I am glad that Landais “rises in your Esteem”— that “other Captains are convincd he is Master of his Business which with his agreable Manners & Disposition forcd Conviction of the Judiciousness of his Appointment.” I fancy now that I shall soon be dischargd the shameful Imputation of having been “his chiefe Patron here.” I have a particular Reason now to urge that every possible Exertion may be made to get his and all the other Ships manned. Last Evening a Letter from Governor Trumbull was read in the Committee, strongly recommending a Captain for the Ships at Norwich, who, added to great Qualifications, can readily get Men for her. I mentioned Manly as having the Character of a brave and very popular officer, and read those Parts of your last Letter to me which related to him. I am convincd that he need not impute his being overlookd to any other Cause than the Decree of the Court Martial which acquitted him with Honor.
The Rhode Island Expedition is at Length finishd. Our Cause is not dishonord though we did not succeed to our Wishes. Congress has approvd the Retreat—thankd Gen1 Sullivan & his brave Troops and applauded the patriotick Exertions of New England. Major Gen1 Hancock was unluckily at Boston & missed the Laurel! In my opinion it is in a great Degree impolitick at this Juncture to suffer an Odium to be cast on the Count D’Estaing. If there should be a Disposition to do it I am perswaded Men of Discretion & Influence will check it. The Tories will try their utmost to discredit our new Alliance. And he who not long ago expressd his Opinion that “a Connection with France will ruin America” will not fail to promote a Jealousy if he can thereby establish his Popularity. Such a Man should be critically watchd on this Occasion. Adieu my Friend.