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Heath, William (1737-1814) to William Phillips

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC04789.01 Author/Creator: Heath, William (1737-1814) Place Written: Boston, Massachusetts Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 9 June 1778 Pagination: 2 p. : docket ; 30.1 x 18.5 cm.

Summary of Content: Written by Heath as American commander in charge of the Convention Army, which consisted of the British prisoners of war from the Saratoga campaign, to General Phillips as the highest ranking officer in captivity with the Convention Army. References Phillips's letter of 8 June 1778 where he complains of restrictions put on the movement of his men. Heath previously gave orders saying the prisoners were not allowed to travel to Watertown anymore. The prisoners were housed in Watertown previously because there were too many to keep them all in Cambridge. Heath says that exchanges have culled the numbers of the Convention Army and that the Watertown barracks were not needed anymore. Also says the Massachusetts legislature asked for the barracks back. Says no officers can say they have been mistreated under his watch. Says he will pay every attention to officers' quarters at Rutland. Claims he will try not to infringe on the Convention and that officers will not be separated from their men "as far as Circumstances will admit." Says he will be sailing in the harbor tomorrow and hopes Phillips will join him. Phillips was the ranking officer in the Convention Army after General John Burgoyne left for Britain on 5 April 1778. There is tape along the entire length of one of the long edges.

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Historical Era: American Revolution, 1763-1783

Subjects: Revolutionary WarRevolutionary War GeneralMilitary HistoryConvention ArmyPrisoner of WarContinental ArmyMilitary CampTreatyMaritime

Sub Era: The War for Independence

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