To Honorable Robert Morris, Esq. January 24, 1782
From the original at the New-York Historical Society.
Second Street Jan. 24. 1782
As some convenience may arise to you in your difficult office by knowing matters before hand I communicate to you the following.
Some officers of the Army were with me this morning, by deputation, to request me to draw up a petition for them to general Washington respecting their pay, and I find it is intended to be a general one — As I am sensible of the inability of the Treasury to answer immediate demands, and that it is renewing care, to the general who already knows their wants I entered into some conversation with them on the subject by mentioning — that the state of the Treasury was now improving — that the Taxes laid this year were real and valuable and that any necessary demands just now might rather injure than promote their interest, and that though I would wish to oblige them, I should rather they would in this instance excuse me, as I know, exclusive of the reasons already mentioned it would be only adding to the distress of the general —
From some expressions they used, I believe they do not expect an immediate payment, but only a payment of their interest. I forbore to enquire much as I wished them to suspend their petition — But if the payment of the interest will satisfy them for the present, and the Treasury can do it, or begin to do it, it may answer a good purpose — If you should hear no more on the subject it will be well — if you should, the hint may be of some use, as it would be a pity, and might be a misfortune, to have any thing like the scene of last year reacted
I am Sir your Ob. Hble Servant