Adams, Samuel (1722-1803) to Roger Sherman
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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC04757 Author/Creator: Adams, Samuel (1722-1803) Place Written: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 11 August 1777 Pagination: 1 p. : docket ; 32.1 x 20.6 cm.
Written by Adams as a Contiental Congressman from Massachusetts to Sherman as a Contiental Congressman from Connecticut. References Sherman's letter of 11 July 1777. Says Sherman's rumor has turned into a fact as Fort Ticonderoga has fallen "shamefully." Adams castigates Schuyler for not properly defending the fort and for having no confidence in his troops. Adams is especially outraged by the general's report "a very great part of the army naked -- without blankets -- ill armed." Says General Horatio Gates has taken command of the North and says "I trust our Affairs in that Quarter will soon war a more promising Aspect." Says 200 ships have recently been seen near the Capes of Delaware and are steering for the Chesapeake Bay.
Both Adams and Sherman signed the Declaration of Independence.
Dear Sir Phila Augt 11. 1777
I duly received your obliging Letter of the 11th of July. I thank you for the favor, and beg you to continue to write to me as often as your Leisure will admit of it. The Rumour you mention'd has since appeard to be a serious Fact. We have lost Ticonderoga, and as far as I can yet judge; shamefully I was going to add, villainously; for indeed I cannot account for it, but upon the want of Principles. The whole appears to me to carry the the evident marks of Design. But I hope & believe it will [struck: be] undergo the strictest [serving] The People at large ought not, they will not be satisfied, until a thorough Inquiry is made [inserted: into] the Course of an Event in which their Honor and safety is so deeply interested. The only Letter recevd by Congress from St Clair, you have seen published under their sanction. Schuyler has written a series of weak & uninterested to Things in a Stile of Dispondence which alone, I think it sufficient for the Removal of him from that Command; for if he Sir expresses the true Feelings of his Heart, it cannot be expected that the bravest Veterans would fight under such a General, admitting they had no suspicion of [struck: Jealousies] Treachery. In a letter dated the 4th Instant as still water, he writes in a tone of perfect Despair. He seems to have no Confidence in his Troops, nor the States from whence Reinforcements are to be drawn. A third Part of his Continental Troops, he told us, consists "of Boys Negroes & aged Men not fit for the Field or any other Service". "A very great Part of the Army naked- without Blanketts - ill armed and very deficient in Accontrements without a Prospect of Relief"- "Many, &c Many of the Officers wod be a Disgrace to the most contemptible Troops that ever was collected." The Exertions of others of them of a different Character "counteracted by the worthless." "Genl Burgoyne is bending his course this way. He will probably be here in Eight Days, and unless we are well reinforced" (which he does not expect) "as much farther as he pleases to go".- Was ever any poor General more mortified? But he has by this Time receivd his Quieties. Gates takes the Command there, agreeably, to what you tell me in the Wish of the People; and I trust our Affairs in that Quarter will soon wear a more promising Aspect.
The Enemies Ships, upwards of 200 sail, after having been out of sight six Days, were discovered on Thursday last, off Sinepuxint 15 Leagues from the Capes of Delaware flowing towards Chesapeak Bay
Your friends here are well, except Colo Williams, who has been confined a few days, but is growing better. I have a thousand things to say to you, but must defer it to other opportunities, & conclude in Haste, with friendly Regards to your Family, very affectionately yours to
Honle Roger Sherman Sam Adams
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