A Chronology of the

Appointments & Commands

of
Captain Antoni Selin
and His Association with
the Independent Corps of
Captain John Paul Schott,

Major Nicholas de Ottendorf and
Col. Charles Armand

and their Affiliated Units and Officers
 During the Revolutionary War.

 

A compilation of information with
annotations and observations

by

 

Jim W. Filipski

&

Steve Collward

 

 

 

 

 

 

Introduction

 

            In our research into the military career of Captain Antoni Selin a number of people stand out by association with him that help shape the time period of his service in the Continental Army. Some of the associations being positive and others negative, we try to piece them all together here by using only contemporary sources from the time he saw service in America.     

            In our attempt to document the company or companies commanded by Captain Antoni Selin throughout the American War of Independence we are faced with a complicated and at times, confusing amount of data that has survived over the years.

            We found that it was virtually impossible to document his commands without doing associated research of people that were directly affiliated with him during this time. Thus a good portion of the research has also to deal with Major Ottendorf, to whose Corps he was apparently first attached, followed by Charles Armand who was appointed commander of Ottendorf's Corps following the disappearance of Ottendorf. Later to be affiliated or under command of Armand during the founding and transition of Armand's own  Independent Corps of Cavalry and Chaseussers.

            Again this "chronology of events" represents our findings which have been taken primarily from contemporary documents, records and personal letters. We felt this was the only way to cut through some of the puzzling and at times contradictory information that has been presented by some of the previous researchers of the past.

            Captain Selin's affiliation with Captain John Paul Schott appears to be more complex than what previous documentation has found. From the new research it appears that Schott was recruiting and in command of his own Independent Company ( associated with the 16 additional regiment that George Washington was given the power to form) just before or during the formation of Ottendorf's Corp. Capt. Selin upon Ottendorff's Corps formation was placed in command of Company No. 2. Supposedly Schott was in command of Company No. 3 but the newest documentation seems to show that Schott, with his own Independent Company, was attached to Ottendorf's Corps later in April of 1777.

            In some of the existing records, we have found mistakes and some suppositions that can lead to errors for future researchers. The one most prominent error is that of

Fitzpatrick in the Varrick transcripts of the Letters of George Washington. In his notations there are constant references to Selin as belonging to Moses Hazen's 2nd Canadian Regiment even in transcripts whose dates are before his true attachment to Hazen's Regiment. He was with Hazen near the end of the Revolution, 1781 to 1784, but many times when Selin is mentioned earlier in those transcripts this notation is made, leading the uninitiated to believe that is where he had his command during the war. We also noted that some officers and men in Captain Selin's Company during the early war have these similar erroneous footnotes. This affiliation  with Hazen's Regiment occurred from 1781 to 1784  so the first 4 years of his service to the United States is ignored.  In the national archives there is a list of the soldiers that served with Captain Selin apparently during the attachment with Hazen. After reviewing this I feel that this was compiled at a later date after the war because this list shows the soldiers that were  attached to Selin during the entire war. This list is still a puzzle to me and could be the reason that it was taken for granted that Captain Selin was always with the 2nd Canadian Regt. If this be the case, then the mistakes were made because of limited research by earlier authors.                                

            Great care must be taken when researching documentation to weed out these latter day induced errors. Many texts which are considered noteworthy contain errors when additional new researchers probe deeper into first hand accounts.

 

           

            For instance; Boatner's "Encyclopedia of the American Revolution" for one, contains errors when it comes to Charles Armand; some of the sources appear flawed. His quoted text of Lasseray and Heitman appear to have errors or have been mistranslated after researching Armand's personal letters to Washington and others during this time period. Placing Armand with Pulaski's Legion in May of 1777 is incorrect.

            Those who are also interested in the Military careers of John Paul Schott as well as Charles Armand may also find this manuscript helpful. I also feel it will be a help for those researching some of the lesser known officers associated with these units. I feel comfortable knowing that what we present in this paper, is an accurate account of what was taking place in this time period. Of course there are some of our own personal comments ( based on the facts) that may or may not be fully correct. These are listed separately so they are not confused with the contemporary documentation.

            Have we found the answers? Well, some, but I feel the new research has opened new questions and new avenues of research possibilities. Sometimes a small piece of evidence can change a whole way of thinking.  I feel we will be updating this information from time to time.

                                                                                                            J.W.Filipski     Jan. 19, 2003

                                                                                                             (with revision November 16, 2007)

                                                                                                                       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Special Thanks

            We graciously offer a word of special thanks to: Steve Gilbert, Bob McDonald,

John K. Robertson, John Rees, Thaddeus Weaver and Joseph Lee Boyle for their assistance, comments and provide guidance in our research. They are without a doubt, some of the finest modern researchers of the American War of Independnce.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Preface

What we now know of Antoni Selin's military service in the American army during the
American War for Independence: 

 

            Antoni Selin was most likely the first officer to be recruited and commissioned in Ottendorf's Corps. Congress empowered Ottendorf to raise his Corps along with commissioning Antoni Selin as a Captain. Selin is to command a Company of 45 men of what could be concidered "American Jägers". It is quite possible that Ottendorf and Selin were friends or acquaintances  before the Corps was formed. Both Ottendorf and Selin petitioned Congress for money to raise Ottendorf's Corps. These funds were charged to Ottendorf's account. We have found no other mention of  any additional officers of this Corps requesting such. We feel Selin's Company was in Bound Brook, NJ by April 10th 1777, possibly because his Company of Ottendorf's Corps was fully recruited by then. He and his Company left Philadelphia on April 5th headed for Boundbook at the orders of General Washington. We know for the accounts of  the German Captain Johann Ewald, that by the 10th of April  1777 Ottendorf's Corps had arrived in Boundbrook. However Major Ottendorf with his Company of Light Infantry was still waiting in Philadelphia due to low numbers in his ranks as of April 24, 1777 There by orders of General Schyler, John Paul Schotts Independnt Company was joined to Ottendorf's Corps. Early in 1777 Washington had givin Schott the authorthy to raise soldiers for his own Independent Company as part of the "16 Additional Regiments" which Washington was empowered to raise by order of Congress.) Apparently when those companies gathered in Philadelphia in April of 1777 to be outfited and sent to the field, neither Ottendorf's own Company or Schott's Company was fully recruited. Since Major Ottendorf was to command a Corps of "Independent Companies" ( besides his own Company) Schott was joined to the Corps.

            By June 1777,  with the Corps in New Jersey, Ottendorf has disappeared and Charles Armand is given the command of Ottendorf's Corps.

            After the Battle of Short Hills, June 1777,  many of the Corps  has been killed, captured or missing. Schott's and Bauer's Companies seem to have received the worst. Schott has been taken prisoner. July 1777 shows many deserters being brought in from Ottendorf's Corps (Charles Armand commanding officer). It is quite possible after this,  Armand distances himself from much of this original Corps' "foot", concentrating on its mounted component for which he begins to recruit. Captain Selin it appears, commands what is now left of the "Foot" portion of  the "Late Ottendorf's Corps" in Armand's absences. This appears to be the case throughout the rest of 1777 and much of 1778.  Armand was recruiting heavily, especially in New England in the Spring and Summer of 1778 and appears to be absent from the "Foot" portion of the Corps.

            In August 1778, it was almost like Captain Selin has no idea of the status of Charles Armand, as well as Ottendorf , when he filed a report on the officers of the Corps, which he was now commanding. Schott reappears  on the scene in the late Fall of 1778 and the joint command of Capts. Selin & Schott begins. So does the controversy of point of rank between them and Charles Armand's newly commissioned officers. It appears that some major quarrels arise. They are split from Armand's Corps. Selin and Schott are sent to the Minisink region of New York along with Armand's and Pulaski's Corps.

            Selin and Schott now spend the winter of 1778-79 in this region commanding small frontier forts. They remain there until they are ordered to the Wyoming Valley in the Spring of 1779 to prepare for the Sullivan-Clinton Campaign.General Washington sends Captain Schott to Philadelphia for supplies for the Corps while Captain Selin marches the Corps into Wyoming. In June of 1779 Captain Selin is commanding a detachment who's job is to bring boats & supplies up the Susquehanna to Wyoming. We feel that Captain Schott leaves the Sullivan campaign sometime early into the march and Captain Selin is in command of "Schott's Corps"(It is quite possible that Schott, after leaving the campaign possibly due to illness or injury returns to Wyoming where he becomes familiar with Naomi Sill whom he marries the following year). At this point we see references to "Captain Selin's Independent Rifle Company.            Captain Selin also commanded a group of "pioneers" during the expedition that were somewhat instrumental in the discovery of the ambush that was being laid at Newtown, NY. These pioneers were working with the cover of the riflemen on the front lines.

           

 

After the end of this campaign they return and take up posts in Wyoming to help protect this frontier settlement.  Apparently a dispute in rank erupts again.This time it is  between Captain's Selin and Schott.

            In 1781 Captain Selin and his men are reassigned to Moses Hazen's 2nd Canadian Regiment and stays until the end of hostilities. He is discharged with the rank of  Major.

           

            The information that is presented here is documented and in a chronological form and we have included references or reference footnotes to back up the materials. We have also interjected some questions, opinions and comments along the way which at the time we felt necessary. The names of the people of concern have varied spellings which is common during the time period and most times we continue it's use for historical accuracy. There are notable misspellings to be found in the original quotes, which we did not correct to preserve their validity.

 

 

Annotation Notes: 

            All black text body copy signifies stated facts, quotes and contemporary materials. In the situation in which the original text was unable to be transcribed  we inserted a blank space. If the text was difficult to transcribe or questionable we inserted the "closest approximation followed by a ? mark.

 

Red text signifies links to associated footnotes and references.

 

Authors' comments, questions, speculations, observations and opinions appear in italic brown text.

 

Original "Fitzpatrick" notation appears in blue within the main text.

 

Common Abbreviations used:

(GWP)............George Washington Papers - Letters of George Washington, at the Library of Congress Electronic Digital Archives

 

To address any comments to the authors, they may be reached by e-mail
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This work is also available in Adobe Acrobat PDF format:Click Here to download

 

 

 

1776

 

            On September  6, 1776 in Congress  we find:

"The Board of War brought in a report, which was taken into consideration; Whereupon,

Resolved , That John Paul Schott , who is well recommended as an experienced officer, be appointed a captain in the continental army, with directions to raise a company as soon as possible; but, that as he may be usefully employed immediately, that he be forthwith sent to General Washington at New York, and that one month's pay be advanced to him."1

 

            November  8, 1776 Ottendorf is appointed.

 In Congress;

"Resolved , That Mynheer N. D. Ottendorf  be appointed a brevet captain in the service of the United States."

The next day in Congress we read:

"Resolved , That two months' pay be advanced to Captain Ottendorf ; and that he be ordered to repair to head quarters, near White Plains, and put himself under the command of General Washington."2

 

            On December  5, 1776 Congress Resolves  Ottendorf  to form the Independent Companies of the Corps which he will head. In Congress; "Resolved , That Captain Ottendorf  be directed to raise an independent company, to be composed of 150 privates, serjeants and corporals included:

That it be divided as follows:

The first company of 60 men, light infantry, one captain and two lieutenants; two companies of hunters, 45 privates each, to be commanded each by a captain and two lieutenants:

That Captain Ottendorf have the rank of major, that he be captain of the light infantry company, and command the whole.

That an adjutant be appointed for this corps, who is to act as quarter master and pay master, with the rank of  lieutenant, and pay of other adjutants."3 (Ottendorf is elevated to a rank of Major of the Corps & acts as Captain of the light infantry company. The term " hunters" or jaegers would be a common term for these European commanders familiar with the use of rifles.
The first year of Selin's Company's deployment seems to be more of that associated to the German Jager style then of the typical American rifleman )

 

            On December 10, 1776  Continental Congress resolved   that: "Antonie Seelim (Selin)  be  appointed a captain of a riffle (rifle) Company in the Corps commanded by Major Ottendorf." 4  (Captain Selin is appointed by Congress. At this point we could not find any documentation stating that Schott was appointed as an officer in this Corps since he wasalready  appointed by George Washington to raise his own Independent Company as part of the 16 Addtional Regiments . J.W.F. )

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 The Commission of Antoni Selin

December 10, 1776

 

 

 

 

 

 

I n   C O N G R E S S

 

     The DELEGATES of the UNITED STATES of New-Hamphire, Massachusetts-Bay, Rhode-Island, Connecticut, New-York, Pennsylvania, Deleware, Maryland, Virginia, North-Carolina, South- Carolina, and Georgia, TO

                                                            Antonie Selim, Esquire

 

     We, reposing special Trust and Confidence in your Patriotism, Valour, and Fidelity, DO, by these presents, constitute and appoint you to be Captain of the Company commanded by Major Ottendorff 

 in the Army of the United States, raised for the Defence of American Liberty, and for repelling every hostile invasion thereof.  You are therefore carefully and diligently to discharge the duty of Captain.... by doing and performing all manner of Things thereunto belonging.  And we do strictly charge and require all Officers and Soldiers under your Command, to be obedient to your orders as Captain, And you are to observe and follow such Orders and Directions from Time to Time, as you shall receive from this or a future Congress of the United States, or Committee of Congress, for that purpose appointed, or Commander in Chief for the Time being of the Army of the United States, or any other your superior Officer, according to the Rules and Discipline of War, In Pursuance of the Trust reposed in you.

 

     This Commission to continue in Force until revoked by this or future Congress.

 

     Dated at Philadelphia December 10th, 1776

                                                                                     By Order of the Congress,

 

                                                                                                John Hancock,  President

 

     Attest. Chas. Thomson, Secy.      

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1777

 

      January 31, 1777 Washington writes to Capt. Schott with the following order:  "Sir: You have herewith your recruiting Instructions, and Warrant to draw Money to begin with.  You have Liberty to Nominate your Subaltern Officers, in doing which you cannot be too particular as your own Reputations and the good of the Service in a great measure depend upon this Choice, should it happen that upon seeing them I think them Incapable of filing the Posts to which they are nominat'd with honour, I shall not think myself bound to confirm your Choice.  Fix upon some place contiguous to where you expect to raise the greatest number of men for your Rendezvous, and let me know from time to time how you proceed and when there is a probability of your Company being Complete.  I need not mention the necessity there is of putting your Men under Training duty as fast as they are rais'd, by which they will be capable of rendering immediate Service when call'd into the Field.  Wishing you Success I am etc." 1 (Schott was selected by Washington to command a small independent company as part of the authority given to him by Congress to raise add'l battalions)

By the 1st of April of 1777 Selin's Company is complete.

The company along with it's fifers and drummers is now ready for deployment. Which would make it the first company of Ottendorff's to be in the field. Selin has Company #2 of the Corps and Schott should have Company #3 (but at this time he still is commanding a small independent company- he joins Ottendorff late in April-not by his choice)   In a letter to George Washington on March 24, 1777, Schott writes to ask him for money, arms and plankits              ( blankets?) .  He also states that he has 25 men to pay and "if I gets the Plankits I will put them in the barracks at Lancaster". (At this time Schott is in Lancaster with only 25 men that he has recruited for his company.)  In an entry of the  Journals of the Continental Congress of May 3, 1777 there states "Resolved , That Christian Mankey receive a commission as first lieutenant, and George Shoffner a commission as a second lieutenant, in Captain John Paul Schott's independent company; and that the said commissions bear date the 4th February last, the time they were appointed to act by the captain, in consequence of orders from General Washington." And, "Resolved , That Christian Frolock be appointed a second lieutenant in Captain Selim's company, of Major Ottendorf's corps." (At this time Schott is not affiliated  with Ottendorf's Corps and is acting under the orders of Washington at the command of his own Independent Company whereas Captain Selin Company is a part of Ottendorff's ) 
 ( also see notes 2,3,4 & 5)

            February 14, 1777 In Congress: "Resolved, That 500 dollars be advanced to Captain Antoine Selin, towards raising Major Ottendorf's corps, and  that the same  charged to the account of the said Major Ottendorf." 6

 

            February 22, 1777  In Congress: "Resolved, That Jost Triesback be appointed a captain, and Charles Merckle a lieutenant, in Major Ottendorff's corps." 7

 

            March 19, 1777 "That John Schrop be appointed second lieutenant, and Bartholomew Van Heer, adjutant, in the corps commanded by Major Ottendorf." 8

 

            April 4, 1777  From George Washington's General Orders:  "The detachments, commanded by Capts. O'Hara, Bicker, Talbot and Selin, to hold themselves in readiness (with two days provision) to march tomorrow morning. They will receive their orders from Major Genl. St. Clair. 9 (This would be the first deployment of Selin's Company that we have located. It is very probable that it was the first Company of Ottendorf's to be fully recruited since Ottendorf continues to recruit through May of 1777)

 

            April 9,1777  "That Jacob Bauer be appointed a captain and Lawerence Meyer a first Lieutenant, in the corps commanded by Major Ottendorf."10  

 

 

            According to Captain Johann Ewald's Journal,  by April 10th 1777  "We learned that a French major, Mr. von Ottendorff had arrived with a newly organized corps consisting of Germans and Frenchmen for the reinforcement of the post at Bound Brook." " On April 11th this hero tried his luck against us. He attacked my post at daybreak, and I was forced to withdraw across a small ravine. At ten o'clock in the morning he came again, but since Captain Wreden came to my aid at once, he was driven back with losses and we escorted him up to the enemy outposts. But since he had firmly resolved to dislodge me today, he reappeared for the third time at three o'clock in the afternoon." Ewald continues his encouters with Ottendorff's Corps in the area of Bound Brook and seems to get the upper hand: " Since the 18th of April, Mr. von  Ottendorff had prowled about at night in the ravines across the river and had fired on our posts, through which several sentries werre killed and wounded.  The enemy had also hidden several times in the barn of the preacher across the river and fired on my quarters through holes cut in the barn walls.

            Therefore I decided to draw these guests into an ambuscade.  On the 20th., several hours before daybreak, I put an amusette behind a false hedge which I had fashioned from bushes, placing it so that the barn could be pierced easily.  I sent Lieutenant Trautvetter with twelve jagers to a small hollow on this side of the river across from the parsonage, with orders to keep hidden until the Americans were dislodged from the barn by the fire of the amusette.  Then they were to rise and accompany the piece with sharp rifle fire.  All went well.  As soon as day broke, the riflemen began their harassing with their long rifles.  After the third cannon shot, the barn became silent and the enemy left it, whereupon he fell into the jagers' fire.  Since the road ran up along the river, which was not over a hundred paces wide, the jagers had the best possible range, and every jager killed or wounded his man.

            After several hours an officer with a trumpeter appeared and requested permission to take away the dead and severely wounded on a wagon.  I permitted this and asked the officer if he would not visit us again soon.   He shook his head, and they took away their dead and wounded on two wagons.  There were five dead and two badly wounded. (Capt. Johann Ewald, "Diary of the American War" A Hessian Journal, translated and edited by Joseph P. Tustin, Yale Univ. Press)

            (This is most likely Captain Selin instead of Ottendorf for a few reasons; Captain Selin's Company was deployed on April 5 based on the General Orders of the previous entry above. He was Swiss, fluent in German and the French Languages.  All his personal correspondence in our archives is written in French. It also appears that the engagements were of "foot" troops. Selin's Company was recruited as" hunters" in a word American Jaegers. In these engagements they  were opposing similar stlye troops recruited by the British from Germany Hessians Jaegers and being deployed in similar fashion.

  Ottendorf  was a Prussian (we do not know what languages he spoke) however during this period of time in he was in Philadelphia  waiting for more recruits to fill  his ranks  which incudes the attachment of Captain John Paul Schott's Independent Company as the entry for April 24th 1777 will show.   J.W.F.)

           

 

 

 

                        April 17, 1777 George Washington forms a list of Officer Apointments for sixteen Additional Battalions: Captain John Paul Schott is on this list ( appointment by Washington) 11

           

            On April 24, 1777  Major Ottendorf is in Philadelphia awaiting more recruits to fill the rest of his Company. Captain Schott with his Independent Company is also there. Captain Schott's Company is now attached to Ottendorf's Corps by orders of General Schuyler. A set of two returns now residing in the New Your State Library, show the numbers of men both in town and in the camp, for Ottendorf Independent Company and also for Schott's Independent Company with the notation that Schott's Company was joined to Ottendorf's. 12 (NYSL, Documents 914-915)

 

            April 29, 1777

"Resolved, That one thousand dollars be advanced to Major Ottendorf, for recruiting his corps of rangers; and that he be directed, forthwith, to produce a certificate from the commissary general of musters, or deputy muster master general in this department, of the number of soldiers inlisted into his respective companies." Also "Resolved, That Baron Ernst Siegsmond be appointed first lieutenant, and John Conrad Latour, second lieutenant, in the corps commanded by Major Ottendorff"13

 

            On May 10, 1777  In the Continental Congress we find;

"That there should be advanced to Major Ottendorf, for the use of his corps, the sum of 500 dollars; he to be accountable:" Also "Resolved, That Mons. Armand have a commission, with the rank and pay of a major or colonel, and that he be directed to repair to General Washington." 14

           

            May 19th 1777 Washington favors Armand to form a Partisan corps;  If he couldn't fill the Corps he was to be able to recruit from existing Regiments all French Officers that would want to serve under him.15

 

            June 11th 1777 Armand is "ordered" to take command of  Ottendorff's Corps.

            In a letter Washington  writes to Armand  June  11, 1777  "Sir: You are forthwith to take upon you the command of the Corps heretofore under Major Ottendorf and to do all the duties thereof as commanding Officer, according to the rules and regulations established for the government of the Continental Army and according to the usages of War. You will therefore endeavour, by attentive observation and inquiry, to make yourself acquainted with every kind of duty practiced in the Army, with the resolutions of Congress, the Articles of War, and all general orders and conform punctually to them. You are permitted to use your endeavours to complete your Corps to a full Regiment; the necessary Officers will be appointed, in proportion to the progress you make and the number of Men you collect. For the present you are to be under the immediate command of Major General Lincoln and to obey all his orders." 16

( Somewhere in the period of mid May to mid June 1777 Ottendorf  leaves and /or deserts  and  goes back to Europe) 

(At this point  it is not evident if Armand has a group prior to this command.  It seems as if this is a new command and was called the "late  Ottendorf's Corps" and / or after Armand added additional companies to it,  it became "Armand's Partisan Corps" or what could be called the "Old Armands Corps" but not Armand's Legion which was not formed until later in 1780).

 

"The only known detailed map of the Battle of Short Hills by Liet, Friedrich von Wagenheim of the Hessian Jaeger Corps, a German with French training in Cartography, Showing the "Avante Garde des Riflemen d'Ottendorff on two hills straddling the road a short distance in advance of the main Corps du Gen'l  Stirling" Wagenhiem " Plan de l'Affaire de Westfield, 1777 . Lib of Cong Card # G 3813.E7S3 1777.W3 Faden 75.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Battle of Short Hills

(The following are excerpts from Frederic C. Detwiller's "War in the Countryside, the Battle and Plunder of the Short Hills, New Jersey, June 1777." They are included here because of the number of  first hand accounts cited. June 26th, 1777)

 

The Fight for the American Cannon

 

            Much of the conflict  centered around the American cannon since, "in the course of the battle four field pieces were taken from Lord Sterling, again retaken, and finally lost."1

One observer wrote later from Washington's camp at Middlebrook describing how one of these cannons was subsequently saved from falling into enemy hands:"The fire growing hot and our men beginning to retreat, a British officer singly rode up to a cannon that was playing on the enemy, and with his pistols and hangar forced every man from it, then seeing Lord Sterling, he cried 'Come here you damn rebel, and I will do for you!' Lord Sterling answered him by directing the fire of four marksmen upon him which presently silenced the hardy fool....Our men recovered the field piece which their want of small arms obliged them to abandon."2

            According to the subsequent news report, the British officer who was mortally wounded in the exchange of words and fire at the cannon "was the honorable Mister John Finch, son of Earl of Wichelson, who came out this spring as a volunteer.  After he fell, his horse came over and was taken by our army." 3

Muenchausen adds that "General Lord Sterling, who was in command, had his horse shot, and General Maxwell was almost captured by the Hessian Grenadiers missing him only by  a hair's breadth."4

            Apparently according to John Montresor, "Lord Chewton, aide de camp to Lord Cornwallis had his horse shot under him" as well.5

Meunchausen's account continues: "They finally fired grape-shot at von Minnigerode's battallion, but after that they ran away into the woods."6

Colonel Lewis Willis wrote to Mr. Charles Yates in Fredericksburg, Virginia, regarding this last desperate clash  saying "Several declare that at one discharge of our cannon with cannisters shot, we thereby killed six men upon the spot."7

            Future cavalry leader Colonel Charles Armand-Tuffin, Marquis de la Rouerie, the Frenchman in command of Ottendorff's Corps and probably a mounted component of it, in particular seems to have had a direct role in the contest for the American cannon.  He  reports he had a certificate of commendation "from Lord Sterling for my conduct at the battle of short hills in the jersey--where out of 80 men, 32 were killed & taken in the action & after the corps were ordered to defend a piece of cannon which happily,  though making the rear guard in the retreat, I saved from the enemy--thus as I  may remember were the expressions of  Lord Sterling--the loss of men and the deffence of the peace of canon are the fact."8

 

The Americans' Retreat

            The flanking movement by Minnigerode's Hessian Grenadiers on the right against the American left, had produced its desired effect.  George Ewing of Maxwell's Brigade states that these men "were nearly surrounded before we were aware....We were obliged to retreat which we did in good order."9

William Grant, the Virginia rifleman tells of the ultimate fate of the majority of Ottendorff's Corps of Volunteers: "They drew up immediately in order to defend their field pieces and cover our retreat, and in less than an hour and a half were entirely cut off; scarce sixty of them returned safe out of the field; those who did escape were so scattered over the country that a great number of them could not rejoin the Army for five or six days."10

            André reports that "a troop of Light Dragoons pursued the fugitives and took 30  prisoners, killing or wounding several more."11

Johann Carl Buttner of Ottendorff's Corps gives his views of events toward the end of the battle: "When we saw that we were outnumbered and resistance was hopeless, we abandoned our cannon and baggage and fled down the other side of the hill.  Many threw away their rifles and knapsacks, and ran like hares into the forest.  I fell into a ditch and my comrades, leaving me for dead, jumped over me.  As the cannon balls and rifle bullets were falling all around me and I was afraid of being run through by the enemy that were pursuing us, I crawled on my hands and knees into some thick undergrowth nearby, and lay there till I could no longer hear any firing."12

            A British observer gives a detailed description of the scene of battle: "When the engagement began, I got upon a little hillock to see better, but an honest highlander advised me to retire into a small breastwork just by, without which I  had a mind to stick up myself as a mark for the rebels to shoot at.  I thought proper to take his advice and retired to the place he directed me to, where I had a very good view of the proceedings.  I observed a party of our  men going through   a rye field, I suppose with an intent to get into the rear of the rebels and by that means surround them, but they were met as soon as they got out of the field by about the same number of rebels.  When they were about a hundred yards from each other both parties fired, but I did not observe any fall.  They still advanced to the distance of forty yards or less, and fired again; I saw a good number of them fall on both sides.  Our people then rushed upon them with their bayonets and the others took to their heels.  I heard one of them call out 'Murder!' lustily. This is laughable if the consequence was not so serious. A fresh party immediately fired upon our people, but were dispersed and pursued into the woods....A brisk fire then begain from six field pieces the rebels had secreted in the woods, which did some mischief to our men. The engagement lasted about thirty-five minutes.  Our people took the field pieces....

            "I went to the place where I saw the two parties fire upon each other first, before the wounded were removed, but I  never before saw such a shocking scene:  some dead, others dying, death in different shapes; some of the wounded making the most pitiful lamentations, others that were of different parties cursing each other as the author of their misfortunes.  One old veteran I observed (that was shot through both legs and not able to walk), was cooly and deliberately loading his piece and cleaning it from blood. I was surprised at the sight and asked him his reasons for it.  He with a look of contempt, said, 'To be ready in case any of the Yankees come that way again."13

 

 

 

 

 

            On June 26th 1777  Captain Schott is taken prisoner in the battle of Short Hills, at Woodbridge, NJ.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            From the Pennsylvania Archives we find the following;

OTTENDORFF'S CORPS, PENNSYLVANIA

Captain Anthony Selin's Company, May and June 1777

A PAY ROLL

Of Captain Antony Selins Company of the Independent Corps Commanded by Major Ottendorff Esqr due from the first of

May 1777 to June the first 1777.

(This is the earliest listing of men in Co.#2, Captain Selin's Company, that we have located to date. Although it is a Payroll for May-June of 1777, research that we have done points to a date of some time in the Summer of 1777 (most likely July orAugust 1777 *) This is based on the fact that there is the signature of Col. Charles Armand, who took command of Ottendorff's Corps on June 11th 1777, and the countersignature of Richard Humpton** at that point in charge of the 2nd Brigade -Genl. Lincoln's Division ( Lincoln had been transferred north while his Division remained in the Philadelphia area to become attached to General Stephen's then to General Wayne). Also the names on the list show men that we feel were in Co. # 1 Dreisbach's, Co.# 4 Bauer's as well as Ottendorff's own Company. This may reflect recent disorganization from the damage to the ranks during the engagements of Short Hills and Boundbrook, NJ in June of 1777.)

            *George Washington's General Orders August 6th 1777 "The pay Abstracts of every regiment and corps in the army, for the month of July, and any time preceding that month, for which they have not been made out, are to be completed and delivered to the Pay Master General by Monday next. The officers commanding regiments and corps will be answerable for the execution of this order: And every officer, who does not deliver in his abstracts, punctually by the time above assigned, may depend on being arrested, and tried for disobedience of orders; unless there are reasons, which may render it impracticable, to any to make out and deliver their abstracts by that time"

            **General Washington's General Orders July 3, 1777 "Col. Humpton will take the command of the division commanded by General Lincoln."(So at this point in time it may be possible that Selin was attached to Gen'l Lincoln's Old Division which is being commanded by Humpton... he is in the Jerseys and on way to the Philadelphia Campaigns)

 

            July 4, 1777

George Washington in his General Orders at Head Quarters, Morristown, writes;

            "The Commander in Chief approves the following sentences of a General Court Martial, held the 2nd. Inst., whereof Colonel Stewart was president, and orders them to be put in execution forthwith--viz:

George Deal of Col Armand's Independent Corps, charged with "Desertion" found guilty, and sentenced to receive 39 lashes.

            Charles Grifinger of Col Armand's Independent Corps, charged with deserting from that corps, and likewise with having deserted from the 11th. Pennsylv. regt., found guilty, and sentenced to receive 100 lashes on his bare back, for deserting from Col Armand's Independent Corps, and also to receive 50 lashes for deserting from the 11th. Pennsylv. regiment.

            John Gunsell of Col Armand's Independent Corps, charged with "Desertion," found guilty, and sentenced to receive 39 lashes on his bare back.

David Klein of Col Armand's Independent Corps, charged with "Desertion," pleaded guilty, and was sentenced to receive 39 lashes.

Wilhelm Dorn of Col Armand's Independent Corps, charged with "Desertion," pleaded guilty, and was sentenced to receive 39 lashes." 17

(These desertions took place mostly during or right after the June engagements in New Jersey {Short Hills et al} which was Armand's first Battle in the American War)

            July 10, 1777 Acting on an application to the Board Of War by Charles Armand, Richard Peters writes to George Washinton:  War Office July 10th, 1777

            "Sir, Col. D'Armand of the Corps late Ottendorff's has appplied to the Board for forty Musketts & ten Rifles to supply the like Number lost by the Soldiers.  The Board_________

wrong to comply with this requisition on the Application being made to them in the first Instance without passing under your Excellency's notice who must be the best acquainted with the Propriety & Neccesity of the Application.  Amid  necessaries lost in acutal service should beyond a doubt be  replaced; but if any neglect has happened on the Part of the Officers & the Soldiers have sold or wantonly lost their  arms or clothes & the officer has taken no Pains to recover them or enquire into the Causes of their Loss it ought to

fall upon the captain of the Companies ( or other officer in fault) & be deducted out of their Pay. Ottendorff's Corps went out of this City at least as well equipped as any in the Army & it is extraordinary that out of about one hundred men so many as fifty should want but everything.  The Commisary is ordered to box up & send the fifty Arms to Camp & gives Directions to the officer who recieves them there not to deliver them without your Permission which they make no Doubt you will grant if the measure be all right & proper but if not you will be pleased to apply the Arms elsewhere?  There is a Deficiency of Clothing to a great Amount also applied for which induces a Belief that the soldiers have sold to the Suttlers both Arms & Clothes. I have the Honour to be with the greatest Respect your very obed' Servt Richard Peters  Secy 18

           

            July 16, 1777 George Washington writes the Continental Congress War Board

from Camp near the Clove,

"Sir: I am this moment favor'd with yours of the 10th Inst.51 As I am an utter Stranger to any want of Arms in Colonel Armand's Corps, I am pleased that you have fallen upon so judicious a mode of supplying him, should it appear, upon inquiry, that he wants so many, which at present I can scarcely beleive; however, after proper examination, the necessary Steps shall be taken respecting it.

            Should Arms be granted, upon every application from Commanders of Corps or Regiments in service, all that could be imported would fall exceedingly short of supplying the Army, as the most trivial disorder or wanton negligence would (in general) be the cause of requesting such supply. Instances of the Soldiers selling their Cloathes or Arms to Sutlers, have not as yet come under my Notice; should they in future, I shall fall upon the most effectual Method to prevent a Repetition of them" 19

[Note 51: This letter. dated July 10, 1777, is in theWashington Papers. The Board of War suspected carelessness in the need of these arms for Armand's Corps and, while complying with the requisition, ordered the officer who received them not to deliver them until he obtained Washington's approval. If Washington disapproved, the arms (50 stands) could be issued wherever the Commander in Chief thought proper.]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            August 7, 1777, General Orders  George Washinton mentions some trouble that Captain Dreisback has got himself into; (Dreisback was Captain of Company #1 Ottendorf's Corps now, Armand's Corps)

Head Quarters, Roxboro, August 7, 1777.

            "Capt. Friesback of Col. Armand's corps, charged 1st. with "Absenting himself without leave; 2nd. When being ordered to join his company when under arms, answer'd, he had time enough, and declined doing it; 3rd. When being put under arrest, made use of bad language, and treated his Colonel in a manner unbecoming an officer; 4th. When the corps was ordered to march into Amboy, he uttered discontent loudly before the soldiers, and wanted to know why they were returning to Amboy." Acquitted of the first, and found guilty of the second, third and fourth charges, and sentenced to be reprimanded in General orders, and to ask pardon of Col Armand in the presence of the officers of his corps.

            The Commander in Chief wishes all officers to be impressed with this truth, that nothing is more essential in military service than an exact subordination, and ready obedience to the commands of superior officers; that it is this which gives life and vigour to an army: that a contrary conduct must clog and impede every movement, and excite a spirit of discontent, disobedience and licentiousness among the troops; that in this view, the conduct of Capt. Friesback must be deemed highly criminal, and of a very dangerous tendency." 20

 

            August 20, 1777 , George Washington's General Orders

The order, by which Col. Armand's Corps was annexed to Genl. Conways brigade is countermanded. 21(We still have not been able to  find the orders to annex.)

           

            September 1, 1777

George Washington to William Maxwell

Head Qurs., Wilmington, September 1, 1777.

"Colo. Armand has complained to me of some Insults, offered him by a Lieutenant Colonel of Horse, whose name he does not mention, it will be easy for him to name the Gentleman to you, and you will order a Court of Inquiry upon the matter." 22

          September 2, 1777

George Washington to William Maxwell-Head Qurs., Wilmington, September 2, 1777.

            "Sir: I have your two favours of this date.

In consequence of the remonstrance from the Inhabitants near Elk, I have commanded Armand's Corps to repair immediately to this place. If any of the people who have been injured can point out the particular Persons, either Officers or Soldiers, they shall be made Examples of." 23

 

            September 2, 1777

George Washington to Charles Armand-Tuffin, Marquis de la Rouerie,

Head Qurs., Wilmington, September 2, 1777.

 

"Sir: I have a complaint lodged against your Corps by a number of the reputable Inhabitants in the Neighbourhood of Elk.

As I find that your men cannot be restrained from committing Violences while in the Country, I desire you will immediately march them to this Town."24

 

            September 4, 1777 A memorial from Captain Jacob Bower, and of Charles Seitz, an adjutant in Major Ottendorf's corps, were read, desiring leave to resign their commissions.25

 

1778   

 

            March 23, 1778

George Washington- General Orders

Head Quarters, V. Forge, Monday, March 23, 1778.

 

"At a General Court Martial whereof Colonel Swift was President (March 16th. 1778.) Serjeant John Henry Leiders of the late Armand's Corps, tried for wounding with his sword one Henry Trautcher found guilty of a breach of Article 5th. Section 18th. of the Articles of War, but in consideration of some alleviating circumstances only sentenced to be reprimanded by the officer commanding the Corps he belongs to." 1

            March 25, 1778

George Washington to Charles Armand-Tuffin, Marquis de la Rouerie

Head Quarters, Valley Forge, March 25, 1778.

 

"Sir: I yesterday received your letter from York Town. You must have misunderstood me, if you thought I gave you permission to raise a new and seperate Corps. I told you I had no power to grant such a request; but that if you could obtain permission from Congress [or of the Comee. of Congress in Camp] I should have no objection [to the measure and to your Inlisting Prisoners.] I am certain I never gave you any encouragement to inlist deserters, because I had ever found them of the greatest injury to the Service, by debauching our own Men and had therefore given positive orders to all recruiting Officers, not to inlist them upon any terms. The Congress have since made an express Resolve against it, and also against inlisting prisoners.

As you say your two Lieutenants were promised the Rank of Captains by the Marquis de la Fayette, I cannot do any thing in that matter until I have seen the Marquis who is expected from Albany shortly. When the Committee of Congress found that the Corps formerly commanded by you, were reduced below 50 Men, they determined to reduce it and to throw the Men into some Regiment.

 

I hope you will understand me clearly, [when I again assure you, that I have no powers to authorize the raising of New Corps] and as you are upon the spot, you will have a good opportunity of making application to the Congress for such a command as you seem desirous of having." 2

 

            March 27, 1778

George Washington to Alexander McDougall,

Head Quarters, Valley Forge, March 27, 1778.

"Dear Sir: I opened the inclosed to take out the Letter for the commanding Officer at Albany, having an opportunity of sending it immediately there by Colo. Armand." 3                        

 

            May 17th., 1778, At a Board of War,

Present, Colo. Pickering, Mr. Peters, Mr. Duer.

"That Colo. Armand, Marquis de la Rouerie, at present commanding the Independent Corps, formerly raised by Major Ottendorf, be authorized to recruit for the purpose of compleating the said Corps, Deserters from theEnemy's foreign Troops, French Men, and others not owing Allegiance to the King of Great Britain, upon the same Terms as other Troops raised on the Continental Establishment for three Years or during the War.That the said Corps be distinguished by the Name of The Free and Independent Chasseurs.

That it consist of Three Companies, formed and Commanded as follows, vizt.:

Each company to consist of one Captain, 1 Captn. Lieut., 2 Lieuts., 8 Sergeants, 8 Corporals, 2 Drummers, 128 Privates.Regimentary Officers, 1 Colo., 1 Major, 1 Regimental Standard Bearer, or Ensign Major, with the Rank and Pay of Lieut.

So that the whole will be composed as follows, viz:

*          One Colonel                          *          24 Sergeants                                                             

*          1 Major                                  *          24 Corporals                                                

*          3 Captains                             *          6 Drummers or horn sounders                            

*          3 Capt. Lieuts                        *          384 Privates                                      

*          6 Lieuts                                  *          438 Non-Comd. and Privates                               

*          1 Ensign Major

*          14 Commn. Officers

 

That Genl. Washington be authorized to appoint as Officers to the said Corps, such Officers of Merit as are at present in it, and such other foreign Officers of Merit as at present hold Commissions, and who are not already and cannot be annexed to other Corps, on the propose arrangement of the army.

            That this Corps when raised shall act in concert with Genl. Pulaski's Legion in such manner as Genl. Washington shall deem best

            That if any French, or other Foreigners (not Deserters from the Enemy) shall Enlist in the said Corps, the State in which such Troops shall so enlist shall be credited in their Continental Quota for such Recruits as they shall think proper to allow the State Bounty in addition to that allowed by the United States.

            And whereas, Congress have received Information that several Foreign Deserters from the Enemy's Troops and Prisoners of War have been enlisted in the Regiments rais'd by the Respective States, contrary to the Resolutions of Congress, but injurious to the interests of these States.

            Resolved, That Genl. Washington be directed to order Returns to be made from the Regiments of such Deserters and Prisoners of War; and that they be turn'd over to such Companies of Genl. Pulaski's Legion, or of the Free and Independent Chasseurs as they shall prefer.

That the sum of Dollars be advanced by the Treasury to the Order of the Board of War to be by the said Board paid from Time to Time to Colo Armand or his order for the purpose of recruiting the said corps.By order of the Board.Tim. Pickering, junr

            That none of the said Foreign Officers, to be appointed in the said corps, shall receive any higher pay than what is annexed to the Commands they may respectively be appointed to, by Virtue of any Brevet Commission which may have been granted by the Resolutions of Congress of the 2d February last

Resolved, That the independent corps raised by Colonel Armand, in consequence of General Washington's permission, be taken into continental pay; the pay to commence from the time of the respective inlistments of the non-commissioned officers and privates engaged in the same:

            That General Washington be authorized to officer this corps with such foreign and other officers of merit as at present hold commissions, and who are not already and cannot be annexed to other corps on the proposed arrangement of the army: That if any of the states shall think proper to allow to the non-commissionedofficers and privates, who have or shall inlist in Colonel Armand's corps, the bounty allowed by them respectively, in addition to the continental bounty, the men so engaged shall be credited as part of the quota of the State who shall allow the additional bounty:That the sum of five thousand dollars be paid to the Board of War, to be by them advanced to Colonel Armand, towards paying the continental bounty and recruiting charges of the said corps; for which sum, Colonel Armand is to be accountable." 4

 

            May 28, 1778

George Washington- General Orders

Head Quarters, V. Forge, Thursday, May 28, 1778.

 

*ARRANGEMENT OF ARMY AND ROUTE OF

MARCH TO THE NORTH RIVER93

[Note 93: Washington  endorsed this, at some later date: "Note--this March was changed by the Enemys March through New Jersey."]

 

"The Detachment under Colo. Jackson to March into Philadelphia and receive orders from General Arnold who will comd. there.

 

Vanscoicks Regiment to replace the 8th. Pensyla. in the 2d. Pensa. Brigade.

The Seed. State Regimt. of Virginia to replace the 13th. Virga. Regt. in Muhlenbergs Brig.

The Parke of Artillery to be divided among the several divisions above, equally and March with them.

 

ARMAND'S CORPS.

 

The first and Second division to move the Morning after Intelligence is received of the Enemys evacuation of the City. The third and fourth divisions the Morning next following; and the fifth division the Morning after.

 

Every days March to begin at four o'clock in the Morning at farthest.

1st. 3d. and 5th. Divisions by Coryells Ferry and through Smiths Clove.

2d. Division by Sherards Ferry and Sussex Court House.

Fourth division by Easton and Sussex Ct. Ho."

 

            A June 1778 muster rolls show "Selin's Corps" -with no mention of Schott

 ( he is a prisoner) ( The key word here we believe is "Corps" as opposed to term"Schott's Company" as used later in Oct,1778. This leads one to believe that the use of Corps here could mean a combination of Companies. This combining of Companies was most likely  due to the capture of Schott and breaking up and reforming of the original companies of what was left of Ottendorff /Armand's Old Corps)

 

            July 3, 1778

George Washington to Marquis de Lafayette

Head Quarters, Brunswick, July 3, 1778.

            "Dear Marquis: I have received your letter on the subject of the corps raising by Col Armand.

            You are sensible that it rests solely with Congress to determine the existence of a new corps and decide in an affair of this nature; If they should think proper to give their sanction to Col. Armand in the business he is engaged in, and in which by your representation he has made so considerable a progress, I assure you, it will be intirely agreeable to me, not only because I should be glad to see Col. Armand himself provided for; but because the corps he is raising may furnish means of employment to a number of the foreign Officers who are hitherto unemployed." 5

 

         July 15, 1778  Ottendorff reappears based on a letter from General Heath to George Washington from Heath's headquarters in Boston;

" Dear General, This moment Col Armand & a Major Ottendorff called at my quarters and being about to set out for the army, the major desires I would write your excellency that he is exceedinly sorry for leaving the service the last year, and wishes overlook it, that he desires to again serve in the army. He has made several applications to the navy board to serve in the navy, he is now requesting Col Armand  to let him serve in his Corps if agreeable to you nd Col Armand informs me he would like him as a major if your excellency should approve of it, and has desired me to mention it. I know nothing of the Major's abilities or the reasons  his leaving the army, both of which ( illegible) are known to your excellency"

 

At which point Washington writes back to Heath on August 14, 1778;

"Dear Sir:

            Within a few days past I have been favoured with your several letters of the 15, 17 and 25 Ulto. and of the 6th. Inst.

Mr. Attendorff shall never act as a Major or in any capacity as an officer in the army with my consent; and I am much surprised that he should entertain the most distant idea that he would be received. His conduct deserves a very different notice." 6

        

         July 27, 1778

George Washington to Col. William Malcom

Head Quarters [White Plains]  July 27, 1778.

            "...I some time ago directed the German or Armand's Regiment to be sent to Fort Arnold as the most proper place of security, they being chiefly deserters. But as the order has been neglected, I now inclose a letter to Colo. Armand or the commanding Officer directing him to repair thither. I cannot at present spare Graham's Regiment. A few days ago I sent up eight persons to Fort Arnold who were sent from Vermont. If they could be confined in any other place, I think it would be more proper, as, if they are really inimical, they may make themselves masters of the state of the Garrison, Works &ca. If you can see Govr. Clinton, you may consult him upon a proper place." 7

 

            August 3, 1778

George Washington to William Malcom

Head Quarters, August 3, 1778.

"Sir: At the earnest intercession of Colo. Armand I have consented to advance his Corps, consisting of Horse and Foot, near the Enemy's lines. You will therefore permit Lieut. Colo. Vrigny95 to march with the Foot of that Corps to Camp." 8

[Note 95: Lieut. Col.--de Vrigny, Armand's Corps. He resigned in October, 1778.]

 

            August 28, 1778 "A report of the Commissioned Officers Belonging to the Corps commanded lately by Col. Armand at present commanded by Capt Antoni Selin"  - shows Schott as taken prisoner June 77 and under his Commission date "not known" Also it shows Armand as Colonel and Ottendorf as Major and both of them have "not known" under the "Resigned" heading. It is signed " Antoni Selin, Captain, Commander of these Corps".  (This would lead one to believe that Selin doesn't know what happened to Ottendorf or Armand and is just continuing the command that he has of Ottendorf and /or Armand.  Ottendorf had left his command as stated previously and Armand was organizing his new Corps of Partisans and Chasseurs)   9

            August 31, 1778

George Washington to Continental Congress

Head Quarters, White Plains, August 31, 1778.

 

"Sir: I would take the liberty to inform Congress, that Colo. Armand is come to camp with his Corps and has applied to me for commissions for his Officers. By the Resolution for establishing the Corps, it was to be officered out of the Foreigners then commissioned in our service, who were not, nor could be provided for in any of the Regiments. Instead of this, there are only three Officers in his Corps, who before held any Commissions in our service Viz: Lieut. Colo. Vrigny31 and Captains Mercley and Shafner.32 The Two last were only Lieutenants and are now appointed to Captaincies, contrary, it seems to me, to the spirit and intention of the Resolution.33 As Colo. Armand has departed from his instructions which must govern me, I am not authorised to grant the Commissions he requires, and am therefore under the necessity of troubling Congress, with the arrangement of the Corps, No. 1,34 as it now actually stands for their consideration and decision. The Colonel founds his deviation from the Resolve upon some verbal intimation given him, that the part in question would not be insisted on." 10

[Note 31: Resigned in October, 1778.]

[Note 32: Capts. Charles Markit and George Shaftnet. Both had been in Pulaski's Legion.]

[Note 33: The resolve of June 25, 1778. (SeeJournals of the Continental Congress.)]

[Note 34: This arrangement (inclosure No. 1), in Armand's writing, is in thePapers of the Continental Congress, No. 152, 6, 383. It is indorsed by Charles Thomson: "Arrangement of Armand's Corps made by the sd. Armand wch. Genl. Washington cannot confirm. referred to the board War."]

(We think Selin was not with Armand at this time otherwise GW would have mentioned his name because he held a service commission. Remember just before this, Selin files the report on Officers and Men of the Corps lately commanded by Armand which he signs as in his command at present and Armand, a few weeks later, files almost the same report  stating Selin's company was attached to his Corps. see Aug 3,1778).

Sometime between Aug & Oct 1778 we believe that  Schott is freed by prisoner exchange and resumes command of "a company".

            Sept. 3, 1778 

"A Return of the Independent Corps of Cavallerie and of Foot, commanded by Collonel Armand, Granwitch Sept. 3 1778"  signed by Armand states:

 "4 Companys lattly annexed to my company from which three without Captns to be incorporated in the others companys."11

( This entry tells us that Armand is treating  the original Corps de Ottendorf as a new addition to his Corps when in reality it is the original unit he commanded when he came to America. My feeling here  is that because he did not recruit the men for the original Corps he never really accepted them as his command. Now that he has recruited his own men  he acts as if the original Ottendorf's Corps has been annexed to his new Corps which "have all been recruited in Massachusetts State." I feel the reality here is that he has not enough men to complete his ranks and needs the 47 men that Selin commands. Those men are the combined Companies of Ottendorf's under Selin, possibly since July 1777. The return shows Selin as the only Captain and Schott is listed as a prisoner. This most likely was what was left of the "Corps" after the battle of Short Hills June 1777. JWF) 

           

            The Oct 1778 muster rolls now shows "Schott's Company" with Schott in command and Selin serving  as an additional Captain and the men are the same ones from Selin's June 78 Muster rolls.  (now it is called "Schott's Company" as opposed to "Selin's Corps" of  June 78 ) During this time period there is evidence that Capt.'s Selin and Schott's relationship with Col. Armand is strained and that they and the men under their command are about to split off from Armand altogether.

            On November 9th 1778 Washington receives a letter from Armand in which he is explaining that he had applied to the Board of War to have "... the commissions of my officers answered..." Armand had yet to receive a reply and is seeking Washington's help.  Several lines later, Armand writes "...if i conserve that comand or not, i beg your excellency to take the old coprs annexed to me from the new one being impossible that the officiere in the both side live well altogether." 12 (We believe  Armand's reference of the "old corps" to be Selin and Schott.  Armand and "his" officers, {that he is asking to receive commissions}, are at odds with Selin and Schott).

 

            November 16, 1778

George Washington to Continental Congress

Head Quarters, Fredericksburgh, November 16, 1778.

 

            "Sir: I had the honor of receiving your favour of the 6th, yesterday, with the inclosed copy of a letter from the President of the Council of New Jersey, relative to an expected attack upon the Western frontier of that state. I have just received a letter from General Hand,87 giving intelligence of an attack upon Colonel Alden's regiment at Cherry-Valley, effected by surprise, in consequence of which there is too much reason to apprehend, that regiment may fall a sacrifice. I transmit a copy of the dispatches announcing this disagreeable affair."13

[Note 87: A copy of Hand's letter of November 13, also one of Col. Frederick Fisher, of November 11, and one of Col. Jacob Klock, of November 12, are filed with this one of Washington in thePapers of the Continental Congress. The original of Hand's letter is in theWashington Papers.]

 

            "These depredations of the Enemy give me the most serious concern. I lament that we have not yet had it in our power to give them an effectual check. I am perfectly convinced, that the only certain way of preventing Indian ravages is to carry the war vigorously into their own country; but as this is thought impracticable at this late season of the year from the state of the waters and other impediments, I fear we must content ourselves for the present with defensive precautions, for the present.

 

            I have already informed Congress, that Col. Cortlandt's regiment had marched towards the Minisincks; but having since directed Count Pulaski to proceed with his corps to Cole's fort in that neighbourhood, Col. Cortlandt will take post somewhere between that place and Rochester. Orders are now given to Col. Spencers regiment and Col. Armands corps to join General Pulaski.

 

            This disposition is agreeable to the opinion of Governour Clinton and other Gentlemen acquainted with the Country, whom I have consulted; and is calculated to cover the Eastern frontier of Pensylvania, New Jersey and the western part of New York.

            I shall also immediately send the remainder of General Clinton's Brigade to Albany; when arrived there if any thing offensive can possibly be undertaken it shall be done, if not they will be disposed of in a manner that shall seem best adapted for protection and defence."

          

 

 

 

 

 

             November 16, 1778

George Washington to Philip J. Schuyler

Head Quarters, Fredericksburgh, November 16, 1778.

 

"I ordered Count Pulaski some days ago to march to the Minisincks with his Legion consisting of about 250 Horse and foot, which will be reinforced by Armand's and Spencers Corps, amounting to about the same number. This force you will have in view, in your deliberations, and also Colo. Cortlandts Regiment, which is now between Minisincks and Rochester." 14        

 

           

            On November 17, 1778 Col. Armand again writes Washington reminding him of his request to have his officers commissioned and that he be commissioned a"brigadier". From this letter we also read that he wants to return to France for some reason as soon as his new officers get their commissions. ( It may appear by this letter, he fears that his newly appointed officers (which he is seeking commissions for) may leave the Corps if they are not received and he is away or possibly that Schott & Selin and their officers may leave the Corps) 

          He also writes: "Mr. Shott which told me that he was independant by his commission, has taken his men, and is separated from me with my great satisfaction, him and his officers having (as they persuade everybody) so great authority to head quarters, that they would put me reither under their command than obey mine.  And which to the first difficulty which they had with my others officers, which they reporached often to have not commissions, told them come with me to head quarter the men from Mr. Shott having in fine time thier time out. and mine being inlisted for three ears, it have to be a great justice that the officers which enlisted them have the command upon them. In case your Excellency would ordered the Corps to march, I am ready my self to command our march with him every where your Excellency shall be pleased. but that corps want to be released and if I stay here I shall ask that favour to your Excellency."15( What webelieve we are seeing here is the formal breaking off of Schott and Selin's Corps from Armand's Corps)

           

 

            November 18, 1778

George Washington to David Henley

Head Quarters, Fredericksburg, November 18, 1778.

            "Sir: Colonel Gist handed me your letter of the 16th. Inst.

You will be pleased to continue in your command,20 till circumstances may make it necessary to alter the arrangement, or till my further orders on this subject."21

[Note 20: Henley succeeded Scott in command on the lines at Bedford, N.Y.]

[Note 21: Armand's corps was serving with the light troops under Henley on the lines at this time, and Armand himself, being dissatisfied with the treatment he had received from Congress, requested Washington's leave to go to Philadelphia to settle the affairs of his corps and return to France. Washington furnished him with a letter of introduction to Congress. "He considers his honor as interested in having his engagements with his officers fulfilled and if he can succeed in this, proposes to return immediately to France. Several of these Gentlemen also, he informs me will accompany him. Under these circumstances as the appointments have been made and the Gentlemen have served a considerable time under those appointments, I take the liberty to recommend it to Congress, to grant commissions agreeable thereto." Washington's letter to the President of Congress, dated Nov. 19, 1778, is  in theWashington Papers. (See Washington's letter to the President of Congress, Aug. 31, 1778,ante.)]

            "I need not recommend to you diligence and good conduct in the execution of its different objects. But besides communicating your information as it arises, in the manner which Genl. Scott pursued, and in which you have his instructions, you might make out a table, or something in the way of columns, under which you might range, their magazines of forage, grain and the like, the different corps and regiments, the Works, where thrown up, their connexion, kind and extent, the officers commanding, with the number of guns &ca. &ca.

 

            This table should comprehend in one view all that can be learned from deserters, spies, and persons who may come out from the enemy's boundaries. And tho' it will be a gradual work, and subject to frequent alteration and amendment yet it may be, by attention and proper perseverance made a very useful one. Transcripts may be drawn occasionally from it as you advance, and communicated.

            In the mean time you will direct your utmost exertions to learn every movement which may lead to a positive conclusion with respect to their leaving, or garrisoning New York.

 

            As the troops of Convention are on their way to the North river, on their march to Virginia, you will command the strictest observance of the roads leading from Kingsbridge, as well as in your look outs along the Hudson.

            You will also, in case any of the convention troops should straggle down towards you with an intention to escape into New York, have them secured, that they may be sent into the country. I have no doubt of the faithful execution of these things and of your utmost diligence in the great object of just, constant and authentic intelligence." (GWP)

 

 

             November 20, 1778 Washington writes to General Edward Hand informing him that "...I have thought it would be more agreeable to you to remove down to the Minisink settlement and take command of a Body of troops which we are under the necessity of assembling there to protect that Frontier agains the incursions of the Indians.  The Corp at the Minisink will consist of Count Pulaski's Legion, Colo. Armands Corps and Colo. Spencers Regt. making about 500 Horse and Foot." 16

 

 

           On November 24, 1778 again we find a reference which could have us believe that the Company commanded by Schott is not attached to Armands Corps.

     In a letter from George Washington to Pulaski on this date we read; "I have ordered Col. Spencer with his regiment, Colo. Armand with his corps and Captn. Schot with a party under his command to join you as speedily as possible; The more effectually to enable you, or the Officer commanding to repel any attempts of the enemy in the quarter where you are." 17

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            December 16, 1778

George Washington to Pulaski's Corps Commanding Officer

Head Quarters, Middle Brook, December 16, 1778.

            "Sir: I am informed by the Qr. Mr. General that you have returned to Easton with the Horse of Count Pulaski's and Colo. Armands Corps, not being able to procure Forage at Minisink or in that neighbourhood. It will not be possible for you to remain at Easton, without the greatest inconvenience to the service, as you must consume that Forage which is necessary for the Teams upon the communication and a great deal of that which is intended for this Camp. Colo. Hooper47 the Deputy Qr. Mr. Genl. has directions to canton the Horse under your command in such places as he shall find least liable to the objections above mentioned, you will therefore be directed entirely by him and remove to such place as he shall point out. That no more Forage may be consumed than is absolutely necessary, you are to divest yourself of all supernumerary Waggon and Baggage Horses and of all Dragoon Horses unfit for service, which are to be delivered up to Colo. Hooper who will dispose of them in a proper manner. You are to take particular care that the Officers attend to their Men and Horses that they may be kept in good order and ready to be collected for service at a Moment's warning. I am &ca."48    [Note 47: Col. Robert Lettis Hooper, jr., Deputy Quartermaster General.]

[Note 48: The draft is in the writing of Tench Tilghman.] ROUGH DRAFT OF PART OF WASHINGTON'S ANALYSIS OF THE PROPOSED EXPEDITION AGAINST CANADA, NOVEMBER, 1778 18

        

   Now in the Minisink region (present day Port Jervis, N.Y.) Capt. Selin and Schott are found to be garrisoned at Decker's Fort and DeWitt's Fort.  These were two of several fortified homes in this region. Decker's, the strongest of these frontier posts, was the home of Maj. Martinus Decker.  DeWitt's Fort was located north of Decker's on the Neversink River, near the town of Cuddebackville (Orange Co., N.Y.)

          

             On December 23rd 1778 General Hand writes to John Paul Schott at Minisink:

 

"Sir                                                     

            I understood from you yesterday that you Intended accompanying the Count to

head Quarters, Therefore think it necessary to inform you that the Corps under

your command is to take Post at in [sic] two Fortified Houses on that Branch of

Delaware called Neversink about Ten Miles above where Col. Armands Corps now

lies, you will therefore give the necessary orders (previous to our departure)

for the parties marching on Saturday next, the Officer who will command them

shall have his Particular Instructions from me before that time¯

            I am Sir your Obedt. Servt."

            Edwd. Hand  19

 

 

 

            In December 25th 1778, Capt. Selin sends a letter to Gen. Hand  from "Minisinks".  He reports that he has received his orders but had fallen from his horse and was injured.  Selin cannot leave Minisink for three or four days but will send Lt. Lawrence Myers "... with the Core tomorrow morning to the Place you Direct..." 20 (Selin signs this letter as "Antoni Selin, Capt., Commander at Present".  Capt. Schott may have been elsewhere at this time.)

 

 

1779

 

         On January 2, 1779  there is a "Return of the Officers and Men Stationed at De Witts  and Deckers Fort...belonging to the Corps commanded by Captn. John Paul Schott..."

According to this return, there are 17 men at Decker's and 18 at DeWitt's Fort.  It is noted that Lt. Myers commands DeWitt's. 1 (Selin may still be recovering from his injury and has not yet arrived) (See appendix IV in "Selin's History")

     

        On January 14, 1779  at Minisink, "Capt. Sealing" (Selin) is serving on a court martial board involving one of Count Pulaski's men, Capt. Kotkowski. 2

 

           February 7, 1779 , George Washington writes to Hand on February 7 with more proof that Capt's. Selin and Schott have separated from Armand's command. In part, Washington writes:     "...There is a small corp under the immediate command of Capt. Schott, which formerly belonged to Colo. Armands old and now attached to his new Corps.  As they are unhappy in their situation on account of a disagreement in point of Rank..I have thought it best that they shall also march to the Southward with Pulaski's Legion. You will therefore give Capt. Schott orders to march to Lancaster, where he will also find orders how to proceed."   Washington changes his mind when on February 8, he writes "...I have determined that Captn Schott's Corps shall remain where they are, as I find they occupy a small detached post. 3

           ("As they are unhappy in their situation on account of a disagreement in point of Rank,"  is in reference to Armand 's continual attempts to have his officers that he recruited promoted in the ranks with disregard for Selin & Schott's earlier commission dates and seniority. (See November 17, 1778))              

 

            On February 8, 1779, Washington writes to Count Pulaski, whose corps is in Minisink (see letter previous letter of 2/7/79-GW to Hand). In part, Washington informs Pulaski that "... The detached corps under Captn Schott cannot be spared at this time..." 4

         

            March 7, 1779,  "A Return of the State of Clothing of the Independent Corps of Foot Commanded by Captn John Paul Schott Mar. 7th, 1779" listing 44 men present. 5

 

            On March 9, 1779 Capt. Selin writes to Gen. Hand from "Fortt Deckers".  The letter is brief, and although it has been somewhat difficult to transcribe, apparently has something to do with complaints from Tory women. 6

 

            On March 12, 1779 Capt. Schott, "Comdg. at Dewitts Fort", writes to Gen. Hand  informing him of a confrontation  between Arthor Ventail and a Tory by the name of Robert Land ("...one of the greatest villans in this part...")  Capt. Schott also requests "...som rum for my men for fatig, as I am about finishing the fort..." 7

        Two days later, on March 14, 1779 Capt. Selin sends Gen. Hand a letter telling him that "...Capt. Lieut Decker of Millitia with his Party.." caught two Tories and had just brought them in for questioning."  It is interesting to note that one of the Tories was Robert Land, who was mentioned in Capt. Schott's letter of March 12. 8

 

 

 

 

 

            On March 20,1779 Gen. Hand writes to Washington from Minisink requesting that

"...  we may be Supplied with Tents, Camp kittles & canteens all which are destitute of- we also want 121 Firelocks & 286 Bayonets... which I hope will be ordered up Immediately- Armand & Schotts Corps Particularly are much in want of Shirts..."

Gen. Hand's list includes Capt. Schott in need of 6 firelocks, and 6 bayonets. 

                At the end of this five page letter, Gen. Hand informs Washington that "...Col. Armand Orderd the Cavalry of his Corps form the Place where I informed your Excly they were.... without acquainting me of his intention, nor did I know it until the Col. departed for Boston. Tho I think the Col, to blame I am not sory the troops movd as I dont think I would make any use of them here." 9     

 

          There are two Returns  for "The Independent Company of Foot": one on March 22, 1779 and one  on May 16, 1779 from Wyoming.   Both returns list Schott as "In command" or "Commander of the Corps". The last return makes mention of them being the 2nd Pa. Company. 10   

          

          March 24, 1779  Washington writes to Gen. Hand stating in part, "... As soon as the Weather will admit I intend the German Battalion, Armand's and Schotts Corps shall move over to Wyoming to take post there...",

        "... Inclosed you have a Resolve of Congress of the 15th. instant which includes Spencers, Armands, and Schotts Corps, be pleased to communicate it to them, and direct them to make the Returns called for..." 

        "... It is with surprize I observe in your return, so many men absent on Furlough from Spencers and the German Regiment; let them be immediately recalled, and inform me how it happens that the prest. total of Armands Corps is 73 only and by the last return 91 without any reason for the difference..." 11

                                   

            March 30, 1779

            "Return of Camp equipage, horses and waggoons in possession of the Brigade of foot commanded by Edward Hand Esq. Brigade General.30th March 1779"

 

Capt. J.P. Shott's Corps

3 camp kettles

4 canteens

1 axes

2 spades

2 saddles

5 waggoon

2 waggoons

 

            "Return of Camp Equipage wanted in the Brigade Commanded by General Hand. 30th March 1779 "12

 

Capt. Schott's Corps

2 Officer's tents

9 soldier's tents

2 Bell tents

9 Camp Kettles

47 canteens

 

 

                  Also there is a return filed which was taken from Pa. Historical Association 13

 

            Cap. J.P. Shott Regt.  No. of officers and privates   51

March 30, 1779

 

 

 

            March 31st 1779 Edward Hand writes Captain Schott:

 

Minisink 31st. March 1779

"Sir

            His Excy. has directed me to send a Carefull Officer to Head Quarters, to

receive and bring [to this] Place a Quantity of Arms, Cloathing & Camp Equipage

for the Troops on this Station; for which there is a return inclosed in the

Packet you carry for his Excy. I have determined to send you on that duty as

you may at the same time bring the Pay of your Corps__you will therefore proceed

immediately to head Quarters, to receive his Excys. Orders for the Stores

wanted__

            as the Stores are much wanted, and the Season advances fast I must request you

may be very Industrious, in collecting the Stores and return as Soon as

Possible

                        I am Sir

                                    your Obedt. Servt.

                                                            Edwd. Hand" 14

       

            On April 1, 1779 George Washington writes to Gen. Hand after having received a letter from Col. Zebulon Butler at Wyoming reporting "...that a Body of the enemy, consisting of Indians and others, had made their appearance at Wyoming, and had destroyed several Houses and Barns... I must therefore desire you to order the German Regiment, and Armands and Schotts Corps to march to that place with the utmost expedition..." 14

     

            Also on April 1, 1779 George Washington writes to Col. Zebulon Butler "...Considering the importance of the place (Wyoming) I have ordered up the German regiment, Armand's and Schott's corp as a reinforcement..." 15

 

        April 4, 1779 George Washington wrote to Gen. Hand: "Sir: the Arms, Cloathing and Camp Equipage for Colo. Spencers and the German Regiment and for Armands and Schotts Corp, of which Capt Schott brought down a return, will be sent up the Susquehannah to Wyoming."  "...I have given you this information lest the Corps ordered to Wyoming, might have waited for Capt. Schotts return before they marched, which should they not have done... you will immediately put them in motion..." 16

         Washington also writes to the Board of War this day: "Gentlemen: Capt. Schott waits upon you with at Return of Arms and Clothing wanting for the several Corps therein mentioned which are ordered over to Wyoming.  The Cloathing could have been furnished from hence, but it will be so much more convenient to send it from Philada. to Esterton upon the Susquehannah and from thence to Wyoming by Water, where it will meet the Troops, that I have directed Capt. Schott to proceed to Philada."

   "I imagine the Arms and Accourtrements had better be ordered from the Magazine at Carlisle, as the distance from thence to Susquehannah is so much shorter than from Philada. or should there be a sufficiency in the hands of the Armourers at Lancaster it will be more convenient still. Capt. Schott will take the order and see that the Articles are safely conveyed to Susquehannah. I am, &c." 17

   (It is also noted that Washington had written to Capt. Schott on April 4, ordering him to Philadelphia to procure arms, accoutrements and clothing from the board of war and to "...use the utmost diligence in having them transported to Estherton upon the Susquehannah and from thence, up to Wyoming by Water,") 18

       

 

 

 

      April 5, 1779 Gen. Hand writes to Major Burchardt of the German Regiment "...you will procedd to Wyoming on the Susquehanna River with the Regiment under your Immediate Command, Col. Armand's and Capt. Schott's corps, the former is commanded at present by Major Lomargn and the latter by Capt. Selin. These corps will join you at or before you reach Col. Stroud's at Fort Penn..."  19 (They are now being ordered to Wyoming and Selin is apparently in command as Schott is in Philadelphia).

 

 

 

            May 12, 1779 Gen. Hand writes to Washington from Wyoming: "...Capt  Schott & the officers of his little corps are very uneasie at their present situation, they wish to be permitted to recruit the Corps to a number that will entitle them to promotion and enable them to distinguish themselves & the Corps- or to be joind to some other Regiment... Captn. Schott i think is a very good and active officer  would therefore be sorry to loose him." 20

            Then Washington replies to Gen. Hand on May 31 from Middlebrook, about the above mentioned situation: "...When Captn. Schot was at this camp I expressed my sentiments to him pretty freely to which I would refer.  The difficulties attending the introduction of officers of one corps into those of another, are such as to forbid almost any further experiment of this kind.  If Captn. Schott and his officers should not be willing to submit to the inconveniences of the service I can only lament their loss." 21

           

            On May 16, 1779 Capt. Schott compiles a "Return of the Corps of Foot Commanded by Capt. John Paul Schott..."signed by Schott, "Commander of the Corp. Wyoming 18th May 1779. It reports two Captains (Schott and Selin) 22

 

           

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            On the May 18th 1779 a return is filed from which we extract the following in regards to Selin and Schott:

"Return of the Continental Troops at Wyoming under the command of Edward Hand Esq. Brigad. General"

 

Schott's Corps

2 Captains

2 Lieutenants

1 Quarter Master Sergeant

6 Sergeants

1 Drums & Fifes

32 Present Fit for Duty

3 Sick Absent

3 On Command

2 On Furlough

40 Total

 

            May 28th 1779 A return for provision issued:

           

"Return of the daily  issues of provision to the troops at the post of Wyoming from May 9th to the 28th." 23

May 11  Capt. Schott's Corps         May 14 Capt. Schott's Corps
No. days 3                                         No. days 3
No. Men 41                                       No. men 41
No. rations 123                                 No. rations 123
lbs. flour 123                                     lbs. flour 123

lbs. pork 95                                       lbs. pork 82

lbs. beef 0                                          lbs. beef 0

lbs. fish 60                                          lbs. fish 51

 

May 17  Capt. Schott's Corps         May 20  Capt. Schott's Corps

No. days 3                                         No. days 3

No. men 41                                       No. men 44

No. rations 123                                 No. rations 132

lbs. flour 123                                     lbs. flour 132

lbs. pork 82                                       lbs. pork 160

lbs. beef 0                                          lbs. beef  0

lbs. fish 51                                          lbs. fish 0

May 23 Capt. Schott's Corps          May 26 Capt. Schott's Corps

No. Days 3                                        No. Days 3

No. Men 48                                       No. Men 47

No. rations 144                                 No. rations 141

lbs. flour 144                                     lbs. flour 141

lbs. pork 0                                         lbs. pork 0                

lbs. beef 180                                      lbs. beef 176

lbs. fish 0                                            lbs. fish 0

 

( The original return lists every unit receiving rations under General Hand's command. We have listed only that which pertains to Schott's Corps to save space)

 

 

            June 1st  1779  Taken from the Orderly Book of General Hands Brigade at Headquarters in Wyoming Pennslyvania:

            "A Detachment consisting of 2 Captains, 4 Subalterns and 120 men including non com officers from this garrison including the troops arriving today to be ready to proceed tomorrow with the boats now here to Estherton to assist in working a number of boats from whence to this place The men if they do this duty properly will be paid for these services for the better executing this important service the Genl. wishes that the men in the different Corps who understand boating may be selected, with respect to this _______ proportions"  24    

            Between June 2nd and June 18th 1779  Captain Anthoni Selin was put in command of this combined Corps which was noted as the "Different Corps" made up of officers, non comissioned officers and Rank & File from the various units that were quartered in Wyoming under General Hand. Their task was to bring up boats, supplies & provisions from Middletown Pennsylvania to Wyoming Pennsylvania via the Susquehanna River where General Sullivan was assembling his forces for their march north. The following is an excerpt from the Return that Captain Selin filed on his return: ( the usage of the term "Different Corps" is a puzzle - at this point in time it appears that this was used as a term for a "specially selected corps" led by Selin and not a random term for all the small units present. J.W.F.)

            "A Return of the detachment from the Different Corps under the Command of
Capt. Antoni Selin bringing Boats from  Middletown to Wyoming from 2nd. to 18 Inst. June being 17 days."

 

Capt. Schott's Corps

Antoni Selin Captain

John Gledka Sergeant (Gelecke)

 

Privates

John  Levering (?)

Peter Carback

Jacob Reynert

Christopher Felts (Fels)

Total

1 Capt

1 Sergeant

4 Privates

 

Total of the whole Detachment

 

German Regiment                          Col. Smith's Regiment

2 Lieutenants                                                2 Lieutenants

1 Sergeant                                         2 Sergeants

2 Corporals                                       2 Corporals

1 drummer                                        35 Privates

40 Privates

 

 

 

 

Col. Armand's Corps                                  Capt. Schott's Corps

1 Doctor                                                         1 Captain

6 Privates                                                       1 Sergeant

                                                                        4 Privates

 

Capt. Spalding's Co.                                  

1 Captain

2 Sergeants

4 Corporals

30 Privates

 

25 ( The original return lists every name of the men attached to the "Different Corps"- these have been ommitted in this document to save space. The additional Captain of this detachment was Captain Spalding )

 

            On June 3rd 1779 Gen'l Hand writes to Schott:

 

"Sir

            There are at Estherton, Kelso?s Ferry, & Middleton, a Quantity of stores of

Different Kinds for this department exposed to the Insults of the Disaffected

Country People or Stragling Parties of the Enemy¯

            You will therefore proceed immediately with the Corps under your Command to

Estherton on this River, where you will Consult with Col. Cornels. Cole, Major

Rd. Claiborne; & the Commissary who has the Care of the stores in that line,

and after finding where the most valuable Stores are Deposited, and what Places

are the most exposed, you will dispose of your men in the Manner you and the [

   ] mentioned Gentn. think best for [      ] of the Stores, when the last of

the sto[res] [   ] Ship?d  for this Place, you will retu[rn] [      ] them.

                        I am Sir your Obedt. H[             ]"

                                                Edwd: Hand  27

 

            On June 28, 1779 Washington writes to Armand instructing him "...without delay, march your corps towards Bedford, to join the troops at or near that place under the command of Colonel Moylan.  You are not for the present to go with the corps yourself...as there is a complaint of a serious nature against you made by Mr. Vandeburgh..." 26

 

          July 5, 1779

            George Washington to Charles Armand-Tuffin, Marquis de la Rouerie

"Sir: The complaints of your corps daily increased. You will immediately on receipt of this send it off under the Officer next in command, to join Col. Moylan, at or near Bedford. Yourself will remain with the Witness you have to attend a Court Martial which will sit tomorrow morning at 10 oClock at New Windsor"27

 

          July 13, 1779 Gen. Hand writes to Gen. Sullivan from Kelso's Ferry regarding supply boats coming up from Sunbury.  "Capt. Schott's Corps" is cited as being used as escort. 28

 

           

 

 

 

            On July 31, 1779 Gen. Sullivan's army leaves Wyoming in the afternoon, marching 10 miles.  Rev. William Rogers, Chaplin in Hand's 3rd Brigade wrote the Order of March in his journal "...the Eleventh Pennsylvania regiment and Captain Spalding's independent company advance by platoon from the center of the line...the German regiment and Captain Schott's independent corps from the right of the said regiment, formed a column and marched on the right of the Eleventh... Schott's riflemen in Indian file..." 29

 

            August 12-13, 1779    Capt. Selin's Company, part of Gen. Hand's 3rd Brigade of the Sullivan Expedition, is now in Tioga (Pa.). On the evening of August 12, Capt. Selin takes part in the march to Chemung. Lt. Col. Hubley cites in his journal: "…Light corps under the command of Gen. Hand, led the van…"

            Upon their arrival in the early morning of August 13, they found "Old Chemung" abandoned.  The army then moved up to "New Chemung".  Once there, the remainder of the Light Corps including the 11th Pa. Regiment and the "two independent companies" (Capt. Selin's and Capt. Simon Spaulding's Wyoming Independent Co.) under the command of Gen. Hand were to lead the attack on the town. 

            They found "New Chemung" to be deserted. From there, the 11th Pa. Regiment and Capt.     Selin and Spaulding's companies were ordered to "…move some miles up the path ….if possible to make some discoveries…" After proceeding about one mile they found burning campfires, deerskins, blankets, etc.  Lt. Col. Hubley writes that they continued on with Capt. Walker and 24 men of the 11th Pa. in the van, the remainder of the 11th Pa.  In the middle, and "the two independent companies" (Capt. Selin's and Spaulding's) covering the rear. "In this order we moved somewhat better than a mile beyond this place" 

After about one mile, Capt. Walker's group was fired upon by approximately 20-30

Delawares and Tories under Capt. Rowland Montour, concealed on a hill. The rest of the

11th Pa. Regiment and Capt. Selin's and Capt. Spaulding's men moved up.  Lt. Col. Hubley

writes: "…we immediately formed a front…pushed up the hill with a degree of intrepidity

seldom to be met with, and under a very severe fire from the savages…"

            This offensive movement dislodged the Indians and Tories and they began their retreat. American losses were 6 killed, 12 wounded, most from the 11th Pa. Regiment.  It is believed that the Indians and Tories had only one killed. Following this action, those involved in this battle returned to Chemung to complete the destruction of the village. They then returned to Tioga, arriving the evening of August 13. 30

 

 

           

            August 14, 1779 Armand is put under arrest.  (This would mean that Armand's Regiment is still under Col  Moylan's command?) General Washington writes Robert Howe the following:

            Head Quarters, West-point, August 14, 1779.

"Dear Sir: I have to acknowledge your favor of yesterday. In a Letter of Col. Hamilton's a few days ago, to you, I signified that Col. Armand should be put under arrest. In one from Col. Armand to the former it does not appear that this had taken place. Should this be so you will be pleased to have the order executed, as it would be unmilitary to continue him doing duty, while the court are determining on his case. Altho' this may be repugnant to his feelings, yet I dare say he will be reconciled, when he considers the consequences that might ensue from dispensing in a single instance with the established laws and usages of the army."   31

           

            August 23rd, 1779  we find in the Orderly book of Colonel Oliver Spencer's Additional Regiment, the following again with reference to the "different Corps":

"Head Quarters   Tioga 23d Augst: 1779

.....The Troops who want Shoes or Overhalls are to make returns this day and draw them....

            After Orders

.....The different Corps are immediately to call on the Qr. Mr Genl for fascine Knives, Knapsacks, Haversacks, & Canteens." 32  ( Again the use of the term "Different Corps" as commaned by Selin?  along with mention of Facine Knives_ possibly used by Pioneers ?)

 

            Lt. Col. Francis Barber offers three references in his Orderly Book regarding Capt. Schott and Selin.  On Aug. 24, from Fort Sullivan (Tioga Pt.) he writes: "... Captains Schott  & Rosencrans, commanding corps, are permitted to ride..."( Could this possibly mean Schott was ill or injured to receive this permission?)

 

             August 27: (Head Quarters near Chemung) "...one man from each Regiment to be added to Capt. Selin's Corp of pioneers."

                "Head Quarters, Caterines Town, Sept'r. 2 ... The Com'r in Chief is truly sensible of Capt. Bellard & Selin & Ensn. Dodge with their Corps of pioneers for their Great alartness in forwarding the march of the army yesterday & tanks them for their industry. 33

 

         August 31, 1779  Armand is acquitted.  In George Washington's General orders of August 31st 1779 we read:

 

"At a General Court Martial of the line whereof Colonel Stewart was President held at West Point the 25th instant, Colonel Armand was tried upon the following charges:

 

            For 1st. During Colonel Armand's stay at Colonel Vandeburgh's house (which was about two hours), he with sundry of his officers in a most atrocious and wanton manner, beat and abused a son of his, without cause of offence.

            Secondly. Putting him under a guard of two Centinels, giving orders that Vandeburgh, or any other person should not speak to him, keeping him confined during their stay, and freightening or compelling him to ask Pardon, before he was dismissed.

            Thirdly. Putting the whole of his family and some Gentlemen belonging to the Continental Army (during their stay) in bodily fear.

            Fourthly. Knocking off sundry respectable People's hats from their heads for no other reason than because they dare to stand in his presence covered, tho' some came in promiscuously on hearing so much noise in the house.

            Fifthly. Knocking off Jeremiah Clark's hat and kicking him out of his (Armand's) room, an apartment where he was, for only requesting Colonel Armand to enlarge Colo. Vandeburgh's son.

            The Court do acquit Colonel Armand of the 1st. charge, also of the 3rd. and 4th. charges; but are of opinion that he is guilty of the first part of the 2nd. charge, also of the 5th. charge, being a breach of the 1st. Article 9th. Section of the Articles of War. They find him also guilty of the charge exhibited against him by Jonas Adams, being a breach of the aforesaid Article and do sentence him unanimously to be reprimanded in General Orders.

            The Confinement of a Citizen by military authority was irregular and blamable, and there appears to have been an improper degree of warmth in Colonel Armand's conduct towards Clarke and Adams." 34 

 

           October 3, 1779  A 4th NY Regiment Orderly Book entry (believed to be from Lt.Peter Elsworth) records the following incident: "...Christian Beagle in Capt Schots Core Charged with Desertion and takeing with a Sorril Mare and Read Great Cout the property of Capt Ceuling (Selin) was tryed by the Same Court found Guilty and Sentenced 100 Lashes and put under Stopages untill he pays Capt. Ceuling what the Mare and Coult where Judged to be worth at the time he took them..." 35

   (At this time, part of Sullivan's army is marching from Ft. Sullivan (Tioga, Pa.) to Wyoming.)

 

            From early October 1779 to March of 1780 Selin & Schott are garrisoned at Wyoming. 

            An Orderly Book from the 4th N.Y. Regiment cites:  "Head Quarters wyoming
Oct. 8th  1779
... The German Battl and Shotts Core and Cap Spaldings Company is to Remain as A Garrison at this Post of which Col Butler is to have Command." (Col. Zebulon Butler) 36

           

            On November 17, 1779  the Pennsylvania Gazette contained an article regarding an event involving Col. Armand which in part reports: "Camp at PeekKill, Nov. 8... Last night, Col. Armand with 100 infantry, and about 30 horse, marched down ... within four miles of Kingsbridge...took Major Bearmore and five others prisioners... and returned without the loss of a single man..." 37

 

             November 26, 1779  while at Wyoming, Capt. Schott writes the following letter to the War Council:  

    "Gentlemen,

            I am a Hessian Born, by Inclination, as well as duty bound an American I have the Honour to be a Captn in the Continental Army ever since the 6th day of November 1776.  I had the Misfortune to be taken Prisoner on the 26th of June 1777, in the Battle of Short Hills, where I suffer'd the greatest Cruelty man could Suffer.  I was struck, kick'd abused and almost perished for Hunger; At that time I was offer'd one thousand pounds and a Majority in the Enemy's New Levies, but I despided their offer, and was determined to suffer death before I would betray the Cause I was Engaged in, Relying on the Country's Generosity to Reward me for my Grievances. 

         When I was Exchanged I got the Command of that Corps I now Command.  I made frequent applications to the Honourable Board of War, to grant me the Rank of a Major, and the liberty to Inlist Men and raise the Corps again to its form Strength, by which I thought to have an opportunity to take satisfaction of the Enemy in an Honourable way, for the Ill usage I received when a prisoner, which I would have done, or died in the attempt, but was always refused, having had no opportunity to Distinguish byself I was even left out to the Arrangement of the Line with the rest of the officers in this Corps.  I still thought that I was entitled to the benefit of the provision made by your Honours, for the Officers and Soldiers in the line, but Sending Captn. Selin to your Honours lately with a Return of the State of the Corps, you was pleas'd to write the following to the Honourable Board of War.  That the more liberal the provision, the more necessary it was, that it should be Distributed with occonomy and prudence.

        That you Honours could not think of Settling the States with the Support of officers who had but little more than nominal Commands, but at the same time that you was willing to provide for us on a Scale consisting with the public Service, if therefore the Men could be Inlisted for the War, and all cou'd be thrown into one Company and annexed to the line of the State, that you was then Inclinded to provide for us, and the Supernumerary Officers to be disposed of as other Cases, or be left to the publick at large.  As for my own part I apply to the Honourable Major General Sullivan, Lt General Hand, Maxwell and others, under whose Command I had the Honour to serve, that I always had more than Nominal Command but leaving it Intirely to you Honours Judement to Dispose of the Corps as you think proper, and a favourable Line from you will for ever Oblige."

                                                                                    Your Honours Most Obedient                                                                                                                        and Most Humble Servt.

                                                                                                            John P. Schott, Capt.

Garrison, Wyoming, Novr 26th, 1779 38

 

    

December 19, 1779 From Wyoming,  Lt. John Jenkins of the Independent Wyoming Company noted in his journal:  "Capt. Selin set out for Philadelphia." 39

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

           

1780      

      Troops at Wyoming in 1780 included, "...Capt. Simon Spauldings Independent Company, being the consolidation of Ransom and Durkee, was stationed at Wilksbarre Fort with Capt. John Paul Schotts Rifle Corps. and a detachment from the German Regiment under the command of Capt. Michael, make about 120 men. Militia consisted of one company under the command of Capt. John Franklin."1

           

           Feb 1780 George Washington merges what is left of Pulaski's and Henry Bedkin's  into Armand's.

 

            February 6, 1780 Washington writes to Armand"... the infantry with Selin is now necessarily employed on the frontier, and cannot at this time be conveniently relieved; besides the circumstances under which that corps was formerly separated from yours makes me unwilling to recommend a reunion...."      Selin is not merged with Armand. Congress now forms Armand's Corps into  "a Legionary Corps". 2 (It appears that there is some problem with  Selin being reunited with Armand. Most likely it was the disagreement in point of rank between Selin and Armand's officers as cited earlier.)

 

            February 15, 1780 George Washington writes the Continental Congress War Board and in the letter he writes: "Unfortunately I have but very inaccurate States of these Corps in general and from this circumstance and the remote and dispersed situation of many of them much time must be spent in obtaining them. As particular Returns of most of these, so far as least as respected the States from which the Men came, have been transmitted to your Office in consequence of the Act of the 15th of March last. I might perhaps derive some assistance from them and be enabled if I had them to make more early transmissions of the Returns directed by Congress. I would therefore request that the Board would favor me by the earliest opportunity with the Returns of this kind, of the German Battallion, Baylors Regiment of Dragoons, and of Von heers Marachaussie Corps, with any particular States they may have respecting the terms of the Men's inlistments. The Levies required being connected with and indeed made dependant in these Returns; The Board I am convinced will feel the propriety of the earliest attention to this business and will most willingly afford me every aid in their power with respect to it. If they have a particular State of the late Rawlings Corps of Shot's and Seley's Companies, and of the Regiments at Fort Pitt, I shall be obliged by their favouring me with it." 3

 

 

            March 1780 

            Return of clothing issued from the magazine at Philadelphia

from 30 August 1779 to March 1780.4

(by order of the Board of War to)

Schott's Indep. Corps

41 new coats

41 new vests

82 Privates shirts

82 Privates shoes

41 hats

41 woolen overalls

82 socks

41 shoe buckles

            There is a  "muster of the corps" while at Wyoming dated March 28, 1780 is signed by Capt.'s Schott and Selin and Lt. Conrad Latour.

 

            During 1780 there were  petitions to the war department stemming from a dispute about rank between Selin & Schott.       

 

            On March 31, 1780 Secretary Benjamin Stoddert writes to Board of War President Reed, "....with respect to Capt. Schott & Capt. Selin, the board conceives  that if Col. Weltner cannot himself settle the dispute between them, that a board of officers...should determine which is best intitled to the preference."   

 

            On April 4, 1780 Board of War President Reed writes to Col. Weltner "... the Case of Capt. Schott & Selin; it would not be proper for us to decide a Point of military Promotion..." 5

 

            On April 9,1780  Lt. Col. Lud. Weltner at wrote to the Board of War from Northumberland "... I have been informed by letter from Captain Selin stationed at Wyoming that there were three of the Inhabitants of that place taken prisoners by another party of Indians and also made their escape, killed two and wounded three of the Indians and brought in six rifles, one sword and two Tomahawks.  They say upon their way up river, they fell in upon two parties of Indians, one party 25 and the other 8 coming down to fall of the West Branch." 6

           

            April 27, 1780 George Washington, in a letter to the Board of War,  writes: "Sir: As the inclosed representation from Capt. Schott to me implies that some steps have been taken by the Board respecting the incorporation of his and Capt. Selins Companies, with the German Battalion, I have not thought proper to give any opinion upon it, until I am informed how far the representation agrees with the measures which the Board may have adopted upon the occasion..." 7 ( This never takes place. Washington said he had no opinion on this  matter and nothing in Congress appears concerning it.)

 

            On May 15th 1780  Col. Zebulon Butler writes General Washington from the Wyoming Settlement:

"May it please your Excellency

            Your order of the 7th. April came late to hand.  I shall  wait your excellency's further Orders. Nothing material has happen since my last, only the men mentioned in my last being taken at Fishing Creek & came in with the Indian guns,tomahawks & as the first party did, and actually brought in two Indian Scalps. I have heard of late mischiefs being done on the West branch of Susq.R and on Delawaer but none in this quarter.  I have orders from the board of war to engage thirty of the militia which I have done for the defense of this frontier.  Capt. Seeling the bearrer will  hand this to your Excellency he is a gentleman of the Free Core that is stationed at this post and has leave of absence to wait on your excellency as he says on      business respecting the Core.  He expects to  return to this post immediately----"

            I have the honour to be your Excellency's Most obt.

                        Humble servt. Zeb Butler Col. 8
(It appears from reading this that Captain Selin went to see General Washington through a leave of absence to possibly discuss the situation of his command of the Corps with regard to Captain Schott and their dispute over rank)

            On July 10th, 1780 Captain Schott writes General Washington:

"Sir

 

            I am very sorrow to be thus troublesome to your Excellency but the justness of my cause will excuse my freedom, Capt. Selin refuses to make any muster roles or returns of the soldiers in his company in the name of the corps under my command.  He says that I have no written orders from your Excellency  to command the corps and he won't take no orders from me because he has more men than I have, but the way he took to get those men I have wrote to your Excellency allretty. (Their recruitments?) may bring on great trouble amongst the soldiers .  I therefore beg your Excellency for a line of directions how to act and you will ever oblige your Excellency's most obedient and most

                                                                        Humble Servant"

                                                                        John P. Schott, Capt

Wyoming

July 10th. 1780

 

N.B. All the news that is here I believe Coll. Butler has wrote to your Excellency.9

 

 

 

 Some time in 1780 Captain John Paul Schott married Naomi Sill in the Wyoming settlement:

            "the occasion being one of great joy in the settlement" He also resided there 10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1781

           

            Feb 9, 1781 from the Journal of the Continental Congress there is a reference to Selin as  " Ordered  -- In favor of Capt. Selin- Paymaster to Capt. Paul Schott's Corps." 1

 

 

            March 15th 1781  We have an excerpt from the Regimental Orders of Hazen's Regiment. (GWP)

"Capt. Selin's to make the 9th.  Company, which is to do duty with "the Regiment."

 

            July 18th 1781  Captain Schott Writes General Washington:

"To his execellency General Washington

 

The memorial of Capt. John Paul Schott, most humble servant.

            That your memorialist has served these United States ever since Sept. of 1776 as a Captain and by the last arrangement of the army, your memorialist became supernumerary that after delivering the noncommissioned officers and soldiers to Col. Hazen, your memorialist then called at headquarters but your excellency were not at home.  He then went to Philadelphia trying to get a settlement and a little money.  But after being six weeks detained at Philadelphia your memorialist got 150 Marreland States dollars which pay at rate of 40 for 1 and the ______      money was then 170 for 1 so that that money did not pay your memeorialist's expenses for the time he was petitioning for it.  That your memorialist did not get any other settlement than a sertificate from the author that there is owe to your memorialist 2024 spania dollars, that your memorialist is now at Wyoming detached of everything he therefore most humbly begs your excellency will take his care in considering and send him a recommendation on Congress so that your memorialist may get some money and a proper settlement for his depredation and __________               and your memorialist is duty bound shall ever pray."

                                                            John P. Schott Capt.

 

Wyoming   July 18th, 1781 2

 

 

             July 29, 1781  Gen. John Sullivan sends a letter to Washington in behalf of Capt. Selin with regards to Selin's petition for a captaincy in Col. Moses Hazen's Regiment. The letter states:  "Dear General,  I have the honor to recommend to Your Excellencys notice the bearer Capt. Selin who is Soliciting a Captaincy in Hazens Regiment.  As he has Served with me I take the Liberty of assuring your Excellency that he is truly a Deserving officer and will do honor to the appointment if conferred upon him." 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1782

 

            In January 1, 1782  Lt. Col. Edward Anthill, then commanding Hazen's 2nd Canadian Regiment reforms the regiment as follows from the Regimental Orders:

           

            "It being highly necessary for the Regularity of the Accounts as well as the mustering of the Regiment that the same be arranged; it will from this day and until further orders, be formed into eight companies, in the following order, viz:--

"1st. Satterlee's, Hughes's, and Duncan's.______Lieut.s Anderson and Bugbee.

"2nd. Munson's, McConnel's and Popham's.____Lieut.s Dionne and Lee.

"3rd. Olivie's___Lieut. Mooers and Ens.Gosselin.

"4th. Lloyd's, late Gilbert's and White's.____Lieut. Torrey.

"5th. Pry's and late Heron's._____Lieut. Cady.

"6th. Gosselin's 390________Lieut. Teriole and Ens. Boileau.

"7th. Lee's and Carlile's.______Lieut. Stuart.

"8th. Selin's and Liebert's______Lieut. Gilmant and Ens. McPherson.

            "The Regiment will do Duty, Parade, and be returned and mustered agreeable to this arrangement; and all accounts of arms, ammunition, clothing, & etc. to be regularly kept by the commanding officers of Companies respectively."

/signed/ Edwd. Antill Lt. Col. Commander1
(These orders were to cause a problem which we will read about later. A complaint will be lodged with General Washington by a Captain Duncan concerning point of rank in Hazen's Regiment)


            Dec. 9, 1782
in a letter from George Washington to Moses Hazen, he mentions a date of January 1781 for Selin's appointment to command a company in Moses Hazen's Regiment  (2nd Canadian ). 2

 

 

 

                  Dec 26th, 1782

                   General  Moses Hazen writes to General Washington to respond to an earlier letter written to him by George Washington with reference to a complaint being lodged by Captain Duncan ( of Hazen's 2nd Canadian Regiment) due to a position of rank. Hazen sent this compilation of Regimental orders of  what had transpired in the 2nd Canadian Regiment with regards to reforming the regiment from March of 1781 to January of 1782:

            "The Incorporation of the Companies, as by the orders of the 15th. of July last, is dissolved."

            "Finding still an inconveniency by the number of small Companies they were again incorporated by the Recommendation of the Honourable Major Genl. Baron Stuben, by an order as follows, viz---                                     
                                                                                                                        "March 15, 1781.

"The Companies are to be embodied and formed agreeable to the Orders of the "15th.  of July 1780, with the following alterations only, viz:

            "Capt. Olivie's Company to remain as it is.

            "Capt. Liebert's and Paulint's.

            "Capt. Hughes's to be joined to Satterlee's.

            "Capt.s Munson's, Gilbert's and Pry's.

            "Capt.s Carlile's, Popham's, and the late McConnel's.

            "Capt.s Lloyd's, late Heron's and Duncan's.

            "Capt.s White's and Lee's.

            "Capt. Gosselin's to remain by itself.

            "Capt. Selin's to make the 9th.  Company, which is to do duty with "the Regiment."

            Under which Regulation we served the Campaign of 1781.

            On the first of January 1782 Lieut. Col. Antill, by my approbation, issued the order now complained of; herein recited:---"

                                                                                                            "January 1, 1782.

            "It being highly necessary for the Regularity of the Accounts as well as the mustering of the Regiment that the same be arranged; it will from this day and until further orders, be formed into eight companies, in the following order, viz:--

"1st. Satterlee's, Hughes's, and Duncan's.______Lieut.s Anderson and Bugbee.

"2nd. Munson's, McConnel's and Popham's.____Lieut.s Dionne and Lee.

"3rd. Olivie's___Lieut. Mooers and Ens.Gosselin.

"4th. Lloyd's, late Gilbert's and White's.____Lieut. Torrey.

"5th. Pry's and late Heron's._____Lieut. Cady.

"6th. Gosselin's 390________Lieut. Teriole and Ens. Boileau.

"7th. Lee's and Carlile's.______Lieut. Stuart.

"8th. Selin's and Liebert's______Lieut. Gilmant and Ens. McPherson.

            "The Regiment will do Duty, Parade, and be returned and mustered agreeable to this arrangement; and all accounts of arms, ammunition, clothing, & etc. to be regularly kept by the commanding officers of Companies respectively."

            "Which Regulation we have since observed to the entire satisfaction of every officer in the Regiment, except the Complainant Capt. Duncan, and his Patron Major Reid.

            It appears by your Excellency's letter that Capt. Duncan has not fairly stated the subject of his complaint, as he says Captains  Gosselin, Selin and Lee are  younger officers than himself; all of whom he perfectly knows will dispute rank with him. Capt. Gosselin was a Captain in my Regiment before Duncan was in service.  Capt. Selin was a Captain in the Army at a time Duncan was a Lieutenant:  They both command their own Companies, chiefly enlisted by themselves.  Gosselin is a Canadian and commands a Canadian company: Selin a German; his Company is chiefly composed of Germans that do not understand the English language.  The want of the French and German language would render Capt. Duncan unfit to command either of those companies."3  ( We see here that Hazen referes to Selin as German. We know he is of Swiss descent, most likely Swiss-French since much of his 1770's personal correspondence is written in French. However being Swiss, German speech would be easily acquired or possibly he was fluent in French, German and English which was probably the case. His ability to speak in different languages was possibly why he so successfully recruited his original Company so quickly in 1777 and no doubt helped him throughout his military career seeing that his commands almost always had a good portion of German and French soldiers.)

 

 

 

 

 

1783

            March 3, 1783 George Washington's General Orders state;  "....German recruits now under orders of Capt. Selin to be attached to the 2d and 3d Regt. of Artillery of General Knox."  1

           

1784

            February 24, 1784.

            "The Committee, consisting of Mr. Hugh Williamson, Mr. James Monroe and Mr. David Howell, to whom was referred a memorial of Major Anthony Selin who represented that he is a foreign officer and prays for such assistance as has been afforded to other foreign officers submit the following resolve

            That the instruction of the 22nd. Jany. last to the Superintendant of Finance in favour of certain foreign officers be considered by him as extending and it is hereby extended to all foreigners Creditors of the United States who have lately been officers in the armies of the U. S. having commissions in the service of any foreign prince: Major Anthony Selin late of General Hazen's regiment.

            On motion of Mr. [John] Beatty, seconded by Mr. [Jacob] Read,

Resolved, That the instruction of the 22 of January last, to the Superintendant of finance, in favour of certain foreign officers, be considered by him as extending, and it is hereby extended to Major Anthony Selin, late of General Hazen's regiment." 1

           

           

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Antoni Selin's Military Time Line

 

            Based on our research, Antoni Selin's  Service in American Revolutionary War may be broken down to the following:

 

            December 1776 Commissioned as an Officer in the American Army
           

            Winter to early Spring 1777  Recruits  Company #2  of  Ottendorff's Corps which he will command.
           
April 1777  Arrives with his Company in Bound Brook, NJ. There they will stay until the early Summer of 1777 after the Battle of Short Hills. Charles Armand is now in charge of  the "Late" Ottendorff's Corps ( Ottendorff  has deserted). John Paul Schott, Commander of Company #3 of this Corps, has been taken Prisoner. Charles Armand begins recruiting for what is to be his new Partisan Corps with the base being what is now left of the Late Ottendorff's Corps. It appears that Antoni Selin along with some of the other original officers maintain the "base" Corps during Armand's absences.
           
Fall of 1777   It appears Antoni Selin maintains this command  of the Old Corps now that Captain Bauer retires, Captain Dreisback is Court Martialed and removed from command. Captain Schott is a prisoner and Henry Bedkin leaves the Corps for another command. This Corps in now recognized as Armand's Corps. Armand's early recruiting seems to be directed toward Cavalry. Selin appears to maintain the "foot"  possibly along with some newly recruited officers. He serves in the Philadelphia Campaigns, Brandywine, Germantown et al, with Armand as his superior.

            Winter 1777 to Spring 1778  Winters at Valley forge with the Corps.
           
June of 1778  Battle of Monmouth.
           
August 1778  Appears to be in command  of Armand's Corps of Foot in his absence.
           
Fall of 1778  Is reunited with Captain Schott ( who holds an earlier commission) and  forms the joint Command  often referred to Schott's Corps. This Independent Corps is removed from Armands's Corps because of disputes of Rank. However they still work in close proximity.
           
Winter of 1778  Selin commands one of the outposts on the New York frontier of the "Minisinks". Schott's commands another nearby.
           
Spring of 1779 Captain Selin commands Schott's  Independent Corps and marches them to Wyoming, PA while Captain Schott goes to Philadelphia for supplies. They are assembling for the Sullivan-Clinton Campaign.
           
June 1779  Captain Selin commands the "Different Corps" which are assembled in Wyoming, to bring up river,  boats and supplies to Wyoming in preparation for the campaign.
           
August - September 1779 Appears to command Schott's Corps ( in Schott's absence) as Selin's Independent Rifle Company together with a Corps of Pioneers clearing the path for Sullivan's march.
           
Late Fall 1779- Spring 1780  Selin now back in the Wyoming settlement with Schott protecting this frontier area. The Corps appears to be split and working separetly most likey because of a dispute in rank between Selin and Schott.

           

            January of 1781  Commands a Company in General Hazen's 2nd Canadian Regiment.
He holds this position until the end of hostilities. He retires with the rank of Major.

Epilogue

 

 

            The following contains some of our opinions  and findings based on material contained in this manuscript and the associated reference materials cited.

 

            Throughout the war, George Washington appears to be somewhat well acquainted with Captain Schott possibly because when he was commissioned in September 1776  he reported directly to him before starting to raise a company. A report from the Board of War read in the Continental Congress on September 6th 1776  stated that he should report directly to General Washington to serve his immediate needs. This also can be because Schott wrote to Washington quite often concerning his problems, needs not to mention his memorials.

            On the other hand George Washington does not seem to have been as familiar with Captain Selin. Selin very rarely wrote Washington and when he did it wasn't about problems, wants or needs. It does appear that Antoni Selin may have been friends with Nicholas Ottendorf because it appears that  both of them were directly involved in raising the original Ottendorf's Corps in late winter and spring of 1777 and petitioning Congress for money for this cause, the money being charged to Ottendorf's account.

 

            Captain Antoni Selin: It is almost without doubt that Captain Selin's Company was the first part of Ottendorf's Corps to arrive in Bound Brook, NJ in April of 1777 since the other companies including Ottendorf's own, were still recruiting and trying to fill their quotas. It appears that Schott's Company may have been in Lancaster, PA at this time.

            It is our opinion that after the Battle of Short Hills, NJ, June 1777, Captain Selin's Company or Corps consisted of his original company, a part of Ottendorf's own Company and what was left of Schott's & Bauer's. When Schott was released in the fall of  '78 he thought he would get his old command back but found it was held by Selin. Possibly due to his commission date which was three months earlier than Selin's, seniority won out and he got full command of the Company that Selin had, which of course had many of Schott's original men.  In September of 1778, Armand wanted them attached to his "New Corps" most likely because he still didn't fill his quota of men from his recruiting in the New England area. Schott, (as well as, we believe, Selin) did not want to serve under Armand again because of being overlooked in rank in favor of officers Armand recruited himself. Also a dispute of rank, no doubt, was brewing between Selin and Schott during the fall of 1778 thru spring 1781 at which time Selin and his men finally joined Hazen's Regiment.

 

            Nicholas De Ottendorf: He has posed the most unanswered questions for us. The complicated nature of his Corps arrangement for one is still very hard to understand. Initially Congress requested him to form a Corps of  3 Independent Companies consisting of his own 60 man Company and two additional Companies of 45 privates each but there is documentation to suggest that upwards of 5 companies were involved by June of 1777. Ottendorf's own Company, a Company #1 Commanded by Captain Dreisback, a Company #2 Commanded by Captain Selin, a Company #3 Commanded by Captain Schott and a Company # 4 Commanded by Captain Bauer. Ottendorf would be Major of the collected body of Companies but he would act as "Captain" of his own Company. Complicated indeed especially when it appears that the individual companies were fielded as they completed their recruitment being deployed independently of the main Corps as the term suggest. (This, then could explain the actions of John Paul Schott early in 1777 when it appears he had know affiliation with the Corps.)

           

            What happened to Ottendorf  to make Washington so angry? We have found at least three instances in the Journals of the Continental Congress between Dec. 1776 and May of 1777 that Congress resolves to give  Ottendorf  money to raise troops for his corps, plus once more for Selin to raise troops for Ottendorf's Corps (See Feb. 14, 1777 entry). The last mention of him in Congress on May 10th, 1777 is such: "Resolved , That there should be advanced to Major Ottendorf, for the use of his corps, the sum of 500 dollars; he to be accountable:"  We do not hear from Ottendorf again until Heath writes Washington in 1778  that Ottendorf was sorry for leaving and wants to return to the Army. His borrowing money from Congress along with him leaving his command without notice obviously makes a good case for Washington's position in regards to Ottendorf.

            There is a letter in the Clinton Collection from 1781 that could implicate  Ottendorf as a spy for the British. We have read this letter but are not sure of what to make of it. Supposedly Ottendorf joined the British near the end of the war but we have not found much documentation as of yet in reference to this.

            Charles Armand: It is interesting to note that Charles Armand may have had some resentment for having to take the command of Ottendorf's Corps when Ottendorf disappears from the scene instead of being able to recruit a New Corps of his own from the start. This is most notable when after the Battle of Short Hills, NJ in June of 1777 he seems to leave his command from time to time to try to recruit ( a new corps!) men of his choosing.

            It appears that Captain Selin and possibly the remaining Captains ( Dreisback -(Friesback)  Bedkin and Bauer) maintains this original Corps of 1777 which has been shattered after the actions of Short Hills during the times that Armand is away. By the Fall of 1777 it appears that this is solely in Captain Selin's hands and remains this way until the Fall of 1778 when Captain Schott returns from being a prisoner and Col. Armand fulfills his recruitment of what will be his new Corps.

 

            Captain John Paul Schott: After researching the records  we have doubts  and cannot say with certainty that John Paul Schott was in  Ottendorf's Corps prior to May 1777 even though older research papers would have us believe this. We found reference to John Paul Schott (no mention of rank or command)  on Sept. 5, 1776 in the journals of The Continental Congress as having his petition read.) (This petition from John Paul Schott, is in the Papers  of the Continental Congress, No. 42, VII, folio 15)

                  It  appears that even though Schott's original Independent Company was to be attached to Ottendorf's Corps in the Spring of 1777 they were acting independently as to getting supplies and being garrisoned. Actually it seems like this may have been the case with Selin's Company as well since they appear to be fully recruited and on their way to the field by April 4 1777 However Selin's Company appears to maintain it's affiliation with the parent corps of Ottendorf (possibly because of their friendship?) whereas this doesn't appear to be the same from Schott. Possibly because he holds the earliest commission of everyone involved and wants to maintain his independent status.

                  On May 3, 1777 in congress there is mention of "Captain John Paul Shott's Independent Company" and conversely on this same date Congress mentions "Captain Selim's company, of Major Ottendorf's Corps". From this we don't think they are affiliated yet.       

            On the other hand if we take into account the General Orders of George Washington of April 4, 1777  and Schott's letter to George Washington March 24, 1777, it could be possible that the Companies were so "independent" that they had no affiliations with each other, except for the auspices of falling under the collective "Corps de Ottendorf "as they seem to be split and sent where ever they were needed and acted as separate small units at some points.

            An interesting item of "speculation" arises from the possibility that Captain Schott left Sullivan's Expedition early on into the march. We read that he was given "permission to ride". Was this due to ill health or injury (or did he need an excuse to come back to the Wyoming settlement due to his fondness for a young lady, Naomi Sill, who would, the following year, become his bride?) ©1999-2007  J.W.Filipski & Steve Collward

Footnotes:

 

1776:

1.)  Journals of the Continental Congress, Friday, Sept. 6,, 1776, pg. 740.

2.) Ibid., Friday, November 8, 9, 1776.

3.) Ibid., Thurday, December 5, 1776.

4.) Ibid., Tuesday, December 10, 1776, pp. 1021, 1022.

 

1777:

1.)  Letters of George Washington, Washington to Capt. Schott, January 31, 1777

John C. Fitzpatrick's Writings of George Washington, University of Va., GW to Capt. John Paul Schott, January 31, 1777. From a photostat of the original, furnished by Mr. Hubert M. Schott, of Morristown, N.J.,

 

2.)  Journals of The Continental Congress   February 14, 1777;   500 dollars be advanced to Antonie Selin toward raising Major Ottendorff's Corps and charged to Ottendorff's account.

 

3.) Letters of George Washington, George Washington's General Orders  April, 4 1777

Detachment under the command of Selin to hold themselves in readiness to march/ will receive orders from General St. Clair

 

4.)  The Letters of George Washington, Schott to Washington, March 23, 1777 "that I apply for money arms and plankits"

 

5.) George Washington Papers ,Library Of Congress: George Washington to Continental Congress War Board, April 17, 1777  List of Officers of the 16 additional Battalions

 

6.) Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789

 

7.) Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789

 

8.) Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789

 

9.) The Letters of George Washington, General Orders April 4, 1777

 

10.) Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789

 

11.) George Washington Papers ,Library Of Congress: George Washington to Continental Congress War Board, April 17, 1777  List of Officers of the 16 additional Battalions


12.) New York State Library Manuscripts and Special Collections, New York State Library, Albany, NY 12230. (United States. Continental Army. Return of troops commanded by Major Nicola Ottendorff, 1777 April 24. 1 page. Shelving    control numbers: 914 & 915 Notes and Summaries: Return of the independent corps commanded by Major Nicola Ottendorff. Includes listing of troops received from Captain Schot's Independent Company by order of General Philip Schuyler. Preferred Citation: Return of troops commanded by Major Nicola Ottendorff, 1777 April 24. Immediate Source of Acquisition: Lossing sale Purchase 19120822 91 Return of troops commanded by Major Nicola Ottendorff, 1777 April 24. Action: catalogued 19890207 mr/mr Return of troops commanded by Major Nicola Ottendorff, 1777 April 24. Physical location: MSS 11 Return of troops commanded by Major Nicola Ottendorff, 1777 April 24).

 

13.) Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789

 

14.) Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789

 

 

 

15.)  The Letters of George Washington, Washington to Armand, May 19, 1777

 

16.) Letters of George Washington, Washington to Armand June 11, 1777

"to take command of Ottendorff's corps and complete the Corps to full Regiment and you will be under the immediate command of General Lincoln"

 

17.) The Letters of George Washington, General Orders July 4, 1777

 

18.) The Letters of George Washington, Richard Peters to George Washington: war Office July 10, 1777

 

19.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to Continental Congress, July 16, 1777

 

20.) The Letters of George Washington, General Orders, Aug 7, 1777

 

21.) The Letters of George Washington, General Orders Aug. 20, 1777

 

22.) The Letters of George Washington, , George Washington to William Maxwell Sept 1, 1777

 

23.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to William Maxwell Sept 2, 1777

 

24.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to Charles Armand, Sept 2, 1777

 

25.) Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789

 

 

Short Hills Footnotes

1: Tallmadge, Benjamin. Memoir, p.26

2:  New Jersey Archives 2nd. Ser. 1777, p.415

3:  Ibid

4:  Meunchausen, "Journal" at General Howe's Side p.19

5:  Montresor, Capt. John, Journal, Collections of the New York Historical Society, 1881

6: Meunchausen, p.19

7: Letter of Lewis Willis to Charles Yates, 10 July 1777

8: Armand to Washington, 1781, Letters, NYHS Collection, Ser. VII, p. 365

9: Ewing, George. Diary, p. 17-19

10:  Grant, William. Narrative, NY col. manuscripts p.732

11: André, John. Journal, p.42-8

12:  Buttner, Johann Carl. Narrative, Princeton Univ. Library. Rare book section 1839. p.44
13:  Creswell, Journal. p. 129

 

 

1778:

1.) The Letters of George Washington, General Orders March 23, 1778

 

2.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to Charles Armand March 25, 1778

 

3.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to Alexander McDougall March 27, 1778

 

4.) Report to the Board of War  May 17, 1778: Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789

 

5.) The Letters of George Washington, George washington to Marquis de Lafayette July 3, 1778

 

6.) The Letters of George Washington, General Heath to George Washington July 15, 1778 and George Washington to General Heathe August 14, 1778

 

7.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to Col. William Malcom July 27, 1778

 

8.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to Col. William Malcom, August 3 1778

 

9.) The Letters of George Washington: Varrick Transcripts, "A Report of the Commissioned Officers Belonging to the Corps commanded lately by Col. Armand at present commanded by Capt. Antoni Selin" Image in the archives

 

10.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to Continental Congress, August 31, 1778

 

11.) The Letters of George Washington, "A Return of the Independent Corps of Cavallerie and Foot commanded by Collonel Armand, Granwitch, Sept 3,1778"

 

12.) Letters of Col. Armand: Armand to Washington, Nov. 9, 1778, Collections of the New York Historical Society, 1878, pp. 303-304

 

13.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to Continental Congress Novovember 16 1778

 

14.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to Philip J. Schuyler November 16, 1778

 

 

15.)  Letters of Col. Armand: Armand to Washington, Nov. 17, 1778, Collections of the New York Historical Society, 1878pp. 305-306


16.)  The Letters of George Washington, (To Edward Hand, Nov. 20, 1778)

 

17.)  The Letters of George Washington, (To Count Casimir Pulaski, Nov. 24, 1778)

 

18.) The Letters of George Washington, George Washington to Pulaski's Corps Commanding Officer, December 16, 1778

 

19.) Morristown National Historical Park, Lloyd W. Smith Collection.

 

20.) Letter from Antoni Selin to Edward Hand, Dec. 25, 1778 (From the Pennsylvania State Archives, MG-66, Harrisburg, Pa.)

 

1779:

 

1.)  Adj. Generals Office (Nat. Archives) Jacket 87 Pa. (Located in the A.H.Wright Papers, Cornell University-Ithaca, NY)

 

2.) The Letters of George Washington

 

3.)  The Letters of George Washington, Washington to Hand, February, 7, 1779

 

4.)  The Letters of George Washington, Washington to Count Pulaski, February 8, 1779

 

5.) Adj. Generals Office (Nat. Archives) Jacket 87 Pa. (Located in the A.H. Wright Papers, Carl A. Kroch Library, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY)

 

6.) Letter from Antoni Selin to Edward Hand, March 9, 1779 (From the Pennsylvania State Archives, MG-66, Harrisburg, Pa.

 

7.) Letter from John P. Schott to Edward Hand, March 12, 1779 (From the Pennsylvania State Archives, MG-66, Harrisburg, Pa.

 

8.) Letter from Antoni Selin to Edward Hand, March 14, 1779. (From the Darlington Library, University of Pittsburg, Pittsburg, Pa.)

 

9.)  The Letters of George Washington, Edward Hand to Washington, March 20, 1779

 

10.) Adj. Generals Office (Nat. Archives) Jacket 87 Pa. (Located in the A.H. Wright Papers, Carl A. Kroch Library, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY)

 

11.) The Letters of George Washington, Washington to Gen. Edward Hand, March 24, 1779.

 

12.) From  the National Archives M247, R192, I173, V1, Pg. 301

13.) Pa. Historical Association Vol. 61, No. 1, 1/94

 

14) Lloyd W. Smith Collection, Morristown National Historical Park.

 

15.) The Letters of George Washington, Washington to Edward Hand, April 1, 1779

 

16.) The Letters of George Washington, Washington toe Zebulon Butler, April 1, 1779

 

17.) The Letters of George Washington, Washington to Edward Hand, April 4, 1779

 

18.) The Letters of George Washington, Washington to The Board of War, April 4, 1779

 

19.) Varrick Transcripts: Letters of George Washington, Washington to Schott April 4, 1779 - Image in the archives- Schott sent to Philadelphia to procure arms And also  Washington to General Hand April 4, 1779 In this letter states that Selin marches Schott's Company to Wyoming.

 

20.) The A.H. Wright Papers, Carl A. Kroch Library, Cornell University, Ithatca, NY

 

21.) The Letters of George Washington, Edward Hand to Washington, May 12, 1779

 

22.) The Letters of George Washington, Washington to Edward Hand, May 31, 1779

 

23.) Adj. Generals Office (Nat. Archives) Jacket 87 Pa. (Located in the A.H. Wright Papers, Carl A. Kroch Library, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY)

 

24.) Miscellaneous Numberd Records ( the Manuscript file) in the War Department Collection of Revolutionary War Records 1775-1790, Record group 93, Natiional Archives Microfilm Publication M859,Reel 75, ItemNo. 22023

 

25.) National Archives M853, r4, V27

 

26.)National Archives Muster Rolls, Reel 84, Pennsylvanis Miscellaneous Units

 

 

27.)Morristown National Historical Park, Lloyd W. Smith Collection.

 

28.) The Letters of George Washington, Washington to Charles Armand -Tuffin...,

June 28, 1779

 

29.) The Letters of George Washington, Washington to Charles Armand -Tuffin...,

July 5, 1779

 

30.) Collward, Steven, Battle of Chumung Manuscript 2007: online

 

31.) The Letters of George Washington, Edward Hand to Washington, July 13, 1779

 

 

32.)  The Letters of George Washington,  West Point  Aug 14, 1779

 

33.) Journals of the Military Expedition of Maj.General John Sullivan 1779, pg. 264

 

 

 

34.) Early American Orderly Books, 1748-1817, Collections of the New York Historical Society (Microfilm Edition) [Woodbridge, 1977]]Order book, Pennsylvania and New York, July 27, 1779-September 28, 1779, reel 9, Item 93.

 

35.) Order Book of Lieut. Col. Francis Barber, Notes form Collections of Tioga Point Museum on the Sullivan Expedition of 1779... , Louise Welles Murray, Ed., Athens, Pa.

(1929/1975) Tioga Point Museum, pp. 79, 83, 87.

 

36.)  The Letters of George Washington, General Orders  Aug 31, 1779

 

37.) Orderly Books of the Fourth New York Regiment..., Almon Lauber, Ed. (Albany: University of the State of New York, 1932, pg. 87

 

38.) Orderly Books of the Fourth New York Regiment...,  Almon Lauber, Ed., (Albany:   University of the State of New York, 1932) p.89.

 

39.)  The Pennsylvania Gazette, November 17, 1779 (item #64914)

 

40.)  Pennsylvania Archives, I Series: 8, pp.24,25

 

41.) Journals of the Military Expedition of Maj. General John Sullivan 1779, Auburn, NY, 1887, (Journal of Lt. John Jenkins, page 177)

 

1780:

 

1.) Charles Miner, History of Wyoming, 1845, pg. 83

 

2)  The Letters of George Washington,  Washington to Armand Feb. 6, 1780  " the infantry commanded by Selin is on the frontier and can not be easily relieved". " Do not recommend a reunion due to the past circumstances"

Also see   Letters of George Washington,  General Orders Feb 6, 1780  "Congress has formed Armand's Corps into a Legionary Corps"

 

3.) The Letters of George Washington; GW to War Board, Morristown  Feb 15, 1780

 

4.) Miscellaneous Numberd Records ( the Manuscript file) in the War Department Collection of Revolutionary War Records 1775-1790, Reel 94, entry 27411

 

5) Pennsylvania Archives, 1780, pp. 153, 162.

 

6.) Ibid., pg. 171.

 

7.)  The Letters of George Washington,  Washington to the Board of War  April 27, 1780

8.)   The Letters of George Washington. Zebulon Butler to Gen'l. Washington May 15 1780

 

9.)   The Letters of George Washington, Captain Schott to Gen'l Washington July 10 1780

 

10.) Vols 6-8 of the Wyoming Historical Record  pp. 73

 

1781:

 

1.) Journals of the Continental Congress, Feb. 9, 1781 (No. 78, XXI, folio 5)

 

2.) Letters of George Washington, Captain Schott to General Washington July 18th 1781

3.) Letters and Papers of Major-General John Sullivan, vol. 3, pg. 338.

 

1782:

1.) The Letters of George Washington,  Lt. Col. Edward Antill January 1,1782-Regimental Orders ( Hazen's Regt.)

 

2.)  The Letters of George Washington, Washington to Moses Hazen, Dec.  9,  1782

 

3.) Letters of George Washington, Moses Hazen to General Washington  Dec. 26th 1782

 

1783:

 

1.)  The Letters of George Washington,  General Orders,  March 3, 1783

 

1784:

1.) Journals of Continental Congress 1774-1789

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Revision 11-16-07 - for Binding