To Burgess Ball
Philadelphia 16th March 1794
At length your clover-seed, and chocolate Nut shells, are on Ship board for Alexandria; consigned to the care of Colo. Gilpin. The Vessel was to have sailed this day, but whether she is gone, or not, I am unable to say—she has been going every day for ten days, but I would not put your things nor my own Seeds on board until the last moment, lest they should get heated in the hold. yesterday they were embarked. It is to be regretted no opportunity offered sooner, but this is the first since I came to the City.1
The three bushels of clover seed, and freight of it to Alexandria (which is paid here) stands in Twenty three dollars—The Nut shells Fanny will accept as a present.2
I would thank you for causing the enclosed to be set up in Leesburgh; and if you chuse to send a Mare to either of the Jacks you are welcome or to the Horse.3 The family here join in love to you & Mrs Ball and I am—Dear Sir, Your Affectionate Servt
ALS, owned (1987) by William Hale Books, Washington, D.C. The cover is addressed to Ball at “Leesburgh,” Va., and the postal stamps read, “17 MR.” and “FREE.”
1. For GW’s previous promise to send these items to Ball and the reason for the delay in shipment, see GW to Ball, 24 February. At GW’s request, Bartholomew Dandridge, Jr., wrote to Alexandria, Va., merchant George Gilpin on 17 March: “The President has directed me to transmit to you the enclosed bill of lading, & to beg the favor of you to receive from Captain [David] Denik⟨e⟩, when he arrives at Alexandria, the articles mentioned in the bill. Two of the barrels, Nos. 1 and 5. belong to Colo. B. Ball, who is informed that they will be consigned to your care. These you will be so good as to retain, ’till a safe conveyance for them can be had to Colo. Ball. All the others are to go to Mount Vernon, & Mr Pearce, the manager there, is directed where to call for them. The Captain has indeed promised, if possible to put them on shore at Mt Vernon; but it is very uncertain whether he will or not” (DLC:GW). On the shipment of these and other items on the Sally, see also GW to William Pearce, 16–17 March. On the arrival of these items, see Ball to GW, 5 April.
2. On 24 Feb., GW paid $2.20 for “2½ busls chocolate shels,” and a barrel to contain them for shipment to Ball’s wife and GW’s niece, Frances Washington Ball (Household Accounts).
3. The enclosure was an advertisement offering the stud services of GW’s horse Traveller and his jacks Knight of Malta and Compound. For a published text of this advertisement, see n.1 of Bartholomew Dandridge, Jr., to Angell & Sullivan and Samuel Hanson of 26 February.