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Gray, James (fl. 1777) to Theodore Parsons

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02437.00623 Author/Creator: Gray, James (fl. 1777) Place Written: Albany, New York Type: Letter Date: 14 July 1777 Pagination: 3 p : address ; 25.7 x 20.5 cm.

Later copy. Reports on the Continental evacuation of Ticonderoga: "As to the particulars of the retreat of the Army, I am not at present able to communicate,- thus much as to myself I can say, that I have lost all my Baggage of every kind except what I have now on, which is the condition every one is in who left Ticonderoga-" Expects British General John Burgoyne to advance on Albany. Also expects reinforcement of 3,000 men from General [John] Sullivan. Reports that his force, at Fort Edward, consists of 10,000 men. Gives an account of his retreat from Skeensboro (present day Whitehall, New York). Instructs Parsons to direct his reply to the Kings Arms Tavern. In a post script, declares "The Fatigue has almost killed me-" and plans to resign his commission "to some person who can undergo the Hardship of a Campaign better." Docket, on page one, indicates that the original version of this letter was presented to the Massachusetts Historical Society.

[draft]
Albany July 14.th 1777
Sir
By a gentlemen just setting off for Casco Bay, I have an opportunity to send you a line, to inform you that I am here in a weak State of health, having just arrived from Fort Edward, - As to the particular of the retreat of the Army, I am not at present able to communicate, - thus much as to myself I can say, that I have lost all my Baggage of every kind except what I have now on, which is the condition every one is in who left Ticonderoga -
Burgogne with his army are in possession of the Post which I commanded at Skeensboro', and are expected to advance towards this place every day - Our force at Fort Edward is at present about 10 Thousand men, who are determined to maintain their ground at all events - Our army augments very fast - Genl, Sullivan is hourly expected, with 3 thousand men, so that I shall be able if I live to give you a favourable account of affairs the first opportunity - If it were possible [2] I would write by this person to Mrs Gray, but he cannot Tarry - I shall write every opportunity -
Upon our retreat from Skeensboro' to Fort [Hun], I had the command of 220 men, and was pursued by a party of the British Troops under the command of Colo Hill of the 9th Regimt, and upon my arrival at Fort-Ann made a halt, - this was the 11th inst. the 7th in the morning, countermarch'd my party into the woods about half a mile, when I met the Enemy, and gave them fire which they return'd and after skirmishing with them about four hours, oblig'd them to retreat to a mountain, where they had a covering party, - I had this day two killed & three wounded - killed of the Enemy three, their wounded they carried off the 8th in the forenoon attacked them again, & took 1 Captain, 1 Surgeon, & 2 privates, their killed and wounded are unknown -
I can say nothing further at present concerning after conduct, as the time will not allow me -
Pray write me every opportunity and address your Letters to the Kings Arms Tavern, as [3] long as you know I am here -
my love and duty to the family
I am yours & c
James Gray
N.B. The Fatigue has almost killed me -
If I can with Honour, I shall resign my commission, to some person who can undergo the Hardship of a Campaign better -
yours ut supra
J G - y

[address leaf]
Mr Theodore Parsons
Newbury Port
New England

[written in different hand on top of page]
Capt James Gray to
Theodore Parsons of
Newburyports -
[written in different hand on left margin]
The original of this letter having been presented to the ma[illegible] Hist. for - this copy is not to be used for publication without the society's leave - (JW. [vit] 56)

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