The Conway Cabal


Whatever its interpretation, the Conway Cabal confirmed Washington as the indispensable man that Flexner, and Freeman before him, described. No one put it more concisely than Lafayette, in a letter to Henry Laurens. Speaking as one who loved him, the Frenchman lamented that Washington “does not deserve that neglect, I say more that kind of insult.” He asked the ultimate question: “If you should loose that same man, what would become of the American liberty? Who could take his place? Certainly some body should raise from the earth—for now I do not [know] any body, neither in the south, neither in the north, neither Gates neither Mifflin, neither Greene . . . who could keep an american army for six months.” After reflection, the politicians, the people, and the generals all agreed: There was no one else.