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Knox, Henry (1750-1806) to William Knox

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02437.00712 Author/Creator: Knox, Henry (1750-1806) Place Written: Hopewell, New Jersey Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 25 June 1778 Pagination: 3 p. : address : docket ; 18.8 x 16 cm.

Reports that the British left Philadelphia. He and Lucy went into the city, but had to leave because it "stunk so abominably." Notes that the American and British armies are twenty miles apart, at Princeton and Allentown respectively. Comments on the great number of deserters in the British army. Writes, "if General Actions had no other consequences than merely the kill'd and wounded, we should attack them in 24 hours, but the fate of posterity and not the illusive [sic] [brilliancy] of military Glory govern's our [Fabian] Commander, the Man under God to whom America owes her present prospects of peace and happiness."

"Fabian" suggests a commander who seeks victory by delay.

[draft]
Hopewell Township New Jersey
4 o'clock am 25 June 1778
My dear Brother
The Enemy have evacuated Philadelphia on the 19th. Lucy and I went in but it [stunk] so abominably that it was impossible to stay there as was her first design - The Enemy are now at allen Town about 10 miles south East at prince-Town and we at about 6 miles north Prince Town so that the two armies are now about 19 or 20 miles apart - we are now on the March towards them, and their movements this day will determine whether we shall come in close contact with each other - we have now very numerous [2] parties harrasing and teasing them on all quarters - desertion prevails exceedingly in their Army especially among the Germans above three hundred German and English now deserted since they left Philadelphia had we a sufficiency of numbers we should be able to force them to a similar treaty with Burgoyne - but at present we have not quite such sanguine hopes. We shall however do every thing thats possible consistent with the happiness of the people of america - if General Actions had no other consequences than merely the kill'd and wounded, we should [3] attack them in 24 hours, but the fate of posterity and the illusive [brilliancy] of military Glory, govern's, our Fabian Commander, the Man under God to whom America owes her present prospects of peace and happiness.
I am dear Billey
Your affectionate
HKnox

Lucy and babes are gone to MrLotts [text loss]

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