<br /> Lee Letter: n581

Washington and Lee University

Sender: John Hanson
Recipient: Thomas Sim Lee

My Dear sir

I am obliged to you for your favours of the 5th and 6th Instant. The
officer Who was intrusted by Maj. Gile to procure the necessary
Cloathing for our new regiment has been Supplied with Shirts and other
Cloathing Sufficient for those Troops and I believe left this place
Eight or ten days Ago. Six hundred Tents are preparing for the Southern
Army and will be ready (the Board of War say) and Sent forward in about
three or four Weeks. These are all that Can be had at this place and
will be insufficient to supply the Army to the Southward, and as they
will I suppose be immediately to Virginia the regiment At Annapolis
will have but little Chance in Coming upon a part of them unless they
Shall have joined the Army before the Tents Arrive. A great quantity of
Canvas is now lying And has been for Some time at Boston – yet so it has
been managed that it has not been brought forward. And the Season being
so far Advanced, our people must I am afraid Suffer greatly before it
Can be transported So great a distance. Andrie was hanged on Monday
last. He made no discoveries. He was asked at the gallows if he had
Anything to say. His answer was that he was not afraid to dye that, he
was prepared for it, but was Concerned as to the manner, that he had
much rather have been Shot and desired that it might be observed that
his behavour was becoming that of a Gentleman and Soldier. He was
dressed in a new suit of Regimentals with his Sword by his side. Smith
it is Said will Share the Same fate in a little time. Old Franks is
taken up on Suspicion of treasonable practices, and Imprisoned. His son
one of Arnolds Aids it is said is gone off.1

On the 5th Instant the Commander in chief was by a Resolve of Congress
directed to order a Court of inquiry on the Conduct of Gen. Gates And
to appoint an officer to take the Command of the Southern Army untill
Such enquiry be made. Some honorable notice will be taken of the Baron
de Kalb who fell So gloriously in the Cause of America – And the thanks
of Congress will be returned to Generals Smallwood And Gist And to the
officers and men for their Conduct And bravery in the late Action near
Camden. All expectations of the Arrival of the French fleet are now at
an End. Ternay by erecting fortifications on different parts of Rhode
Island has Secured his fleet and the Army against Any Attempts of the
Enemy – this being the Case and Clinton having failed in his designs
against Wes point, it is more than probable his next object Will be to
the Southward – the Climate is favourable for a winter Campaign, And a
Considerable number of men may be Spared from New York without
Hazarding that place, as no attempt Can be made on it by us, while the
Enemy is so far superior at Sea.

I have inclosed you the Crisis Extraordinary upon
finance2 And the last papers.

And am with
Compliments to Mrs. Lee, Dear sir with great esteem & regard, Your
most hble Servt,

John Hanson

The Major3 Set out this Morning on his
return home. I write in great haste indeed there is so little time
between the post Coming in and going out that we have Scarce time to
write at all.

Notes:

Receiver’s copy, Lee, Horsey and Carroll Papers deposit (1985), Maryland
Historical Society.

1 That is, David Franks, a wealthy Philadelphia merchant, and Maj. David
Salisbury Franks, possibly a cousin but not his son. See John T.
Flexner, The Traitor and the Spy: Benedict Arnold and John Andre (New
York: Harcourt, Brace and Co. 1953), p. 221.

2 Thomas Paine’s pamphlet The Crisis Extraordinary published in Philadelphia
on October 4, 1780, under the pen name “Common Sense.” The ninth
essay in the “Crisis” series that Paine had begun in December 1776,
the Extraordinary was a reasoned argument for a more efficient
national and state tax system for financing the war effort. See
Evans, Am. Bibliography, no. 16,918

3 That is, Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer.