on, during their absence.
I have no doubt, but that this last advance will be pleasing to Congress, and that the Money will be speedily refunded; but as I have no Authority to direct it, and would not appear by any Act of mine, to put these three Regiments for Canada, upon a different footing from those, which have been raising for this Army; I only give you a hint of the Intention of this Government, if you think proper, that the Regiment from your Colony may be placed upon the same footing; as I know all kind of distinctions are considered by Troops with an evil and Jealous Eye.
Such necessaries, as are absolutely requisite for the Men of this Regiment, you will please to have provided upon the best terms you can, and a regular Account with Vouchers thereof kept, that payment may be made. The Importance of dispatch, will I am persuaded, appear in so urgent and pressing a light to you, that I need add nothing on this head, but shall be glad to hear what progress you make in the business, being with the sincerest regard and esteem.
G Washington

Washington, George, 1732-1799
Trumbull, Jonathan, 1740-1809

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