On this date in 1779, Lieutenant General Frederick Haldimand, commanding the Northern , orders two Loyalists, Lieutenants Thomas and William Fraser of McAlpin’s Corps of Royalists, down into New York from Canada to gather intelligence. But remember: no scalps… “(Copy)
Quebec the 1st February 1779
The Two Messrs Frasers being inclined to undertake a Scouting Party to procure Intelligence, I adress them first to you for Such Instruction as you shall think proper to give them on the occasion, and I beg that they may have any assistance they may want from You.
I take this Opportunity of intimating to You, that the Roads becoming now practicable, I hope you will take care to Employ from time to time trusty People to go out by different Roads and without knowledge of one another. But I must Caution You against Scalps, the object being only Intelligence.
I am &ca.
(Signed) F[rederick] H[aldimand]
Sir John Johnson
This great bit of information comes from Todd Braisted. Braisted operates the On-Line Institute for Advanced Loyalist Studies. The Saratoga area had many loyalist. The Daniel McAlpin who commanded McAplin’s Corp was from Stillwater in 1779 which was much bigger then today. Today, we would say he lived in Malta by Saratoga Lake.
Source: Great Britain, British Library, Additional Manuscripts, No. 21819, folio 5.