New Jersey: Original, 1782. Original Letter. 8 1/2 X 13 1/4 Inches. Autograph Letter Signed. Very Good. Item #4201
Handwritten letter from Jonathan Dayton, signer of the U.S. Constitution and namesake of Dayton, Ohio, to his father, Col. Elias Dayton. Elias would later be promoted to Brig. General by Washington. Jonathan Dayton was arrested in 1807 for treason in connection with Aaron Burr's conspiracy; he was never tried, but the arrest ended his political career. This Revolutionary War date letter of particular interest as it discusses one of the major issues confronting the Continentatl Army at the time.
In part: "...The particulars of the robbery of the flag you have doubtless heard. It appears by the British Officer that it was their own people, three of which from his former observation he says he shall be able to detect. Had it not been for the stupidity or knavery of the pilot, who run them on the middle grounds, the vessel would have got up that night and the mony course would have been saved... If mama could share sixteen or eighteen pounds of her butter, I wish it could be sent me by the next provision wagon..."
In 1782, the stealing of both American and signal flags by the British presented a significant problem for the Continental Army. British troops were stealing the flags and using them to go undercover and steal goods from the American Army. In this letter, it appears that Jonathan Dayton is writing his father Elias to inform him of an event where three or more British troops stole a flag and used it to commandeer supplies of the Continental Army. Washington himself actually wrote to Elias Dayton ten days later concerning the issues of flag stealing.
Light wear to edges. Paper loss to top where original wax seal was removed upon opening. Signature of Jonathan Dayton a bit faint.