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Page 124

WASHINGTON AND THE AMERICAN ARMY
NATHANIEL HAWTHORNE

The Continental Congress which was assembled at Philadelphia was composed of delegates from all the colonies. They had now appointed George Washington of Virginia to be commander-in-chief of all the American armies. He was at that time a member of Congress, but immediately left Philadelphia and began his journey to Massachusetts. On the third of July, 1775, he arrived at Cambridge and took command of the troops which were besieging General Gage.
"Oh, Grandfather," exclaimed Laurence, "it makes my heart throb to think what is coming now. We are to see General Washington himself!"
The children crowded around Grandfather and looked earnestly into his face. Even little Alice opened her sweet blue eyes, with her lips apart, and almost held her breath to listen. Grandfather paused a moment, for he felt as if it might be irreverent to introduce the hallowed shade of Washington into a history where an ancient elbow-chair occupied the most prominent place. However, he determined to proceed with his narrative, and speak of the hero whenever it was needful, but with an unambitious simplicity.
So Grandfather told his auditors that on General Washington's arrival at Cambridge his first care was to reconnoiter the British troops with his spyglass and to examine the condition of his own army. He found that the American

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