George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Timothy Pickering, 15 October 1793

From Timothy Pickering

Philadelphia Oct. 15. 1793.


The intelligence contained in the enclosed copy of a letter from Mr Storer, seemed to be of sufficient consequence to trouble you with; and I should have transmitted it a week ago; but the sickness in my family, and the death of a favourite son, have prevented me.1

To Governor Simcoe’s public professions of regret &c. at the issue of the treaty, a number of facts may be opposed. These with other communications I hope to have the honour to lay before you, when it shall please God to permit you to return hither with safety.2

I have received no further intelligence from Mr Storer. It may be proper for me to say, that I think Captain Ford a man of honour. He is a very sensible man; and whatever information he communicates from Mr Shehan may be the more relied on, as they married sisters, and the families lived under one roof. Capt. Ford has come to the States for the recovery of his health.3

The applications to Dr Rush, for two or three days past, have sensibly lessened, and the reports from his patients in general, are favourable: whence I hope the destructive fever is abating. It is now beginning to rain, and there is a prospect of its continuance; after which we may expect a cool air and frost that may destroy the fatal contagion. With great respect, I am, sir, your most obedient servant

Timothy Pickering

ALS, DLC:GW; ADf, MHi: Pickering Papers.

1Charles Storer (1761–1829) of Boston, who graduated from Harvard in 1779 and served for a time as a private secretary for John Adams, acted as secretary for the commissioners, including Pickering, appointed to hold a treaty with the Northwest Indians at Sandusky earlier in 1793. Edward Pickering (1787–1793) died on 10 October.

2Among the evidence to dispute the good faith of John Graves Simcoe’s expressions of regret was an undated [c.23 June–July 1793] memorandum of John Heckewelder to the commissioners, which is now in DLC:GW. Heckewelder reported that missionaries at the Moravian towns stated that the previous winter Simcoe “had positively said: that there would be no Peace between the Indn Nations & the United States—That the Indians must have the Lands to the Ohio for hunting Grounds—that they would insist on this, & accept of no proposals made to them by the Commissioners Short of this,” and that another officer “had lately said . . . that they yet had some hopes of having all the Country unto the Ohio River joined to Upper Canada.”

3Henry Ford (d. 1793) was captain of the British schooner Dunmore on Lake Erie; Walter Butler Sheehan, a nephew of Lt. Col. John Butler, resided near Niagara, where he acted as an interpreter, clerk, and storekeeper for the Indian Department and served for a time as sheriff.

Index Entries