AMHERST, Jeffrey (1717-1797), Major General, Commander of British forces in America. Letter signed ("Jeff Amherst") to Col. [John] Bradstreet, Deputy Quartermaster General, Camp at Crown Point, 7 November 1759. 1½ pages, folio, neatly separated along central horizontal fold, without loss, otherwise in very fine condition.
AMHERST FROM CROWN POINT. An excellent letter written from Crown Point, the northernmost British outpost on Lake Champlain, formerly Fort St. Frédéric, abandoned by the French to Amherst on 1 August. To Bradstreet ( c.1711-74) his very able Anglo-Acadian Quartermaster, Amherst forwards a letter for Mr. Mortier, Deputy Paymaster General, requesting £4000 "immediately wanted for the Pay of the Artificiers employed on the Works here." He requests Bradstreet to pass on instructions to Captain Wrightson of the Iniskilling Regiment, if still at Albany, to "proceed with it to this Camp with all possible dispatch." If Wrightson has already left Albany, the troops are to be put in charge of "some other officer" who is to be furnished "all the aid he may stand in need of," including escorts and "Boats to cross the Lakes." Replying to Bradstreet's complaint of desertions, Amherst states that "the Spirit of Mutiny & Desertion seems general," and suggests that "the only way of punishing it among the Provincials [American troops] is to mulct all those that do go off, without leave, of every Farthing of Pay that may be due to them from the Crown for their Labor," without exception. He adds that until he knows exactly how many troops are coming down te Mohawk River, he cannot specify "what Troops will go down the Hudson's River," but "you may depend on two Battalions," totalling 1,700 men, "Exclusive of [James] Montgomery's, which I conclude can March from Albany, and the opposite Shore, to their Quarters." The rest of his letter concerns Quartermaster affairs, especially the sale of surplus cattle at auction, "which I believe will prove the most advantageous method to the Public."