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March Date, Friday, August 18th, Day 63

Greetings Friends, I wish you all the joy of the day.

When last I wrote you, seems only mnutes ago, but I know it was days ago, there was something afoot in the Camps. Indeed, the Generals Washington and Rochambeau had received a communication from via Newport, from Admiral De Grasse, in the Carribean, stating he would be in the Chesapeake in Mid-August. The Camp has been a bee-hive of activity since that moment. A dispatch was sent back to the French at Newport, I supose, as a messenger left the camp on the fly.....also, Duportail ( you remember, he was the one that suggested we could not hold a seige against the British, in this place ) was also sent out of the camp, on another apparent mission of some sort, but we know not where he is going, either. All seems very secret......

There was much commotion in Officer Country, with a lot of coming and going of dispatches and dispatchers, horses, wagons and much rank all about. Tis seems we can only wonder what tis all about. The Company Officers apparently are also not in the know, or if they are, they are being very quiet. But tis for sure, we will not be here much longer, methinks.

Indeed, as I state this, the Order has just come down to prepare to strike the Camp, and be ready to move on the morrow! Oh Gawd! Tis early in the day yet and we have much to do. The tents to be struck, the wagons loaded, the baggage train to be in place, the artillary to be prepared. All personal gear to be attended to, cartriges boxes filled, uniform and acoutrements to be inplace, and ready to go. This camp is but a blur of activity, the men all about, shouting, singing, happy, and yelling to the heavens. Tis finally something to do, and do we must. The Orders indicate that we will be moving from here early in the morning. We all have so much to do, to get ready. The Orders also seem to indicate that we will be going to the North a bit, toward the Hudson. Oh joy, oh joy, the fight looms near......

Further information coming down also indicates that all the French, some 5000 in all, will be on the move as well, but not all of the Americans. Hmmmmmm, this is a bit confusing......? It is starting to look like a lot of the Continentals, and the local Militia, all under the command of General Heath will be staying. Huh..? We can only guess that we will be doing a pincer movement, or something, against the British here in New York, somehow. I guess if the troops that are staying, can mount a front from this direction, then we can do so from ta' other, and squeeze the Brits from two sides. Also, I now remember that the bakers have left the Camp with orders to build some bread ovens about the line around New York, so, it looks like a New York fight to us. Finally.......

Then, of course, it seems that Lafayette and Wayne, with Admiral De Grasse in the Chesapeake, will be able to be a hornet in the British nest. This means we will be engaging our foe on two fronts, at last. So, as it now seems that the French really are going to help us, at least in the short term, we can make a difference here. We can engage with the enemy both in New York, and in the Virginias. I can only pray we are strong enough to carry the fight in both places...At last, we make a move to strike the British..... oh, how long we have waited. Sharpen your Bayonets lads, tis some Brit blood to be flowing soon.... on to New York !

Will write more as soon as I get a moment....light the candle Momma, and get the Good Book out........say some words for us.

I Remain,
At Your Service,
Richard Swartwout
For, 'AMtY'
www.marchtoyorktown.org