From William Washington
Sandy-Hill [S.C.] Jany 6th 1794
Some time in April last I had the honor of addressing a Letter to you giving a particular account of the situation of Royal Gift, together with Mr Freazer’s account of his covering, which left a balance in your favor, of six hundred & seventy eight Dollars & 64/100, after deducting James Allen’s charge, which was enclos’d in a Bill drawn by Prestman & Calhoun of Charleston upon Wm Bell of Philadelphia.1 Some weeks thereafter I forwarded a duplicate with the second Bill: as I have not receiv’d an answer to either of those Letters it leaves me in doubt whether both have not miscarried.2 In the Letters to which I have alluded I inform’d you that Royal Gift had been affected with a stiffness in his joints & a periodical lameness ever since his arrival in this Country which I believed to be the effects of his Journey, & am now sorry to add that his situation at present is not better & am apprehensive that it never will. Upon minute enquiry I have only been informed of two Foals which were produced from forty odd Mares & Jennies which were sent to him the Season before last. Under these circumstances I thought it prudent to lower the Terms of covering, but it did not answer the desired effect, only fifteen or sixteen Mares & Jennies were sent to him, all the property of those Gentlemen who had been disappointed the Season before.3 The Money has not yet been paid & I now submit to you the propriety of demanding it except for those which shall eventually prove in foal.
If you think proper to let Royal-Gift remain in this Country I shall with pleasure take charge of him & consult your interest in the management of him, but am confident that it will be useless to advertise him for covering again in this Country, even at a very reduced price unless a great alteration takes place in his situation. If you think proper to have him sent to Virginia he must be conveyed by Water as I am certain that he cannot travel thither by land.4 I am Sir with the greatest Respect & Regard Yr Very Obedt Serv.
ALS, PPRF; ALS (photocopy), DLC:GW.
1. For William Washington’s letter and its enclosures concerning GW’s jackass Royal Gift, see his letter to GW of 20 April 1793 and n.1. The bill probably was drawn on Philadelphia merchant William Bell of 217 High Street. (Philadelphia Directory 1794 description begins James Hardie. The Philadelphia Directory and Register . . .. Philadelphia, 1794. description ends , 10).
3. The original cost for Royal Gift’s services was six guineas for a jenny and five guineas for a mare (William Washington to George Augustine Washington, 15 Oct. 1792, in n.1 of GW to William Washington, 30 Jan. 1793).