George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Edward Pemberton, 29 January 1794

From Edward Pemberton

London at Mr Pridden’s No. 100 Fleet street1
Jany 29th 1794

May it please Your Excellency

As I heretofore took the liberty of an address to Your Excellency, and of adding thereto a small Poetical Composition, which so far won Your approbation, as to gain from Your Excellency a letter of Notice in return; I again presume to rely upon your generous Candour to forgive another address to Your Excellency tho at a long interval of time from the first.2 herein I have no claim whatever to Your Excellency’s attention. in Obedience to the call of Friendship I step forth in behalf of a Young Man, whom I much Value and esteem. Your Excellency has honourd me much in one instance already, and I venture again to break in upon those most precious Moments, which are dedicated solely to the Good of Your Country, and of Mankind. A Glorious Cause it is; and has supereminently flourishd under Your auspicious Exertions.

Loth I am to exceed the bounds of that Modesty, which I am conscious I ought upon this occasion to observe. if Friendship excites me to go beyond them, it is the best plea that I can bring. May it weigh with Your Excellency. May You deign to look upon an humble Suitor—a deserving and Spirited Young Man who with a Young Wife, and Children in her Arms, is about to brave the Billows of the Atlantic, in quest of a distant Country, which he finds Motives to prefer to his Own; and where, in these turbulent times Security and Peace promise most to be found. could this Young Man succeed to a small degree of favour from Your Excellency happy would he be. tho humble, with Merit he may plead with the Great. the truly Great will over look no One. My Friend has been bred up in the Mechanical line, but with some others of his Countrymen, who are to accompany him to the States where Your Excellency Presides, he is desirous if he can to embark in Agriculture. By his talents indeed, he may be adapted to different Occupations. his Name is Patrick, a friend and Neighbour of mine; a Native of Suffolk, an inhabitant of Long Melford near Sudbury in that County where he exercised the trade of a Watch maker, and a Silversmith. he Seeks for favour only by his Industry and Merit.3 May he prosper in a foreign Clime. The Eyes of the Lord are over All. And may Heaven long preserve Your Excellency as a Pattern of what ever is good and great. this is the devout Prayer of Your Excellencys devoted and most Obedient Servant

Edwd: Pemberton


1John Pridden, Sr. (1728–1807) was a bookseller at 100 Fleet Street in London. See Patrick Boyle, The General London Guide; or, Tradesman’s Directory for the Year 1794 (London, 1793), 24.

2Pemberton enclosed poems in two previous letters. GW replied on 20 June 1788 to the letter of 21 March 1788, but no reply has been found to that of 11 July 1789.

3No reply from GW to this letter has been found.

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