George Washington Papers

From George Washington to David Griffith, 29 August 1784

To David Griffith

Mount Vernon 29th Augt 1784

Dr Sir,

Colo. Fitzhugh informs me that the Academy at George town is upon a good establishment—that the Gentn at the head of it is very capable, and clever in conducting of it—that the school is in high estimation, & that the terms are £25 for board, & £6.10 for teaching, Maryland Curry. Under these circumstances, let me pray you to inform Mr Nourse that I think it a desirable place to fix my Nephews at—Colo. Fitzhugh adds—that as Mr Balch is a particular friend of his, he will write to him on the subject as I should prefer having them boarded at his house to that of any other in town.1 I am Dr Sir &c.

G: Washington


1Colonel Fitzhugh was probably William Fitzhugh of Maryland. The two sons of the deceased Samuel Washington, George Steptoe and Lawrence Augustine whose ages were about 11 and 9, were enrolled in the academy of the Rev. Stephen Bloomer Balch in Georgetown, Md., and remained there for a little over a year before GW deemed it too expensive and brought them back across the river to Alexandria. They lived only briefly in Balch’s house. See GW to James Nourse, 22 Jan. 1784, and GW to Balch, 26 June, 22 Nov. 1785. GW placed the boys in the William McWhir’s academy in Alexandria in November 1785 and secured board and room for them first at Mrs. Parthenia Dade’s and in January 1787 at Samuel Hanson’s.

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