Methods Proposed for Reducing Desertion

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Source Name Image(s)
CollectionMassachusetts Historical Society: John Adams Papers view image
CollectionLibrary of Congress: MMC, McHenry, James view image
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Document Information
Date May 28, 1799
Author Name James McHenry (primary) Location: War Department
Recipient Name John Adams (primary)
Summary Forwards correspondence detailing the recommended appointment of one man to a post which may soon be declined by another. Reports "ruinous" desertion; recommends 4 methods to combat it: greater discipline, greater care and speed for the delivery of supplies to the troops, the screening of foreigners seeking to join the ranks, and "energy in punishing offenders." Notes that the first is the province of Major Generals Hamilton and Pinckney, and that he (McHenry) will attend to the second -- this now being within his power, as Congress has recently empowered the Secretary of War to provide funds to purchase supplies for the army for the ensuing year. He has already ordered much cloth for the clothing of the troops. Regarding the 3rd method, he has instructed General Hamilton and the recruiting officers to limit the enlistment of foreigners to those who are naturalized, and to prefer natives in every case. In the fourth case, he simply reiterates that deserters must be dealt with swiftly and harshly.
Document Format Autograph Letter Signed
Document Notes Multiple copies of the document exist; these listed under separate collections below.
Content Notes [not available]
Related Persons/Groups John Adams; James McHenry; Lieutenant Colonel Ogden; William Anders; Samuel Owing Smith; lieutenant; foreigners; Major General Alexander Hamilton; Major General Pinckney; Secretary of War; naturalized citizens; recruiting officers; ;
Related Places War Department; Sussex County; New Jersey; ;
Keywords appointment; returns; desertion; discipline; supplies; punishment; clothing; Act of Congress; camp utensils; equipage; medicines; hospital stores; purchases; contracts; importation of cloth; capture; loss; enlistment; good character; court martial; ;
Key Phrases [not available]
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