Series 6, Military Papers, 1755-1798
A miscellaneous collection of twenty-six volumes dating from the French and Indian War, the American Revolution, and the Quasi-War with France.
A miscellaneous collection of twenty-six volumes concerning the French and Indian War (1754-1763), the American Revolution (1775-1783), and the undeclared, largely unrealized Quasi-War with France (1798-1800), for which the United States began mobilizing an army with George Washington as commander. Only two of these volumes, a 1755 orderly book Washington kept for General Edward Braddock during the French and Indian War and annotated later (A1), and a 1756 Virginia militia memorandum book (A2), also from the French and Indian War, are in Washington's hand. The rest were acquired by him in the course of his military duties. Series 6 is divided into three subseries, A, B, and C.
Among these are a few items of particular interest. These include two notebooks (A7 and A8) containing notes made at interrogations of soldiers who deserted from the British army in and around New York City in 1782 and 1783, probably in the hand of Washington's aide Tench Tilghman. Also notable is a group of six British orderly books that were captured by Americans during the Revolutionary War (Subseries 6B). Volume C1 includes a diary recording the observations of an unknown British officer, April - September, 1777, at the battles of Bound Brook and Brandywine and at the British capture of Philadelphia. Volume C5, also kept by an unknown officer, most likely American, contains copies of letters exchanged by American general Benjamin Lincoln and British general Henry Clinton as they negotiated the terms of the American surrender of Charleston in April - May, 1780. Drafts of the articles of capitulation are also included.