George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Denis-Nicolas Cottineau de Kerloguen, 4 April 1778

To Denis-Nicolas Cottineau de Kerloguen

Head Quarters [Valley Forge] 4th April 1778.


I have received your obliging Letter of the 26th Feby with the Inventory of yr Cargo and congratulate you upon your safe Arrival in America—the delay of Your Sales incident to the compliment which you were so polite as to pay me, has probably been much greater than you were aware of, and I should not be surprised if in the mean time from an idea of your letters having miscarried, you should have been induced to break bulk, and Dispose of your Cargo1—however in case your good intentions shd have led you to persevere in your first resolution ’till now, and that you may not be a loser by them, I have transmitted to Congress a Copy of your Invoice, the Committee of foreign Affairs will probably give orders for the purchase of the principal part of your Cargo.2

I shall be very happy to have it in my power to render you any Services during your Stay in America, and to prove to you how sensible I am of the consideration which you have been pleased to shew me—that your Success may equal your expectation is the wish of Sir &c.

Df, in John Laurens’s writing, DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.

1On 6 Mar. an advertisement in the North-Carolina Gazette (New Bern) announced a sale of cargo from Cottineau’s vessel, the Ferdinand, to take place on 12 March.

2See GW to Henry Laurens, this date. Congress sent Francis Lewis of New York, who served on both the marine committee and the committee of commerce, to North Carolina to “treat with” Cottineau “for the purchase of divers articles of your Cargo” (Henry Laurens to Cottineau, 9 April, Laurens Papers description begins Philip M. Hamer et al., eds. The Papers of Henry Laurens. 16 vols. Columbia, S.C., 1968–2003. description ends , 13:93–94; see also Joseph Purnell to Richard Caswell, 5 May, N.C. State Records description begins Walter Clark, ed. The State Records of North Carolina. 16 vols., numbered 11-26. Winston and Goldsboro, N.C., 1895–1907. description ends , 13:119, and Cottineau to Laurens, 13 May, DNA:PCC, item 78).

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