John Louis Ligonier letter book  1752-1760
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Collection Scope and Content Note

The John Louis Ligonier letter book (237 pages) contains the outgoing letters of the field marshal, master general of the ordnance, and commander-in-chief of the British army during the Seven Years War. The volume contains copies of 298 letters, most of which are outgoing items signed by Ligonier with 30 signed by his secretary Richard Cox. Ligonier communicated frequently with various officers and officials in the British military, including Secretary of War William Barrington, Major General Jeffery Amherst, Lord George Beaucleark, Judge Advocate Charles Gould Morgan, Marquis of Granby, Major General Napier, William Pitt, Duke of Richmond, Lord George Sackville, Earl of Shaftesbury, Prince Karl Wilhelm Ferdinand, and James Wolfe. Ligonier's letters deal primarily with personnel and regimental matters, including troop provisioning and payment of troops, problems with recruitment, appointments and promotions, troop movements, troop health, desertions and mutinies, prisoners of war, and orders for officers. While his focus was on the war in America, Ligonier also commanded armies in Scotland and England, and British invasions into France. In addition to the letters, this volume also contains a report on the court martial of George Sackville for failure to follow orders (April 23, 1760), and a document concerning ordnance management, containing instructions for military recordkeeping (pages 85-90). See additional descriptive data for a complete list of the letters.

Along with the letter book are four loose items from Ligonier:

  • March 17, 1752: A bill for accounts of land and sea services, spanning 1746-1752, addressed to Mr. Gashry
  • July 12, 1758: A copied letter from Ligonier to Louis de Brunswick (in French)
  • November 25, 1758: A copied letter from Ligonier to Monsieur La Houliere at Bath, England (in French)
  • Undated: A copied letter from Ligonier (in French)
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