General George Washington to the Massachusetts General Assembly:
The distresses of our prisoners in the hands of the enemy give me much concern; their sufferings, by all accounts, are very great. Ever since a cartel was settled between General Howe and myself, I have been endeavouring to effect an exchange as far as circumstances would admit of; but my attempts on this head have been attended with but little success. For the prisoners belonging to the British Army, and who have been sent in from Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Maryland, General Howe, or rather his Commissary, has undertaken, of his mere motion, and contrary to my express requisition, to return a number belonging to us who were not called for, and whose releasement should have been postponed till after that of many others. I have wrote to General Howe upon the subject, and presume in future that none will be sent out but those who are named by me.