Massachusetts Historical Society
America's oldest historical society, founded 1791.

Back to Washington Taking Command of the Continental Army

Letter from John Sullivan to John Adams, 15 March 1776

Letter from John Sullivan to John Adams, 15 March 1776

Page Viewing Options NOTE

Jump:
overview | small | large | transcription HELP

Request this image

"Preparing for their Departure"
The work of men like Henry Knox and Jeduthan Baldwin looks like it is about to pay off. There is no easy way for the British Army to break through Washington's fortified lines, and after months of privations and shortages, Boston is no longer a comfortable place to sit. When the British wake up one morning to find a large number of Henry Knox's cannon pointed directly at them from Dorchester Heights, hasty action is required to salvage the situation.

Questions to Consider

1. What appears to be the relationship between John Sullivan and John Adams? What was John Sullivan's role in the evacuation of Boston?

2. What tone does Sullivan take in telling about the British flight from Boston?

3. What details does he think it important to record?

Further Exploration

4. What appears to be his opinion of the Congress in the last paragraph? Have you seen this sentiment elsewhere? In which documents?