George Washington Papers

To George Washington from the Citizens of Elizabeth, New Jersey, 22 April 1789

From the Citizens of Elizabeth, New Jersey

Elizabeth Town [N.J.] April 22nd 1789


The citizens of Elizabeth desirous of evincing by every possible means the very great respect and affection which they entertain for your Excellency’s person and character, have directed that a cold collation be prepared for the refreshment of your Excellency & suite on your arrival here, of which we as a Committee of arrangement are requested to give the information.

If your Excellency will be pleased to communicate to us by the bearer, who waits for the purpose, your determination as to the time of leaving New Brunswick tomorrow morning, it would aid us in the preparations it may be proper to make for your Excellency’s reception & accommodation.

The Committee of Congress deputed to meet your Excellency at this place, are also invited & expected to partake of the collation. We have the honor to be with the highest respect your Excellency’s hum. servt

Jona: Dayton

Aaron Ogden

Jonathan H. Lawrence


After leaving Princeton sometime in mid-morning of 22 April, GW and his party proceeded to New Brunswick. A few miles south of the town, the mayor and a group of well-wishers met GW and conducted him into New Brunswick to the usual accompaniment of ringing bells and firing cannon. After dining probably at the house of Maj. Thomas Egbert, a former officer in the New Jersey militia (Pennsylvania Packet, and Daily Advertiser [Philadelphia], 2 May 1789), he left New Brunswick around five o’clock and spent the night in Woodbridge. He left Woodbridge soon after sunrise, to reach Elizabeth Town around nine o’clock and, apparently unable to extricate himself from the reception committee, breakfasted at Samuel Smith’s Red Lion Inn rather than with Elias Boudinot as had been planned (see Boudinot to GW, 22 April 1789; Boyd, Boudinot, description begins George Adams Boyd. Elias Boudinot: Patriot and Statesman, 1740–1821. Princeton, N.J., 1952. description ends 161n; Freeman, Washington, description begins Douglas Southall Freeman. George Washington: A Biography. 7 vols. New York, 1948–57. description ends 6:177–79). GW’s reply to this address has not been found.

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