Whilst I take this opportunity to offer your Excellency my most sincere thanks, for the flattering prospect of being put upon the British Establishment, Candour, a very great anxiety to preserve the good opinion of your Excellency, and a desire to avoid the appearance of future inconsistency; render it necessary, that I should be explicit, with respect to the situation, in which I stand.
My duty as a subject, the happiness which America enjoyed under the British Government, and the miseries to which she would be reduced by an independancy, were the motives that induced me to join the British Army; nor are there any dangers, or difficulties, that I would not cheerfully undergo, to effect a happy restoration.
But, at the same time, that I acted, with the greatest zeal, against my rebellious countrymen, I never forgot that I was an American.
If therefore, sir, Independence should be granted, and the war still continued, I should deem it extremely improper to remain in a situation, obliging me to act either directly or indirectly against America.
If, after this declaration, I can be received by your Excellency, upon the footing offered me by Colonel THOMPSON, I shall think myself highly honored, it being the first wish of my heart ever to serve in the British Army, whilst I can with consistency.
I have the Honor to be,
March 29th 1783
The King can have no occasion for the Service of such Officers, as will not serve against his Enemies.
By order of the Comr. in Chief
Great Britain, Public Record Office, Headquarters Papers of the British Army in America, PRO 30/55/10078.
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