George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Tristram Dalton, 25 February 1791

From Tristram Dalton

Philadelphia February 25th 1791


Having already taken the liberty of expressing to You the desire I entertain to continue in the service of the foederal Government—and of requesting the Honor of an Appointment therein, if consistent with Your Arrangements, Permit me, Sir, once more to address You on the Subject, so far as to mention a report that Mr Osgood has thoughts of resigning the place of Post Master General.1

Should this event take place, and the disposal of the Office not be otherwise contemplated by You, I beg leave to add that, the Charge of that Department would be agreeable to my views—and the appointment thereto gratefully acknowledged—With the greatest Respect I am Sir Your most obedient Humble Servant

Tristram Dalton


Tristram Dalton (1738–1817) was born in Newburyport, Mass., and graduated from Harvard in 1755. He studied law and was admitted to the bar, but embarked instead on a mercantile career with his father. Dalton was a member of the Massachusetts house of representatives from 1783 to 1786 and the Massachusetts senate from 1786 to 1789; in 1788 he was elected to a two-year term in the U.S. Senate, unsuccessfully seeking reelection in 1790. Thereafter he moved to the new Federal City, where he speculated in city lots and formed a mercantile partnership with Tobias Lear.

1Samuel Osgood did not resign until 11 July 1791 (see Osgood to GW, 11 July 1791, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters). GW appointed Timothy Pickering to succeed him (see Pickering to GW, 15 Jan. 1791). Dalton received no appointment from GW.

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