Image courtesy of Colonial National Historical Park, Yorktown.

Monday, January 25, 2021

Meeting Notes: November 18, 2020

Pre-Guest Speaker Notes:

ARRT-R’s next meeting is scheduled for 1/27/21 at 6:30 p.m.  This is a zoom meeting!  Sign in

details will be provided in the January newsletter.  Thanks again to Peggy Watson for allowing us to utilize the Osher network.

ARRT-R’s featured speaker on 1/27/21 will be Ed Lengel.  Mr. Lengel will be speaking on “New Thoughts on Valley Forge”.

Mr. Lengel is a historian in residence at Colonial Williamsburg, and previously served as Chief Historian of The White House Historical Association.  Before that, Lengel was Editor-in-Chief of The Papers of George Washington and Professor at the University of Virginia.

Mr. Lengel is the author most recently of Never In Finer Company: The Men of the Great War’s Lost Battalion. He is also author of Thunder and Flames: Americans in the Crucible of Combat, 1917-1918 (2015), To Conquer Hell: The Meuse-Argonne, 1918 (2008), and This Glorious Struggle: George Washington's Revolutionary War letters (2007). His book General George Washington: A Military Life was a finalist for the 2006 George Washington Book Prize.


Guest Speaker – Jeff Dacus – “Washington’s Family: The Aides and Secretaries Who helped Him Through the War”

 Jeff Dacus is a retired schoolteacher who taught U.S. history for 35 years and also taught as an adjunct professor at the University of Portland.  A retired Marine tanker, he volunteers with local veterans groups and is a speaker at historical events.  A member of the Company of Military Historians, he has written numerous articles in the Journal of the Company of Military Historians, Marine Corps Tanker’s Association Newsletter, as well as Leatherneck and Armor Magazines.  He is the winner of the 2020 General Roy S. Geiger Award given to the author of the best article in the field of Marine Corps Aviation.  His first book is The Fighting Corsairs: The Men of the Marine Fighting Squadron 215.

 Duties of an aide de camp/secretary:

 “It is unnecessary for me to observe to you, the multiplicity of business I am involved in – the number of Letters, Orders & Instruction’s I have to write – with many other matters which call loudly for Aids that are ready Pen-men

--Washington to Lee

During the war 32 men served Washington as Aides.  Aides were appointed by Congress.

 Washington’s biggest need was assistance with correspondence.

 Of the men who served Washington 9 had previous combat experience.  After the war, 17 served in government jobs.

 Washington did not speak a foreign language.  His Aides assisted him in communicating with the French army and foreign officials

Tench Tilghman was Washington’s favorite aide.  He was from Maryland and served as an aide for 4 years without leave or salary.

The Common Background of Washington’s Aides:

11 from Virginia

5 from Massachusetts

4 each from New York and Connecticut

3 each from Maryland and Pennsylvania

1 from South Carolina

1 from France

Only 7 states represented


3 were born in Ireland

1 born in France

1 born in England

1 born in the British West Indies


 2 were Washington’s nephews

 1 was Washington’s stepson   

 Robert Hanson Harrison and George Johnston, Jr. were brothers in law

 John and Jonathan Trumbull were brothers

 William Grayson was James Monroe’s brother    

                --Noah Rogers       

No comments:

Post a Comment