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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 3


This foot note contained in document ADMS-06-03-02-0112
1. On 20 Oct. the congress sent McPherson to Cambridge to consult with Gen. Washington. He was the originator, according to a JA Diary entry, of a plan to “take or burn every Man of War, in America.” At the camp, Washington and others who heard the plan found it to be based on unsound principles and prevailed upon McPherson to return to Philadelphia to use his energies on row galleys. The exact nature of the plan remained a secret, for those who were given its details took an oath not to divulge it (JA, Diary and Autobiography , 2:176; JCC , 3:296, 300, 301; Washington, Writings, ed. Fitzpatrick, 4:71–72; Burnett, ed., Letters of Members , 1:238, notes; Clark, Washington's Navy , p. 65–66).