George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Solomon Bush, 24 October 1793

From Solomon Bush

Alexandria [Va.]
Octr 24th 1793

May it please your Excellency—

The Naval Office for the Port of Philadelphia being vacant by the Death of Doctr Phile, Permit me to solicit the same, assuring your Excellency that shou’d I be honourd with the Appointment no endeavours shall be wanting in Me, to give satisfaction, and fill the duties of the Office.

I humbly beg leave to call your Excellencys attention to my present situation, confiding in your well known goodness for the liberty I take, some time since I was comfortably establish’d in England in a beneficial Medical employment in which I continued untill the Death of An aged Father called Me to my Country to take charge of three helpless Orphan Sisters whose tender years demanded my Protection, and to return again to Europe to my Practice when the wounds I receivd in the service of my Country became so troublesome as to render it impossible, and during The last Winter I underwent another operation having half of my thigh bone extracted, this has injured my Constitution so much, as to put it out of my power, to follow the practice of Medicine. thus am I situated with a Wife and family, three Sisters, and an unfortunate Brother, who was deprived of his reason (in a Campaign to the Southward under Genl Green) all looking to Me for support;1 pardon my mentioning these circumstances, but I trust your Excellencys well know Goodness will excuse—I shoud have endeavour’d to laid many recomendations from the Merchants, and others of the Port of Philadelphia, but at present there is no communication with that unfortunate City, and my Friend Mr Robert Morris is at a distance—I beg leave to Inclose a Letter from that Gentleman on a former occasion; when I was in Nomination as first Secretary to the Board of Treasury under the former Congress; that Board being dissolved the appointment fell through.2 I have honour to subscribe your Excellency Obdt Hble Servt

S. Bush


Bush wrote GW again on 12 Nov. promising, “as it has pleasd Providence to releive that unfortunate City from their late Calamity and the Citizens again returning to their homes shou’d your Excellency think it necessary, I will endeavour to obtain Recomendations of my Charecter, Conduct, and Attachment to our happy Goverment and cheerfully lay the same before you” (DLC:GW), but he did not obtain the appointment.

1Bush may have been referring to his half-sisters Richea Bush (1765– 1844), Margaret (Pier, Peggy) Bush (1770–1799), and Elkali (Eleanor) Bush (1772–1830), who married Moses Sheftall of Georgia in 1792. Bush married Ann (Nancy) Marshall (d. 1818), daughter of Christopher Marshall, Jr., of Philadelphia, in 1791. They had one son, Mathias. After Bush’s death (1795), she married Dr. William Currie in 1796.

2This letter has not been identified. Bush had applied to be secretary of the Board of Treasury in December 1780 (Bush to Continental Congress, 8 Dec. 1780, DNA:PCC, item 42).

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