George Washington Papers

To George Washington from John Fitzgerald, 11 October 1793

From John Fitzgerald

Alexandria [Va.] 11th Octr 1793

Dear Sir

On my return last night from the General Court at Anapolis, I found myself honor’d by two letters from you, one of Monday on private business, & the other covering your Answer to the resolves of the town meeting, which were enclosed to you.1

You will be pleased to observe that the Publick Papers join the Eighth Resolution with the others which, I dont know why, were seperated in the Copy sent, this I presume will render the Answer, to be made public, proper & necessary, which will accordingly appear.

You may be assur’d that I have paid the most direct & strict attention to the subject of your house & Lott & would have wrote you respecting it; but could not bring it to any conclusion[.] The man in possession has not yet return’d from Boston & his family consisting of a Wife & some small Children declaring that an agreement existed between them & Mr Whiting, which gave them a right for some time, they could not say how long, to remain in possession, I should in a Post or two have requested your directions how to act[.] they appear to be an orderly, though poor people, & were extremely distress’d when I told them a few days ago that unless something satisfactory was done in a short time they must be dispossess’d[.] In this state of things I am happy to find that you have other use for the House & that I have not had it in my power to make any agreement for it, by which your intentions can be prevented[.] I am satisfied that no written Contract between your late Agent & those people can appear, to prevent your taking possession whenever you think proper, & the Situation of the poor people will admit of a removal on their part.2 With sentiments of purest Esteem & Attachment I have the honor to be your mo. Obedt Hble Servant

John Fitzgerald


2In July GW had asked Fitzgerald to act as his agent for the possible rental to Cleon Moore of GW’s townhouse at the corner of Pitt and Cameron Streets in Alexandria, Virginia. Acting on that request, Fitzgerald discovered that a family named Jackson was in possession of the house, and that it was in poor repair (see GW to Fitzgerald, 19 July, and Fitzgerald to GW, 3 Aug.). GW then asked, in a letter of 11 Aug., that Fitzgerald look into the agreement made with the Jacksons by Anthony Whitting and take appropriate action. The missing letter of 7 Oct. apparently informed Fitzgerald that GW was thinking of offering use of the house to Frances Bassett Washington (see her letter to GW, 22 Nov.; GW to her, 15 Dec.; and GW to William Pearce, 23 Dec.).

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