The Papers of General Nathanael Greene


To General Andrew Pickens

Sir

As you have but few men with you here, and as you may have it in your power to collect considerable numbers in the rear of the enemy you will repair there immediately, and draw together as large a force as possible, and employ it in harrassing them on their march, and in preventing their parties from being sent out after forage. You will advertise me of the movements of the enemy, and of the force you collect. It will be attended with many advantages to collect a force on the other side of the Catabaw. For this purpose you will detach three or four good officers to raise the Militia in that quarter; and to have them in readiness to be employed as ocasion may require. I shall write to General Sumter to pursue similar measures; and you will please to correspond with him on the subject, that the whole collective force may be employed to one point.
You must take the usual methods, pointed out by the Laws of the State for supplying your Men with provisions, forage, horses and all other matters necessary for furthering the operations; but if these should fail and the emergencies of service render more decisive measures necessary, you must impress, taking care that it is done by Officers, and that proper certificates are given for the things taken. You will be watchful and vigilant to guard against a surprise and have your men as much collected as possible; and in order to reduce matters to a greater certainty and more order it would be well to engage the men for some given time, that they shall not leave Camp without leave. Let the troops you collect be as lightly equiped as possible, that you may move with expedition to join this army, if necessary. If you act in conjunction with the North Carolinia Militia, and there is no officer of equal rank, you will assume the command, until a more perfect arrangment can be made.

Given at the Light Infantry Camp on the Yadkin at the Island Ford. Feb 3d 1781

N Greene

Autograph draft signed (MiU-C) 3 pp.