Our Collection

At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 70,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Knox, Henry (1750-1806) to Lucy Knox

High-resolution images are available to schools and libraries via subscription to American History, 1493-1943. Check to see if your school or library already has a subscription. Or click here for more information. You may also order a pdf of the image from us here.

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02437.00273 Author/Creator: Knox, Henry (1750-1806) Place Written: Newport, Rhode Island Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 18 April 1776 Pagination: 2p.+addr. + docket. 19.4. x 15.8 cm.

Explains that he has remained in Newport, Rhode Island, where a recent British naval attack had been fended off, to fulfill orders to help protect the town from additional attacks. He will depart for Norwich later in the day, where he hopes to stay with Lucy's cousin Fayerweather on a stop before arriving there. Closes affectionately, affirming his love for his wife and their new daughter Lucy. Knox was then moving southward toward New York, planning coastal defenses against the British navy for Rhode Island and Connecticut in the process.

Newport April 18 1776
My dear Lucy
You will be supriz'd to find my Letter dated from this place; but some spirited Conduct of the troops station'd here in driving away a number of Men of War, render'd [?in] certain that as soon as the enemy find themselves strong enough they will endeavor to destroy this Town - the Governor & Council prevail'd upon me to come down here In order to lay out some necessary works for the preservation of the Town, I came here Yesterday from Providence & shall depart for Norwich to day - I propose calling on your Cousin [Fayerweather] perhaps lodging with him tonight, & shall get to Norwich tomorrow night or saturday morning - I write this surrounded by a number of Gentleman & the post fast [agoing] my heart Glows with the purest flame to my dear dear Lucy friendship joins with the most tender love to heighten the affection May that God who delights in virtue preserve my Dearest love & her sweet babe - Give my love to Billey & Harry Jackson and all other friends - beleive me to hold you in constant sweet remembrance. Adieu my love
Harry Knox
[address leaf]
Newport 2d[illegible]

Mrs. Lucy Knox
Genl Knox April 18th

Order a CopyCitation Guidelines for Online Resources