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gen. Washington. Nothing can be more wicked, no- 1778. thing more false than this diabolical calumny. Gen. Mimin, to whom I made known the industry of his enemies and mine, and the tricks of their emiffaries, writes to you by this conveyance. You know his honor, merit, and services to the public; you also know, that whenever I have been called forth, I have done my best for the establishment of independence and peace: is it generous therefore, that we two should be selected for a. sacrifice to a junto ? For my part I solemnly declare, I never was engaged in any plan or plot for the removal of gen. Washington *, nor do I believe any such plot ever existed so help me. Your's most truly.”

You may credit Gates's not believing such plot; but you must believe differently. The stile of gen. Miffin's letter was " Dear Mr. Audi et alteram partem. I declare to you, with the greatest sincerity and folemnity, that I never formed a plan or a party to injure gen. Washington's command.--I never desired to have any person whomsoever take the command of the American army from him ; nor have I said, or done any thing, of, or respecting him, which the public service did not require; and which I would not have said, with great freedom, to you as his friend, and as a friend to American Independency. I never aspired, in thought,

deprecated the idea as improper and dangerous to myself and to America had that idea occurred, which it never did

* When gen. Gates's letters were examined by me at his seat in Virginia, the latter end of 1781, there was not a single paragraph to Þe met with, that contained any intimation of his being concerned in fach a plan

7778. to move for an inquiry into the causes of the ill fuc

cess attending the campaign of 1776; and then to contrive that such resolves should be given into, as would either remove the general or produce his resignation. Mean while the names of Gates and Mifflin were held up, and played off to ripen the measure. But the anonymous attempt upon the governor of Virginia was reprobated by him; and the Massachusetts assembly was not in a temper to admit of the trial to insnare them. As to gens. Gates and Mifflin, they have cleared themfelves from having any design of removing the com

mander in chief. The former has written to an intimate April correspondent" York Town, 4th April, 1778. Dear

Sir, Last night I received your affectionate letter of the 16th last, that of the 25th of February came to hand a few days before. Your remarks upon the works and defences of your capital city, are just; and I am convinced the town is lost in a very few hours after they are attacked. I have daily and weekly been telling your, and the other eastern delegates, that not only the metropolis, but the whole coafts of New England were, in my opinion, the grand objeet of the enemy's resentment, for the ensuing campaign: they were a parcel of blundering blockheads, not to make that their object the last year. I think they might then have united their whole force, and have made a much more honorable end of their summer's work than it pleased heaven to give them. I find by your letters, that Boston, as well as this part of the continent, is infected by incendiaries who endeavour, by every villainous art, to impress a belief--That gen. Mifflin and myself, are in a league, with other designing and ambitious spirits, to supersede

gen.

gen. Washington. Nothing can be more wicked, no- 1778. thing more false than this diabolical calumny. Gen. Mifflin, to whom I made known the industry of his enemies and mine, and the tricks of their emiffaries, writes to you by this conveyance. You know his honor, merit, and services to the public; you also know, that whenever I have been called forth, I have done my best for the establishment of independence and peace: is it generous therefore, that we two should be selected for a sacrifice to a junto ? For my part I folemnly declare, 1 ; never was engaged in any plan or plot for the removal of gen. Washington *, nor do I believe any such plot ever existed—so help me. Your's most truly."

You may credit Gates's not believing such plot ; but you must believe differently. The stile of gen. Miffin's letter was" Dear Mr. Audi et alteram partem. I declare to you, with the greatest sincerity and folemnity, that I never formed a plan or a party to injure gen. Washington's command.-I never desired to have any person whomsoever take the command of the American army from him ; nor have I said, or done any thing, of, or respecting him, which the public service did not require; and which I would not have said, with great freedom, to you as his friend, and as a friend to American Independency. I never aspired, in thought, to the command of the army, and always would have deprecated the idea as improper and dangerous to myself and to America had that idea occurred, which it never did

* When gen. Gates's letters were examined by me at his feat in Virginia, the latter end of 1781, there was not a single paragraph to be met with, that contained any intimation of his being concerned in such a plan.

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1778. to me.--I hope to see you before long--I most ardently

wish it-and I pledge myself to you and my country, that I can and will justify my character of a patriot in el points to your satisfaction. This disagreeable relation will finish with a paragraph from gen. Washington's letter of March the 28th.—- My caution to avoid every thing that could injure the service, prevented me from communicating, but to a very few of my friends, the intrigues of a faction, which I know was formed against me, since it might serve to publish our internal dissenfions; but their own restless zeaļ to advance their views has too clearly betrayed them, and made concealment on iny part fruitless."

Let us pass on to another event, which has the appearance of being related to some plot. On Monday, January the 12th, the president laid before congress ą packet containing blank papers, which he received the day before from capt. John Folger, who was sent by the commissioners at Paris with dispatches to congress. Mr. Folger was ordered to be confined in close prison; but in the beginning of May, the committee, who were appointed to examine into his conduct reported, “ That they have made as full an examination into that business as the evidence they were able to obtain would permit, and on the whole have no proof of any guilt in Mr. Folger;" whereupon the captain has been permited to go home, and has had all his expences paid him. The committee suspect there has been foul play somewhere, They have taken off the seal from the packet, and sent it back to Paris, to be examined by the original im- pression, that they may see if the fraud can be detected by that mean. What makes the affair nore mysterious

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is; that the other dispatches brought by the captain, con- 1778. tained state papers directed for the late president Mr. Hancock, and had no appearance of having been searched. Time must produce an explanation of this dark business; which has been rendered the more fufpicious by the arrival of Mr. Francey with a letter from Mr. Deane only, dated Paris, September the roth, 1777, recommending him as Mr. Beaumarchais' agent, and pressing the execution of the business which he came upon. The committee for foreign affairs, in their first letter to the commissioners after his arrival, said, “ We think it strange that the commissioners did not jointly write by Mr. Francey, considering the very important designs of his coming over, viz. to settle the mode of payment for the past cargoes, sent by Roderique Hortales and Co. [alias Mr. Beaumarchais] and to make contracts for future. It is certain, that much eclaircissement is, at this late moment, wanting.” Mr. Francey from time to time sent to the committee of commerce, letters upon the business with which he was intrusted, which were reported to congress for their confideration, After being before them once and again, Mr. Francey, as agent for Roderique Hortales and company, settled his contract with them, on the 8th of April. By that contract it was ftipulated among other articles, that the costs of the several cargoes already shipped by the said company, were to be fairly stated at the current prices and usual mercantile charges in France, of the dates at which they were shipped.

Let us for a while employ ourselves about military concerns.

.. . - The

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