George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Andrew Lewis, Jr., 27 April 1792

From Andrew Lewis, Jr.

Russel County [Va.] April 27th 1792


I see amongst the appointments for the Companys of Rifflemen to be raised on the Frontiers of Virginia that my Brother Wm Lewis is appointed to the command of a Company, and am heartily Sorry that his Situation would not allow him to accept the appointment he some time past was left a Widower with two small Children—and was a few Days prior to his receiving his Instructions Married1 no Doubt but the long Friendship that Subsisted between your Excellency and our Deceased Father was the occasion of his meeting with the appointment—I have heard of Severals refusing to take their appointments amongst whom is Mr Hawkins now in Actual Service as Lieutt in my Company rais’d for the Defence Frontiers of this State that with his bad State of Health obliges him to refuse—if in there rooms others are appointed I would take the Liberty of recommending Mr James Bryan of Montgomery County as Ensign2 a young man of an exceeding good Character & I would be answerable for his conduct as an Officer and well used to that of useing a Riffle if appointed will assure his Serving & will forever acknowledge it as a Singular Favour confered on myself, I should have been happy to have Served on that Expedition if I could have been in the Horse Service. I have Sir the Honor to be your Excellency’s mo. Obedt Servt

Andrw Lewis


1For GW’s appointment of officers for the frontier companies, see the enclosure to his second letter to the U.S. Senate of 6 March. William Lewis was a son of Brig. Gen. Andrew Lewis, Sr. (1720–1781), and Elizabeth Givens Lewis. In 1793 he accepted a captaincy in Lt. Col. William Russell’s Ky. militia regiment. During Maj. Gen. Anthony Wayne’s campaign, he commanded a company in Maj. William Price’s battalion of mounted volunteers, which had been called into federal service in 1794 as part of Brig. Gen. Robert Todd’s brigade. Lewis served until his discharge in 1796.

2At GW’s request Alexander Gibson was appointed in place of William Lewis (see Henry Knox to GW, 12 May 1792). No evidence has been found suggesting that GW ever appointed James Bryan an ensign.

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