George Washington Papers

[Diary entry: 14 November 1788]

Friday 14th. Thermometer at 44 in the Morning—[ ] at Noon and 56 at Night. Wind Southerly in the forenoon, and thro’ the day till evening, when it shifted to No. Wt. All the forenoon was very cloudy with great appearances of rain—some of which in a sprinkle or two, fell about 11 Oclock—afternoon clear.

Mr. Wilming—the German Gentleman above mentioned having offered to engage a Gardener for me and to send him in a ship from Bremen; I requested that it might not exceed the following conditions for him and his Wife (if he brings one)—viz.—Ten pounds sterling for the 1st. year—Eleven for the 2d.—Twelve for the 3d. and so on, a pound encrease, till the sum should amt. to £15. beyond which not to go. That he would be found a comfortable House, or room in one, with bedding, victuals & drink; but no clothes; these for self and wife to be provided at his own expence—That he is to be a compleat Kitchen Gardener with a competent knowledge of Flowers and a Green House. And that he is to come under Articles and firmly bound. His, or their passages to be on as low terms as it can be obtained—The Wife if one comes is to be a Spinner, dairy Woman—or something of that usefulness.

After Mr. Wilming went away as soon as breakfast was over I rid to all the Plantations.

In the Neck—The sowing of ten Bushels of Winter Barley, East side of field No. 6 between the Corn was just finished (for an experiment)—being delayed till this time for want of the Barley, from Mr. Wayles. The People were employed in digging Potatoes which they wd. finish doing to day. The Plows were, some breaking up No. 8 and others plowing in Rye the sowing of which would be compleated to morrow.

At Muddy hole—the hands were getting up Mud. Plows at D. Run.

At Dogue run—they were cleaning a bed of Wheat which had been tread out yesterday; & compleating the Potatoe Cellar.

At Frenchs—The People were repairing the Fences around field No. 5. The Plows were at the Ferry.

At the Ferry 6 plows were at Work—the People digging Potatoes.

Mr. Lear finished to day what was left undone yesterday of the Survey of the Roads.

Doctr. Logan and Lady of Philaa. and a Monsr. [ ] of Lyons in France came here to dinner and went away afterwards.

Henrich Wilmans sent a gardener named John Christian Ehlers to GW in the summer of 1789. Ehlers, who was later joined by his wife, began work at the rate of 12 guineas a year and received subsequent raises. GW dismissed him in the fall of 1797 (GW to Wilmans, 12 Oct. 1789, Wilmans to GW, 28 Feb. 1790, and GW to James Anderson, 7 April 1797, DLC:GW; LEDGER B description begins Manuscript Ledger Book 2, 1772-93, in George Washington Papers, Library of Congress. description ends , 313, 353; LEDGER C description begins Manuscript Ledger in Morristown National Historical Park, Morristown, N.J. description ends , 9).

Andrew Wales (c.1737–1799) operated a brewery in Alexandria for many years. Little barley of any kind was grown or sold in the Alexandria area, and Wales as a brewer was the only local person who maintained a supply of it (GW to Thomas Peters, 4 Dec. 1786, NN: Emmet Collection; GW to William Pearce, 23 Mar. 1794, DLC:GW).

Dr. George Logan married Deborah Norris (1761–1839) of Philadelphia 6 Sept. 1781. Granddaughter of a chief justice of Pennsylvania, she obtained an exceptionally good education for a woman of her times largely as a result of a self-directed program of study at home. Her many social connections in the Philadelphia area and her precise and well-informed mind make her Memoir of Dr. George Logan of Stenton (Philadelphia, 1899), written after her husband’s death in 1821, and her extensive annotation of family manuscripts, also undertaken in her later years, valuable sources for historians.

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