Conduct "Unbecoming" in 1756

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Sat Nov 23 00:39:36 UTC 2002

   Fred rejected this, from the Americn Memory database.  But it's darn close
and deserves mention.

<A HREF="">The George Washington Papers at the Library of Congress, 1741-1799</A>George
Washington to Adam Stephen, February 1, 1756 <A HREF="">IMAGES</A> The Writings of George
Washington from the Original Manuscript Sources, 1745-1799. John C.
Fitzpatrick, Editor.

Alexandria February 1, 1756.

Sir: If you find that a good road by Ross's Mill can be so easily cut, the
sooner it is set about the better. As the Governor is still silent concerning
what I represented about building a fort on Patterson's Creek, I would have
you desist, at least for a while, and erect such buildings as are absolutely
necessary at Fort Cumberland, and no more.

You may depend upon it I shall take proper notice of the late proceedings you
speak of, but for certain reasons am obliged to postpone it. Things not yet
being rightly settled for punishing deserters according to their crimes, you
must go on in the old way ofwhipping stoutly.<A HREF="">4</A>

[Note 4: Stephen had asked if he should continue the whipping punishment for
desertion. The other matter was the case of a defiant officer who seemed to
have been imitating Capt. John Dagworthy in questioning Washington's
authority. Stephen did not mention names.] If casks are still wanted, there
should be great care used to provide them in time.

Looking upon our affairs at this critical juncture to be of such importance,
and having a personal acquaintance with General Shirley, which I thought
might add some weight to the strength of our memorial, I solicited leave,
which is obtained, to visit him in person, and accordingly set out in two
days for Boston, having procured letters, &c. from the Governor, which was
the result of a Council for that purpose called. You may depend upon it, I
shall leave no stone unturned for this salutary end; and, I think, if reason,
justice, and every other equitable right can claim attention, we deserve to
be heard.

As I have taken the fatigue &c. of this tedious journey upon myself, (which I
never thought of until I had left Winchester,) I hope you will conduct every
thing in my absence for the interest and honor of the service. And I must
exhort you in the most earnest manner to strict discipline and due exercise
of arms.

You may tell Mr. Livingston from me, that, if the soldiers are not skilled in
arms equal to what may reasonably be expected, that he most assuredly shall
answer it at my return. And I must ingenuously tell you, that I also expect
to find them expert at bush-fighting. You are to order that a particular
account be taken of the provisions that are delivered to the Maryland and
Carolina companies by the commissary.

The Governor seems determined to make the officers comply with the terms of
getting their commissions, or forfeit them, and approves of Dekeyser's
suspension,<A HREF="">5</A> and orders, that he shall not be admitted into the camp. He
seems uneasy at what I own gives me much concern,i.e., that gaming seems to
be introduced into the camp. I am ordered to discourage it, and must desire
that you will intimate the same.

[Note 5: Lehaynsius Dekeyser was tried by court-martial on a charge of
conduct "unbecoming a gentleman and an officer," in cheating at cards, and
found guilty. (See Orders, January 8,ante.)] I have sent Commissions for
McCarty and Doctor Roy; which deliver, and have them declared in Orders.

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