From William Duer1
New York, January 2, 179[6.]2 “Will you pardon me, my dear Sir, in requesting of you if you can make it Convenient, a second Loan of Fifty Dollars in the Course Ten Days. I shall be able to return it to you, and first Fifty you was kind Enough lend me.”3
ALS, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress.
1. Duer, a prominent New York City businessman and speculator, had served as Assistant to the Secretary of the Treasury from September, 1789, to late March or early April, 1790. He was governor of the Society for Establishing Useful Manufactures from its inception in 1791 until the collapse of his financial affairs in 1792. On March 23, 1792, Duer was imprisoned for debt, and except for a short period in 1797 when he was released at H’s intercession, he remained in prison until his death on May 7, 1799.
2. Duer mistakenly dated this letter “1795.” At the bottom of the letter H wrote: “ought to be 1796 sent a Check upon Off of D & Deposit AH.”
3. The following entry for January 2, 1796, appears in H’s Cash Book, 1795–1804: “William Duer Dr. to Cash for this sum lent him some time since 50—for this sum lent this day note of this day 50—” (AD, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress).