|Title||George Walton document set|
|Date||1779 June 29|
One Item-two leaf pamphlet with manuscript and engraving
Walton, George, 1749-1804
United States History Colonial period, ca. 1600-1775
|Scope & Content||
George Walton document set. One Item-two leaf pamphlet with manuscript letter and engraving.
The manuscript reads as follows:
"Sunbury, 29 June, 1779
On Sunday night last, lieutentants Dixon and Hennington, of the Continental Troops, in contempt of their parole, left this Garrison; & went (as is supposed) to a party of our troops, which were then in the neighborhood of [illegible]. As I was superior Officer of the Prisoners of War, this desertion was early reported to me yesterday morning; and in consequence of it, I communicated it to the Commanding Offices of the Garrison, and wrote, by a [illegible], to Colonel Baker, who, we were told, commanded the party, requesting him to send them back immediately: but the [illegible] returned without seeing Colonel Baker, or any of his party. I do myself the pleasure to enclose to you a copy of that letter. This morning I am requested by the commanding officer, to write to you upon the subject, which I do with [illegible] more satisfaction, that I am [illegible] such conduct will meet your utmoft abhorrence. Officers who behave thus repugnantly to the dictates & injunctions of honor, and the rules of rations, not only bring disgrace upon themselves, but upon the arms which they had engaged to brighten and support. They lay also a foundation for extraordinary sufferings for their fellow Captives; on account of which, in any judgment, no punishment on themselves can be to severe. For these reasons, therefore, Sir, and to deter others from the like shameful practice, I do request, and sincerely hope, that you will excuse them both to be safely conveyed to the Head-Quarters of the British Army in Georgia, without delay.
I am, Sir, very respectfully, Your moft obedient servant,
George Walton (1741–February 2, 1804) signed the United States Declaration of Independence as a representative of Georgia.
George Walton was born in Virginia. His parents died when he was a child, resulting in his adoption by an uncle with whom he entered apprenticeship as a carpenter. In 1769 he moved to Savannah, Georgia to study law, and was admitted to the bar in 1774. He became an advocate of the patriot cause and was elected Secretary of the Georgia provincial Congress, and became president of the Council of Safety. He was elected to the Continental Congress. He was commissioned a Colonel of the First Regiment of the Georgia Militia. He was injured in the Battle of Savannah and taken prisoner. He was freed through a prisoner exchange in 1779 and elected Governor of Georgia, but held the office only two months. He was a political ally of General Lachlan McIntosh and a foe of Button Gwinnett. He and Gwinnett's political battles resulted in his expulsion from office and indictment for various criminal activities. He returned to Congress in 1780-1781. He was censured for his role in a duel which resulted in Button Gwinnett's death. He became Chief Justice of Georgia, 1783-89, Governor of Georgia in 1789, and U.S. Senator in 1795.
He died in Augusta, Georgia. Walton County, east of Atlanta, is named for him.
This document set includes an engraving.