« PreviousContinue »
ed within one of your posts. Your tion is not similar, they are obexcellency may conceive my sen- jects who may be sent in exchange fation on this occafion, and will for me, or are persons whom the imagine how much more I must treatment I receive might affect. have been affected, by a refusal to It is no less, Sir, in a confidence re-conduet me back the next night in the generosity of your mind, as I had been brought. Thus be- than on account of your superior come a prisoper, I had to concert station, that I have chosen to immy escape. I quitted my uniform, portune you with this letter. I and was passed another way in. have the honour to be, with the the night, without the American greatest respect, Sir, your excel. pofts, to neutral ground; and be. lency's most obedient, ing informed I was beyond all and most humble servant, armed parties, and left to press
John ANDRE, Adj. Gen. for New-York, I was taken at His Excellency Gen. Washington, &c. Tarry-town, by some volunteers...
Thus, as I have had the honour He then said, that he came on to relate, was I betrayed (being fhore from the Vulture hoop of Adjutadt-general of the British war, in the night of the twentyarmy) into the vile condition of an first of September inst. somewhere enemy within your pofts. . under the Haverstraw Mountain;
Having avowed myself a British that the boat he came on fhore in officer, I have nothing to reveal carried no flag, and that he had on but what relates to myself, which a furtout coat over his regimen. is true on the honour of an officer, tals, and that he wore bis fur and a gentleman.
tout coat when he was taken :The requeft I have made to That he met General Arnold on your excellency, and I am con- the shore, and had an interview ícious that I address myself well, with him there.. He also said, is, that in any rigour policy may that when he left the Vulture floop dictate, a decency of conduct to- of war, it was understood he was wards me may mark, that though to return that night; but it was unfortunate, I am branded with then doubted : and if he could not nothing dishonourable; as no mo. return he was promised to be contive could be mine, but the fer- cealed on thore in a place of safety, vice of my king, and as I was in- until the next night, when he was voluntarily an impostor.
to return in the same manner he Another requeft is, that I may came on fhore ; and when the be permitted to write an open let. next day came, he was solicitous ter to Sir Henry Clinton, and to get back, and made enquiries another to a friend for cloaths and in the course of the day, how linen.
1 he should return, when he was I take the liberty to mention informed he could not return the condition of some gentlemen that way, and he must take the at Charles-town, who, being ei. route he did afterwards. He also ther on parole, or under protec- said, that the first.notice he bad of tion, were engaged in a confpira. his being within any of our posts, cy against us. . Though their litua. was, being challenged by the len
[B 6] 2
try, which was the first night he Return of Ordnance at Weft-
, New York, Sept. 7, 1780. in the morning.
The following papers were laid Sir, before the board, and shewn to I AM told my name is made Major Andrè, who confessed to the known to you, and that I may board, that they were found on hope your indulgence in permit. him when he was taken ; and said ting me to meet a friend near they were concealed in his boot, your out-posts. I will endeavour except the país:-
to obtain permission to go out with A pass from General Arnold to a flag which will be sent to Dobb's John Anderson, which name Major Ferry, on Monday next, the 11th, Andrè acknowledged he assumed. at 12 o'clock, when I shall be
Artillery orders, September 5, happy to meet Mr. G- t. 1780.
Should I not be allowed to go, Estimate of the force at Weft. ,the officer who is to command the Point and its dependencies, Sep. escort, between whom and my tember 1780.
self no distinction need be made, Eftimate of men to man the can speak on the affair. works at West-point, &c.
Let me intreat you, 'Sir, to
* Left ie Thould be supposed chat Colonel Sheldon, to whom the above letter is aadressed, was privy to the plot carrying on by General Arnold, it is to be observed, that the letter was found among Arnold's'papers, and had been transmitted by Colonel Sheldon, who, it appears from a letter on the oth of Sep tember to Arnold, which inclosed it, had never heard of John Anderson be. fore. Arnold, in his answer on the 10th, acknowledged he had not commi. nicared it to him, though he had informed him, that he expected a person would come from New York, for the purpofe of bringing him intelligence.
+ It appears by the same letter that Arnold had written to Mr. Anderson, under the signature of Gullayus. His words are, “ I was obliged to write with great caution to him, my letter was signed Guftavus, to prevent any discovery, in cale it fell into the hands of the onsmy."
favour, a maiter so interesting to drè being concluded, he was re. the parties concerned, and which manded into custody. is of so private a nature, that the The following letters were laid public on neither side can be in- before the board and read :-Benejured by it.
dict Arnold's letter to Gen. Wash. I mall be happy, on my part, ington, dated September 23, 1780 ; in doing any act of kindness to Colonel Robinson's letter to Geyou, in a family or property con- neral Wathington, dated Septem. cern of a similar nature.
ber 25, 1780; and General ClinI truft I shall not be detained: ton's letter, dated the 26th of Sepbut should any old grudge be a tember, 1780, (inclosing a letter of caufe for it, I should rather risk the same date from Benedict Arthat, than neglect the business in nold) to General Wathington. question, or assume a mysterious character to carry on an innocent On board the Vulture, Sept. 2 affair; and, as friends have ad
1780. vised, get your lines by stealth. [ SIR, am, Sir, with all regard,
THE heart which is conscious Your most obedient, of its own rectitude, cannot athumble servant,
tempt to palliate a step which the JOAN ANDERSON. world may 'censure as wrong. I Colonel Sheldon.
have ever acted from a principle of
love to my country, since the Major Andrè observed, that this commencement of the present' un. letter could be of no furce in happy content between Great Brithe case in question, as it was tain and her Colonies: the faine written in New York, when he principle of love to my country was under the orders of General actuates my present conduct, howClinton, but that it tended to ever it may appear inconsistent to prove, that it was not his inten- the world, who very seldom judge tions to come within our linez. right of any man's actions.
The board having interrogated I have no favour to aik for my. Major André, about his concep- self. I have too often experienced tion of his coming on thore under the ingratitude of my country to the sanction of a flag, he said, attempt it; but from the known “ that it was impossible for him to humanity of your excellency, I suppose he came on thore under am induced to ask your protection that fanction; and added, that if for Mrs. Arnold, from every inhe came on Thore under that fanc. sult and injury that a mistaken tion, he certainly might have re- vengeance of my country may ex-. turned under it.”
pose her to. It ought to fall only Major Andrè having acknow- on me; she is as good and as in. ledged the preceding fa&ts, and nocent as an angel, and is incapa. being asked whether he had any ble of doing wrong. I beg The thing to say respecting them, an, may be permitted to return to her swered, he left them to operate friends in Philadelphia, or to with the board.
come to me, as the may chuse, The examination of Major An. From your excellency I have no
[B b] 3
fears on her account, but the may fame manner as I do, I muft de luffer from the mistaken fury of fire you will order him to be set the country.
at liberty, and allowed to return I have to request that the in- immediately. Every step Major clored letter may be delivered to Andrè took, was by the advice and Mrs. Arnold, and the permitted to direction of General Arnold, even write to me.
that of taking a feigned name, and I have also to ask that my of course not liable to cenfure cloaths and baggage, which are of for it.. little consequence, may be sent to I am, Sir, not forgetting our me; if required, their value shall former acquaintance, your very be paid in money. I have the hos humble servant, pour to be, with great regard and
Bey. ROBINSON, esteem, your excellency's most obe.
Col. Roy. Americ. dient servant,
His Excellency Gen. Washington. . B. ARNOLD.
. His Excellency Gen Washington.
New York, Sept. 26, 1780.
BEING informed that the men of my fanily, Colonel War- kin
king's Adjutant-general in Amewick, and Major Franks, I think
rica has been : stopt, under Major
tic myself in honour bound to declare,
general Amold's passports, and is that they, as well as Joshua Smith,
detained a prisoner in your excelEll; (who I know is suspected)
lency's army, I have the honour are totally ignorant of any tran
to inform you, Sir, that I permitfa&ions of mine, that they had
ted Major Andrè to go to Majorreason to believe were injurious to
general Arnold, at the particular the public.
request of that general officer. You Vulture, off Sinfink, Sept. 25, 1780. will perceive, Sir, by the inclosed .: SIR,
paper,, that a flag of truce was I AM this moment informed, sent to receive Major Andrè, and that Major Andrè, Adjutant-gene. passports granted for his return. ral of his majesty's army in Ame- I therefore cannot have a doubt rica, is detained as a prisoner by but your excellency will imme. the army under your command. diately direct, that this officer has It is therefore incumbent on me permission to return to my orders to inform you of the manner of his at New York. falling into your hands : he went I have the honour to be, your up with a fag, at the request of excellency's most obedient, and General Arnold, on public busi- most humble servant, ness with him, and had his permit
H. CLINTOX. to return by land to New York. His Excellency Gen. Washington. Upon these circumstances, Major André cannot be detained by you, New York, Sept. 26, 1780. without the greatest violation of Sur, flags, and cootrary to the custom IN answer to your excellency's and usage of all nations; and as I message, respecting your Adjutantimagine you will fee this in the general, Major Andrè, and deli
vering my ideas of the reason The Board having considered the why he is detained, being under letter from his Excellency General my passports, I have the honour to Wathington respecting Major Aninform you, that I apprehend a drè, Adjutant general to the Bri. few hours must return Major An- tish army, the confeffion of Major drè to your Excellency's orders, as Andrè, and the papers produced that officer is assuredly under the to them, report to his Excellency protection of a flag of truce, sent the Commander in Chief, the fol. by me to him, for the purpose of a lowing facts, which appear to them conversation, which I requested to relative to Major Andrè: hold with him relating to myself, First, That he came on shore and which I wished to commu- from the Vulture floop of war, in nicate, through that ofticer, to the night of the 2117 of September your Excellency.
insiant, on an interview with GeI commanded at the time at neral Arnold, in a private and feWeft-point, and had an undoubted cret manner. right to send my flag of truce for Secondly, That he changed his Major Andrè, who came to me dress within our lines ; and under ander that protection; and having a feigned name, and in a disguised held my conversation with him, I habit, pafled our works at Stoney delivered him confidential papers and Verplank's poinis, the even. in my own hand-writing, to de- ing of the 22d of September inliver to your Excellency. Thinking ftant, and was taken the morning it much properer he should return of the 23d of September instant, by land, I directed him to make at Tarry-town, in a disguised hause of the feigned name of John bit, he being then on his way for Anderson, under which he had by New-York; and when taken, he my direction come on shore, and had in his possession several papers, gave him my paifports to go to the which contained intelligence for White Plains, on his way to New- the enemy. York.
This officer cannot, The Board having maturely therefore, fail of being imme- considered these facts, do also rediately fent' to New York, as he port to his Excellency General was invited to a conversation with Warhington, that Major Andrè, me, for which I sent him a flag of Adjutant-general to the British truce, and finally gave him paff- army, ought to be considered as a ports for his safe return to your loy front the enemy, and that, excellency; all which I had then agreeable to the law and usage a right to do, being in the actual of nations, it is their opinion, he service of America, under the ought to suffer death. orders of General Washington, Nathaniel Green, major-gene. and commanding-general at Weft- ral, president ; Stirling, majorpoint, and its dependencies. . general; La Fayette, major-gene
I have the honour to be your ral; Ar. St. Clair, major-general; excellency's most obedient, and R. Howe, major-general; Steuben, very humble servant,
.major-general; Samuel H. Par.
B. ARNOLD. fons, brigadier - general ; James His Excellency Sir Henry Clinton. Clinton, brigadier-general ; Henry
[B b] 4 ..