Spies & Intelligence
MORRISís House Febr: 9th 1781
Agreable to your Letter of yesterday and the Desire of Major DELANCEY I have been with a Patrole this morning almost as far as Dobsís Ferry.
I took a View of the Blockhouse at Sneadingís in such a manner, that the rebels could not see us from thence, and found it strengthened by Palisades round the Ditch of the Breastwork, in which the Blockhouse stands. Which was not the case when I saw it last Fall.
The following is all the Intelligence I could get from a very good Friend to Government near Dobsís Ferry:--
The Guard at the Blockhouse consists of 60 men. The Officers lay some times during the Night in the House next ot it, but not every Night. Two Guns are mounted in the Blockhouse; I could not learn their Caliber; it is supposed they are very small ones.
The Detachment at Nyhock it is said, to amount to 80 men and upwards, quartered in the Houses near the landing Place. Nine or ten Whale and flat bottomed Boats are there. A whale Boat goes constantly as a Water Patrole between Nyhock and Sneadings Ferry.
The Rebels come differently with one or two Whale or flat bottomed Boat from either of those Posts and land between Dobsís Ferry and Philipsís. Their Intention seems to be, to way lay the Refugees or Patroles that might go up that way, Last Saturday about thirty of them landed near Philipsís and lay all night till day break in the Church there, and Monday last a party lay from the Morning till noon in the old Yager Hutts, stopping every person coming down.
In these Excursions they plunder the Inhabitants very much.
It is universally asserted, that the rebels on the other side of the Croton drew seven Days provisions, and that they were collecting at North-Castle. It is supposed that either a Forage or an other Attack upon the Refugees is their Object. I believe the Latter.
Perhaps I shall be able in a few Days, to give you a circumstantial Account about the other Points you want to know. E[lisha] B[ECKWITH] has promised me, to go up to Tarrytown and to learn all those things either from REVIER or WYLEY or to send one of them here. WYLEY is the man who gave me the Intelligence I wrote to you the day before yesterday.
You will be good enough to tell Major DELANCEY, that I was acquainted to Day, that the Hay supposed to be had at Tuckey-hoe, was almost all gone, the Refugees having been very busy these three Weeks, in carrying it off with Slays, Carts and upon their horses. Major Genl. LOSSBERG gives his best Compliments to you, so does MELTZHAIMER and I am allways
University of Michigan, William L. Clements Library, Sir Henry Clinton Papers, Volume 145, item 43.
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