Philip Schuyler to John Hancock, referred to Wythe & Committee, 24 January 1776
General Philip Schuyler writes to President of Continental Congress John Hancock telling him that some of the troops under his command who already insist on pay as Minutemen would not move on until they were promised pay for their carriages. Schuyler says that he does not believe Congress intended to pay the men on such occasions and so he will not add to their pay until he obtains a confirmation from Congress. Schuyler also talks about having received a letter from the New York Committee of Safety that contained resolutions from Congress and questions regarding Shipwright, Batteau-Men and their wages, and the amount of supplies Schuyler needs for his troops. He answers each of their questions by either simply referring them to Congress or saying that he himself will check with Congress to provide them with accurate answers..
January 24. 1776
Some of the Troops that accompanied me into Tryon County refused to move unless I promised pay for their Carriages, and these same people insist upon pay as Minute Men — Many of the people however expect no pay for their Carriages nor for themselves — Expeditions of this Kind would be very expensive at this Rate — I cannot think that Congress intended pay for the Men on such Occasions — I shall wait their Orders.
I have just now received a Letter from the Committee of Safety at New York inclosing Copies of the Resolutions of Congress of the 8t of January — They observe “That several Things are left indeterminate” in that Resolve, which orders a large Quantity of provisions and Stores to be sent to Fort George: In Answer I have wrote them that “I cannot believe Congress intended any Thing more by sending the Resolution to them than that they should supply me with what I might want: the almost Impossibility of sending a large Quantity from
from New York to Fort George at this Season would countenance this Construction."
They have also wrote to me on the Subject of the Shipwrights, I have given them an Extract of what I have above said to Congress on the Occasion and requested that they would not send any until I applyed for them.
They also seem to think that they were to procure Batteau-Men and ask what Wages are to be allowed them — I have promised to write to Congress on that head — I believe they would be best got in the Vicinity of this Place — If Congress think so I wish to know what Pay to allow to the Officers and Men.
Congress will please to attend to the Naval Department in this Quarter — Perhaps Commodore Douglas will remain — I could wish a Capt. Wynkoop to be employed under him — He is active and brave.
I am Sir
Your Obedient Humble Servant
The Honorable John Hancock Esq. &c. &c.