George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Samuel Powel, 25 July 1787

From Samuel Powel

[Philadelphia] Wednesday 25 July 1787

Dear Sir

I have just seen the Coach-painter, whose prices are as follows

chariot Ground that is painting the Body £ 5.   
Solid Gilding that is the whole Moulding 5. 5.
Full do that is in all the Hollows 3.15.
Half do that is only round the 2.10.
Ornaments that is Arms &c. 3.   
Painting the Carriage 2.10.
Gilding the Springs 2.10.

At the above prices, the Chariot Body is to be painted in Varnish, the Surface polished & reduced to a perfect Smoothness—In this Case no Varnish is put on after the painting is perfected. There is another Mode of doing the Work, which is by painting first & varnishing after the painting is perfected, which looks very well but is not equally durable. This last Mode lessens the Expence £2.10.

The Painter informs me that it will take from four to five Weeks, according to the Weather, to perfect his Work. I have not made any Sort of Contract or mentioned any Name to him but, simply, demanded Price & Time. The Coachmaker is from Home so that I do not yet know the Price of Lining, but ⟨sh⟩all know it to Day. I am, with great Respect Dear Sir, Your most obedt humble Servt

Samuel Powel

The price for lining is £3 exclusive of the Cloth & Lace. A tolerable Cloth may be had, as the Coachmaker tells me, for 32/ per Yard—It will take about Five Yards—Lace from 15d. to 2/ per Yard—about 20 Yards of Lace—One Week will be required for lining a Chariot.1

ALS, ViMtvL.

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