George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Tench Tilghman, 1 March 1786

From Tench Tilghman

Baltimore 1st March 1786

Dear Sir

I have recd your favr of the 22d ulto in consequence of which I sent for Rawlins and have prevailed upon him to go down to Mount Vernon, as I found him incapable of giving such directions in writing as would have been intelligible—The Expences of this journey are certainly provided for in the Agreement, which you have inclosed.1 I did not hint at a doubt of this, as I knew if I gave Rawlins the least opening to make it an extra matter, he would take advantage of you.

No Horse has been imported here lately from England. The last that I remember belonged to a Mr Hall of Prince Georges County—what Freight he paid I cannot learn.2

I must beg the favor of you to make the Compliments of Mrs Tilghman and myself to Mrs Washington—I am with very sincere Regard Dear Sir Yr most obt & most humble Servt

Tench Tilghman


1The enclosed articles of agreement, dated 25 Feb., made with John Rawlins, “Stucco Worker” of Baltimore, by Tilghman on behalf of GW provided that Rawlins would “on or before the fifteenth Day of April next at furthest begin to work upon a Certain Room at Mount Vernon . . . distinguished by the Name of the New Room” and would “truly and diligently continue to do and perform the Stucco Work of the said Room until he shall have finished the same, according to the Plan which hath been agreed upon . . . in a true workman like manner.” Rawlins was to “provide all necessary Workmen and Tools for the carrying on the said Work.” In return, Tilghman agreed that GW would “upon the finishing of the Room aforesaid, pay” Rawlins £168, plus £13.10 for traveling expenses, Maryland currency. Also, if “Rawlins shall require it,” Tilghman on behalf of GW would advance him “any sum of Money, not exceeding the sum of fifty Pounds Maryland Currency.” Tilghman also agreed that GW would “at his own expence and in the manner most convenient to himself, transport the necessary Workmen and Tools” provided by Rawlins from Baltimore to Mount Vernon and back again. GW also would “be at the expence of transporting by Water . . . such of the Stucco as it shall be necessary to mould at Baltimore and . . . furnish . . . Rawlins as well as his Workmen with proper Board and Lodging while they are employed at Mount Vernon.” Finally, Tilghman agreed that GW would “at his own expence furnish and provide the Matterials necessary to compleat the work.” Tilghman and Rawlins both posted performance bonds of £500.

2This may be Benjamin Hall of Francis (d. 1803), who lived at Pleasant Hill in Prince George’s County, Md., or his brother Richard Bennett Hall (1760–1805), who lived at Partnership in Prince George’s County.

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