George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Robert Adam, 28 July 1774 [letter not found]

Letter not found: from Robert Adam, 28 July 1774. The letter is described in the Parke-Bernet catalog no. 63, entry 380, 16–17 Nov. 1938: “Introducing a gentleman who wanted to establish a general post office through America, and about a dispute with Colonel Fairfax.”1

1The dispute with George William Fairfax was undoubtedly over the sale of the bloomery. See Samuel Athawes to GW, 8 April 1774, and Matthew Campbell to GW, 26 July 1774, and notes to both documents. Widespread discontent with the Crown’s postal service throughout the colonies had induced William Goddard (1740–1817), owner of the newly established Maryland Journal; and the Baltimore Advertiser, to travel through the colonies promoting his scheme for a new postal service to be controlled by the colonies themselves. Goddard traveled to Williamsburg in late July to promote the scheme which had been frequently discussed during the spring and summer in Purdie and Dixon’s Virginia Gazette (Williamsburg). See especially the newspapers for 14 April, 26 May, 2 June, and 4 and 11 August. For Goddard’s efforts to forge a Continental postal service, see chapter 6 in Miner, William Goddard description begins Ward L. Miner. William Goddard, Newspaperman. Durham, N.C., 1962. description ends . GW left Mount Vernon on this day for Williamsburg. There is no mention in his diaries of a visit from Goddard, but see Cash Accounts, July 1774, and note 14 of that document.

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