George Washington Papers

To George Washington from David Lenox, 5 December 1793

From David Lenox

Philadelphia 5th Decemr 1793


I feel myself in a very delicate situation respecting the subject on which I am about to address you.

The Death of Mr Thomas Smith has made a vacancy in an Office to which I conceive my abilities equal & for which I beg leave to apply.1

I declare to you Sir that I think the Appointment with which you have favored me equally honorable,2 but there are circumstances which to me would make a change very agreeable. Should I be so fortunate as to succeed to my wishes, my best endeavours shall not be wanting to execute the Duties of the Office with justice to the Public & reputation to myself. I have the honor to be With every sentiment of Respect Sir Your Most Obedt Servt

D. Lenox


1Thomas Smith, commissioner of loans for Pennsylvania, died on 3 December. Other applicants for his position included Matthew Clarkson, who wrote GW on 4 Dec. (DLC:GW), Jonathan Smith, for whom Richard Peters wrote on 5 Dec., and William Nichols, who wrote on 6 Dec. (DLC:GW), but GW nominated Stephen Moylan for the post on 5 December.

2Lenox had been appointed U.S. marshal for Pennsylvania in early October. His nomination was sent to the Senate on 27 Dec. and confirmed on 30 Dec. (Senate Executive Journal description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States of America: From the commencement of the First, to the termination of the Nineteenth Congress. Vol. 1. Washington, D.C., 1828. description ends , 142–44).

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