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Phillips, William (1731?-1781) to George Weedon

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC06493 Author/Creator: Phillips, William (1731?-1781) Place Written: Portsmouth, Virginia Type: Letter signed Date: 12 April 1781 Pagination: 4 p. ; 32.5 x 20 cm.

Summary of Content: Phillips, a British Lieutenant-General, discusses flags of truce and prisoner exchanges with American General Weedon. Writes "the usual and necessary forms must be preserved especially respecting Flags of Truce which are objects of a chaste nature and the rules belonging to them ought never to be violated..." Refers to Moss Armstead, an American soldier sent to negotiate prisoner exchange. Discusses penalties for Americans venturing within British lines. States that all flag vessels must stop at British commodores' ships stationed at Hampton Roads, Virginia, to gain authorization to proceed. States that if British prisoners are taken to Williamsburg, Virginia, or to General John Peter Muhlenberg's post, an equal number of American prisoners will be released. Mentions prisoners parolled by General Benedict Arnold. States "I can not enter upon the matter of Negroes but in the manner admitted and proposed previous to my arrival by Brigadier General Arnold." Relates that General Henry Clinton will make final decisions regarding African American prisoners. Reports that Weedon's if German and British prisoners are not taken to Williamsburg within fourteen days, he will send the American prisoners at his station to New York; he can not hold them longer due to a lack of provisions.

Background Information:

People: Phillips, William, 1731-1781
Weedon, George, 1734-1793
Muhlenberg, John Peter Gabriel, 1746-1807
Arnold, Benedict, 1741-1801
Clinton, Henry, Sir, 1730-1795

Historical Era: American Revolution, 1763-1783

Subjects: Revolutionary WarRevolutionary War GeneralMilitary HistoryGlobal History and CivicsForeign AffairsParolePrisoner of WarTruceMilitary ProvisionsHessiansAfrican American TroopsSlaveryAfrican American History

Sub Era: The War for Independence

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