George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Thomas Contee, 11 April 1775

From Thomas Contee

George Town [Md.] April 11. 1775


I have Just received your Terms for the Brigantine Farmer and her Apparel, the New Boat Excepted, I agree to your proposal and Capt. Bradstreet will take her in Charge when or as Soon as you please. The Eighty pounds Bills will be paid you on receipt of the Vessel and the Cash you may rely on by or before the first day of May next.1 I am Sir your very humble Servant

Thos Contee

ALS, DLC:GW. The letter is addressed “per favour Capt. [Philip] Curtis.”

Thomas Contee (c.1729–1811) of Prince George’s and Charles counties in Maryland was living in Prince George’s at this time. He was a partner of Fielder Bowie in a firm engaged in the tobacco trade. The business was dissolved in 1775 after hostilities began. Contee also held numerous public offices.

1For GW’s attempt to sell his brigantine Farmer, see Thomas Newton, Jr., to GW, 19 April 1774, and GW to Robert McMickan, 10 May 1774, and note 2 of that document. For Contee’s payment for the vessel, see GW to George William Fairfax, 31 May 1775. Captain Bradstreet is probably Lyonel Bradstreet, who was master of the ship Potowmack in the 1780s and carried a letter to GW from Tench Tilghman in 1784. See Bradstreet to GW, 26 April 1785, and GW to Tench Tilghman, 29 July 1784. Bradstreet had dinner at Mount Vernon on 14 April 1775 (Diaries description begins Donald Jackson and Dorothy Twohig, eds. The Diaries of George Washington. 6 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1976–79. description ends , 3:321). The “New Boat” was probably one of two made by ship’s carpenter Joshua Kay in 1774. Kay built a twenty-nine-foot boat for which he was paid £11.12 and a “Fishing Boat” costing £5 (Lund Washington’s Mount Vernon account book, 1772–86, f. 33, ViMtvL).

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