GENERAL WASHINGTON'S ORDER FOR DELAWARE RIVER DURHAM BOATS
On Sunday, December 1st, 1776, Commander-in-Chief George Washington ordered Lt. Colonel Richard Humpton, an officer in the 13th Pennsylvania Regiment, "To proceed to the two ferry's near Trenton and to see all the boats there put in the best order... from both above and below... those ferry's... You will particularly attend to the Durham boats which are very proper for this purpose of carrying over the troops and baggage in most expeditious manner..." This act is chapter one in the fight for the Delaware in 1776.
[New] Brunswick DecemR. 1: 1776
You are to proceed to The Two ferry's near Trentown and to see all the boats there put in the best order with a Sufficiency of Oars and poles and at the same time to Collect all the Additional Boats you [can] from both above and below and have them brought to those ferry's and Secured for the purpose of Carrying over the Troops & Baggage in most expeditious Manner: & for this purpose you will get every Assistance in the power of Quarter Master General & any person in his department. You will particularly attend to the Durham Boats which are very proper for this purpose. The Baggage & Stores of the Army should be got over the River as soon as possible and placed at some Convenient place a little back from it.
I am Sir, Your Most ObT. ServT.
Original letter penned by Robert Hanson Harrison, secretary to General Washington, dated from New Brunswick, New Jersey, on December 1, 1776, to Colonel Richard Humpton ordering Humpton to secure Delaware River craft for the four crossings of the Delaware River to be made by the Continental Army during the month of December 1776, which enabled the Americans to secure the Trenton-Princeton victories known as the first military turning point during the American Revolutionary War and ultimately securing our political independence in 1783.
TRANSCRIBED AND ANNOTATED BY:
HARRY KELS SWAN
PRINCIPAL HISTORIC PRESERVATION SPECIALIST
SWAN HISTORICAL FOUNDATION
WASHINGTON CROSSING STATE PARK
TITUSVILLE, NEW JERSEY
APRIL 10, 1983.
Classification: Printed Materials
Physical Location: North Gallery
Date Added to Virtual Museum: Sunday, April 11, 2004
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