George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Thomas Mifflin, 16 June 1794

From Thomas Mifflin

Philadelphia 16 June 1794


Having instructed the Attorney General to institute a prosecution against Robinson, the supposed murderer of a Friendly Indian at Fort Franklin, I have the honor to add to my communication of the 23rd Ulto on the subject,1 the inclosed copy of that Officer’s answer.2 With perfect respect, I remain, Sir, Your Excellency’s most obedt & most Hble Servt

Tho. Mifflin

LS, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters; copy, PHarH: Executive Correspondence, 1790-99; LB, PHarH: Executive Letterbooks.

1Mifflin was referring to his letter to Secretary of War Henry Knox of 23 May (see Knox to Bartholomew Dandridge, Jr., 23 May, n.1). Mifflin’s direction that Pennsylvania attorney general Jared Ingersoll should investigate was given in a letter from Alexander James Dallas to Ingersoll of the same date (PHarH: Executive Correspondence, 1790-99). For a more detailed account of the incident, see John Wilkins, Jr., to Mifflin, 4 July (PHarH: Executive Correspondence, 1790-99; see also Pa. Archives description begins Samuel Hazard et al., eds. Pennsylvania Archives. 9 ser., 138 vols. Philadelphia and Harrisburg, 1852–1949. description ends , 2d ser., 6:787-88). For the December 1794 trial at which Andrew Robertson was found not guilty, see Addison, Reports of Cases, 246-48. Robertson, whose name appeared in a newspaper report as A. Robertson, Jr., probably was a son of Andrew Robertson of Pittsburgh township, Allegheny County (Kline’s Carlisle Weekly Gazette, 21 May).

2Ingersoll’s letter to Dallas of this date reads: "I have instructed the Gentleman who Acts as my Deputy, in prosecuting the pleas of the Commonwealth for the County of Allegheny [Robert Galbraith], to proceed without delay, to obtain, in a regular course of Law, the most full and impartial Investigation of the charge against [ ] Robertson, for the Supposed Murder of a friendly Indian.

"I am confident, no delay will take place, in obtaining a Trial on the Charge, that the Guilt or Innocence of the person accused may be ascertained" (DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters).

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