Since Congress can’t impose taxes, there’s no money to spend. Army officers are owed months, even years, of back pay. Desperate and angry, last week some of them set up a secret meeting in Newburgh, New York. There’s talk of defying Congress.
Washington stepped in. He called an official meeting today, and showed up in person to read a letter from Congress.
Squinting, he put on his glasses. “Gentlemen,” he apologized, “I have not only grown gray, but almost blind, in the service of my country.”
His words reminded the officers of what they’d fought for. His men, deeply moved, backed down.