George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Joseph Galloway, 20 December 1777

To Joseph Galloway

Head Quarters [Valley Forge] 20th Decemr 1777


I have your favr of the 18th by Mr Potts.1 Commissioners being appointed by the legislative Authority of this State to take cognizance of and to dispose of the personal property of those who have willingly gone over to the Enemy, it is not in my power to grant a licence for the removal of any of your effects.2 I have not the least objections to Mrs Galloways going to Philada and I shall be ready to furnish passports for that purpose whenever they are applied for. I am Sir Yr most obt Servt.

Df, in Tench Tilghman’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1John Potts apparently conveyed this letter along with his letter to GW of this date.

2On 21 Oct. 1777 the Pennsylvania council of safety issued a proclamation declaring its authority to seize “all and every the personal Estate and effects whatsoever” of any inhabitants who assisted the British and appointing county commissioners for that purpose (Pa. Col. Records description begins Colonial Records of Pennsylvania. 16 vols. Harrisburg, 1840–53. description ends , 11:329; see also Pa. Laws description begins Laws Enacted in a General Assembly of the Representatives of the Freemen of the Common-Wealth of Pennsylvania. Begun and held at Philadelphia the Twelfth day of May, A.D. One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy Seven, and continued by adjournment to Lancaster, until the Fourteenth day of October, A.D. One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy Seven. Lancaster, Pa., 1777. description ends , 60). The council of safety also ordered the proclamation to be published (ibid., 331), and Lancaster printer Francis Bailey printed it as a broadside.

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