<br /> Lee Letter: n504

Washington and Lee University

Sender: Committee for Foreign Affairs
Recipient: Arthur Lee

Sir

Two days ago several of your Letters came to hand the latest being of April
6th.1 It is much to be regretted that this
one in particular did not earlier arrive.2
One Copy of its Contents was sent immediately to Genl. Washington and
another to Govr. Trumbull but alas, too late! Fairfield had been
destroyed by the Fire of the Enemy. We are mistaken however if that
Enemy does not find the unprofitableness of this Kind of Warefare
towards their main purpose. America must be dead indeed to all proper
Spirit if such doings will not render her both Vigilant & active,
as in the begining of the Contest.

It is matter of much Conjecture why you have not been able for some months
back to give us interesting Accounts from Spain: All we know is through
Mr. Gérard.3

We have sent so many Setts of the Journals of Congress that you will
doubtless get one. They are chiefly directed to Doctor Franklin. You
will find the parts in which you are personally interested to be under
the following dates, April 6, 15, 20, 21, 22, 26, 28, 30, May 3, 22,
24, 25, 27, June 8.

We shall speedily write again. In the mean Time be assured that we are
with much Regard, Sir, your humble Servants,

James Lovell for the Comtee.

[P.S. ] Sept 16.4 It is probable that all the
papers sent by you up to May 21 have come
safe,5 either in originals or Duplicates or
Triplicates.

Notes:

Receiver’s copy, Lee Family Papers, Houghton Library, Harvard University.
Written and signed by James Lovell. Papers of Continental Congress,
item 79, U.S. National Archives and Records Administration,
Washington, D.C. In a clerical hand.

1 Arthur Lee’s October 5, November 18, December 5, 1778, and January 5, 15,
20, and April 6, 1779, letters to the Committee for Foreign Affairs
were read in Congress on July 15.JCC, 14:836. Lee’s letters are in
PCC, item 83, 1:310 – 11, 373 – 76, 381 – 88, 405 – 8, 425 – 26, 2:148 – 49. All
but those of October 5, 1778, and January 20, 1779, are in Wharton,
Diplomatic Correspondence, 2:839 – 41, 850 – 51, 3:12 – 14, 25 – 26, 110 – 11.

2 See John Jay to George Washington and Jonathan Trumbull, July 13, 1779.

3 For Gérard’s July 12 conference with Congress, see Lovell to Samuel Adams,
July 10, note 5, and July 13, 1779.

4 This September 16 postscript is taken from the FC. It was undoubtedly added
to the later copies of the letter sent by Lovell when he feared the
capture of the earlier dispatches. See Lovell to Arthur Lee,
September 17, 1779.

5 Lee’s May 21, 1779, letter to the Committee for Foreign Affairs was read in
Congress on August 23, 1779. JCC, 14:989.