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PRELIMINARY INDEX, AND NOTES HISTORICAL AND LEGAL.
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE.
Washington to Luzerne. *
HEADQUAPTERS, November 13, 1782. SIR: I am honored with your excellency's letter of the 6th instant, on a subject not more distressing to you, sir, than to myself. I have, at various periods of the war, written to Congress and to the States, endeavoring to convince them of the necessity of passing the most vigor. ous laws to prevent the inhabitants from furnishing the enemy with provisions. I will write them again and will use every argument I am master of for that purpose. In all other nations, I believe, the persons guilty of that crime are punished with death, and unless the States on this continent will pass similar laws, I see no means of putting a stop to that destructive practice. Anything the military could do in that matter would be in vain. To post as many guards as would be necessary would be destructive to the army, as those guards would be continually liable to be cut off by the enemy, and, indeed, the whole army would not suffice to guard the extensive coasts where this illicit commerce is carried on. I have the honor to be, &c.,
Washington to Captain Asgill.
HEADQUARTERS, November 13, 1782. SIR: It affords me singular pleasure to have it in my power to transmit you the enclosed copy of an act of Congress of the 7th instant by which you are released from the disagreeable circumstances in which you bave so long been. Supposing you would wish to go into New York as soon as possible, I also enclose a passport for that purpose.
Your letter of the 18th of October came regularly to my hand. I beg you to believe that my not answering it sooner did not proceed from
MSS. Dep. of State; 6 Sparks' Dip. Rev. Corr., 100.
+ 6 Sparks' Dip. Rev, Corr., 99. See other letters respecting Captain Asgill's case, supra, July 29, October 25, November 6 and 9, 1782.