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At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 65,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Unknown [10th Massachusetts regiment orderly book]

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC01450.016.01 Author/Creator: Unknown Place Written: West Point, New York Type: Autograph manuscript Date: 16 April 1781-1 June 1781 Pagination: 1

Summary of Content: Details daily orders for the troops and assigns field officers and major of the brigades for each day. Many entries deal with supplying and ordering clothing for the soldiers. Reports the results of many court martials, most trying soldiers for desertion and sentencing them to death or 100 lashes. 20 April 1781 entry reports on the prevention of smallpox among the soldiers. Entry for 4 May 1781 discusses sending ranks to join the light infantry under General Marquis de Lafayette. Entry for 6 May 1781 mentions the problem of venereal diseases in the camp and orders the removal of all women over the age of 14 from the garrison. On 28 May 1781, gives detailed instructions on which soldiers are fit for action and must be armed and on duty. Instructs that all soldiers must be accounted for and reports that advertisements will be placed in newspapers advising soldiers on leave to report their whereabouts. States no furloughs can be given out until the end of the campaign and any soldiers on furlough must return. Book is stitched but unbound.


Historical Era: American Revolution, 1763-1783

Keywords/Subjects: Revolutionary War, Military History, Continental Congress, Military Uniforms, Smallpox, Disease, Health and Medical, Desertion, Death Penalty, Military Law, Infantry, Sexuality, Women's History, Journalism

Sub Era: The War for Independence