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    • Washington, George
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Your Letter of the 21st Ulto I received on Thursday last, for which I am extremely obliged to you. I never doubted, but that the Treatment of our prisoners in the Hands of the Enemy was such as could not be justified either upon the principles of Humanity or the practice of War. Facts were too stubborn & glaring to admit a more favourable supposition. But had the charge not been supported...
I have received your favor of the 3d Inst. inclosing your Resignation which I have delivered in to the Secy at War. I am convinced your transition from the Military to the Civil Line will be attended with good consequences, as you will be able to communicate that kind of information to the Body of which you are now a Member, which they often stand in need of in times like the present—And as...
The fair hand to whom your letter of the 20th of Jany was committed presented it safe, & as you rightly observd—the value of it was enhanced by it. Good Laws—ample means—& sufficient powers—may render the birth of your Intendant a public benefit; and from the spirit of your people I hope these are provided— without them the appointment must be nugatory—Never, since the commencement of the...
Mr Lindsay handed me your favor of the 14th—the disposition of the Prisoners is not with me, but I have accompanied your request to the Secretary at War, and have no doubt of his acquiescence—If the Ladies should derive as much additional pleasure from the attainment of this Band, as I wish them, they will soon be at the summit of happiness. At present, we are inveloped in darkness; and no...
If the Commanders of the Fleets and Armies of our late, most Gracious Sovereign , in America; are not guilty of more duplicity than comports with candid Minds; we are now advanced to that critical & important Crisis, when our hands are to be tried at the Arts of Negociation. In a Letter which I have receivd and forwarded to Congress, from Sir Guy Carlton & Admiral Digby, are these Words "We...
I am pained to find by your Letter of the 30th Ulto, that you cannot get rid of your fever. Try change of Air—come to the Camp—Any thing to remove a disorder which seems to pursue you with unabating obstinacy, & may, if suffered to run on you any longer, become too powerful for Medicine. The Army has at length taken the Field, and is Encamped at this place; waiting a junction with the French...
In a visit to the Post of Dobb’s Ferry last Saturday, I accidentally met with Majr Lynch at that place, & received from him your letter of the 30th Ulto. In a time like this, of general uncertainty with respect to the designs of the British Court, it is not at all wonderful to find men enquiring at every Corner for News—The North sends to the South, and the South to the North, to obtain it....
I am pained because I cannot answer the expectation & request of your letter of the 10th Instt—which only came to my hands on Sunday by the Post—to your satisfaction. To make such an application as you require to the Financier, would, I know, be unavailing—first, because he has most decidedly, refused to adjust, & discharge the claim of any Officer who is a resident in, & the subject of the...
Immediately on the Rect of your Letter to me of the 2nd of the Month I orderd an inquirey to be made after the Negro—and have reced the inclosed Letter from Colonel Vose in answer. Had the Negro been in Camp I should have been happy in restoring him to Mrs Dulany—as well on account of her own Merit as the pleasure it would have afforded you, to have obliged a Lady who has so clever a Daughter....
Immediately upon the Receipt of your letter of the 15th expressive of your wish to go to the Court of Versailles, or London as Official Secretary to the Embassy; I wrote to Messrs Livingston & Maddison on the subject, & mentioned you in warm terms to them—the Letters will go by this days Post. I thank you very sincerely for your kind congratulation on the approaching Peace; none can enjoy it...
You will see by the inclosed Copies, which are answers to my letters to Mr Livingston and Mr Madison, upon what footing the appointments to Foreign Courts stand. If these Gentlemen should leave Congress previous to the taking place of this Event—Your friends in Congress should advise you thereof, & of the time at which these elections may probably be made—and I can facilitate your wishes by...
After a tour of at least 750 Miles (performed in Nineteen days) I returned to this place yesterday Afternoon, where I found your favor of the 31st Ulto intimating a resolution of Congress for calling me to Princeton, partly as it would seem, on my own account, and partly for the purpose of giving Aid to Congress; but the President not having sent on the Resolution I am left ignorant of the...
I have thrown together the following sentiments on the papers you put into my hand yesterday. Brevets which have been given with conditions annexed, ought, undoubtedly, to have the conditions fulfilled; because it is a contract between the Parties. Simple Brevets, must be determined by the usage & Custom of other Armies, if there is no established rule for considering of them in our own; I...
After seeing the backs of the British Forces turned upon us, and the Executive of the State of New York put into the peaceable possession of their Capitol, I set out for this place. On Monday next I expect to leave the City, and by slow traveling arrive at Baltimore on Wednesday, where I will spend one day and then proceed to Annapolis and get translated into a private Citizen. I am y’r...
Your letter of the 1st Instt came to this place whilst I was absent on a tour up the Potomack, or an earlier acknowledgement of it would have been given. The inclosure shall, either by this, or the next Post, be sent to Doctr Gordon for his information, and that justice may be done to a character so deserving of American gratitude, & the pen of a Historiographer as that of the Marquis de la...
I met your favor of the 5th, in Alexandria yesterday. Today I dispatch one of my Overseers and two Servants for the Jack & Mules which are arrived at Baltimore. The Pheasants & Partridges, I pray you to procure a passage for them by Water, in the Packet. To bring them by Land would be troublesome, & might perhaps be dangerous for them. Be so good as to let me know the expence of these...
Letter not found: to James McHenry, 16 Nov. 1786. McHenry wrote GW on 18 Nov. : “I received your letter of the 16th this evening.”
Your letters of the 18th by the Packet, & 19th by the Post, are both at hand—The Birds were landed yesterday. A Patridge died on the passage. If Monsr Campion’s information is to be depended on, he had no letter from the Marquis de la Fayette or any other character in France, for me; nothing confidential therefore could have been disclosed by the loss of his pocket book, unless it was...
Not having sent to the Post office for several days your favor of the 20th inst. did not get to my hand till last night. I mention this circumstance as an apology for my not giving it an earlier acknowledgment. As you are pleased to ask my opinion of the consequences of an adjournment of your Convention until the meeting of ours, I shall [(]tho’ I have meddled very little in this political...
To a letter which I wrote to you somedays ago, I beg leave to refer you. I congratulate with you on the happy decision of your Convention; having no doubt of its weight on those States which are to follow. In a letter (just received) from Colo. Spaight of North Carolina he informs me of his having sent a small bag of Pease to your care, for me. Have you received them? If so, be so good as to...
In reply to your recent favour, which has been duly received, I can only observe; that, as I never go from home except when I am obliged by necessary avocations, and as I meddle as little as possible with politics that my interference may not give occasion for impertinent imputations, so I am less likely than almost any person to have been informed of the circumstance to which you allude. That...
With a heart duly impressed with a sense of the kind invitation you have been pleased to give me to your House I receivd your favor of the 29th ult., and pray you to accept my thanks for this farther testimony of your polite attention to me; but at the same time I offer you this tribute of my gratitude, I must beg your excuse for not complying with the request. For, however pleasing it might...
I have received your very friendly letter of the 28th of June, and feel a grateful sense of the interest which you take in my welfare and happiness, and the kind solicitude which you express for the recovery of my health—I have now the pleasure to inform you that my health is restored, but a feebleness still hangs upon me, and I am yet much incommoded by the incision which was made in a very...
(Confidential) Dear Sir, New York Novr 30th 1789. I have received your letter of the 14th instt—and in consequence of the suggestions contained therein, added to other considerations which occurred to me, I have thought it best to return Judge Harrison his Commission, and I sincerely hope that upon a further consideration of the Subject he may be induced to revoke his former determination &...
Letter not found: to James McHenry, c.11 July 1792. McHenry wrote GW on 17 July that he had received GW’s letter, noting: “It has the Philadelphia post mark of the 11th.”
(Private) Dear Sir, Mount Vernon Augt 13th 1792. Your letter of the 17th of July came duly to hand. I could, with pleasure, spend a day in Baltimore on my return to Philadelphia, if time & circumstances would permit; but it is not for me at this moment to say whether either would suit me; besides, I shall confess to you candidly, I have no relish for formal & ceremonious engagements, and only...
(Private) Dear Sir, Mount Vernon Augt 31st 1792 The characters given of Messrs Smith & Hollingsworth by you, comports very much with those I have received from others, and therefore of the two, the preference is given to the former. But as neither stand upon such high grounds as Mr Tilghman or Mr Hammond, and as it is my duty as well as inclination to fill Offices with the most suitable...
(Private) Dear Sir, Mount Vernon Septr 21st [1792]. Fearing some accident may have prevented my last (enclosing a letter for Mr Robt Smith) from reaching your hands, I take the liberty of giving you the trouble to receive this, requesting to be informed if this be the fact—and if not, what has been the result of your enquiries in the business Committed to you. I have had many applications in...
I have been favored with your letter of the 11th of this month, and thank you very cordially for the information contained in it. I have also received your letter of the 9th instant, recommending Mr J. H. Purviance to fill the Office of Surveyor of the Port of Baltimore. And altho’ you know it is not my custom to answer letters of this description; yet on the present occasion I have thought it...
(Private) Dear Sir, Philadelphia 8th April 1794 Your private letters of the 31st of March & 3d instt have been duly received. Although it is a rare, if not an entire new thing with me, to answer letters applying for appointments, yet from motives of esteem & regard, & our former connexion in public life, I shall acknowledge the receipt of yours on this head; although I can say nothing more on...
Letter not found: to James McHenry, 1 July 1795. A purported ALS was offered for sale by Parke-Bernet, The James McHenry Papers, Part I: Public Auction Sale, (3 May 1944), item 213.
Let this letter be received with the same friendship and frankness, with which it is written, nothing would add more to the satisfaction this would give me, than your acceptance of the offer I am going to make you. Without further preface then, will you suffer me to nominate you to the office of Secretary of War? That I may give evidence of the candour I have professed above, I shall inform...
Your letters of the 21st & 24th instant have been duly received. The last, in time on tuesday, to give in the nominations of yourself & Mr Chase for the Offices contemplated. The day following they were advised & consented to by the Senate; and the Commissions will be ready for the reception of you both on your arrival in this City. of this be so good as to inform Mr Chase; and, if he is still...
The letters, with their enclosures from Genl Wilkenson, shew in an additional strong point of view, the indispensable necessity of moving the requisite quantity of Provisions & Stores to the upper Posts of the Army, North West of the Ohio. I therefore desire, you will not only make the necessary arrangements with Genl Wayne (to whom the contents of these Papers might be communicated) but...
Young Fayette and his friend are with me—Come & dine with them to day at 3 oclock if you are not otherwise engaged. Yours always Privately owned.
Having but this moment returned from a Ride, I could not hand the enclosed to you sooner. As an expression therein stood, it might have embarrassed the Commissioner. What the Indians might deem a good price, & be well content to receive, he might judge inadequate; and thereby, so tied down, might mar the Negociation. To see that the business is conducted fairly , and with candour is enough....
The enclosed letter presents a serious—perhaps a just view of the subject which has been under consideration —and as I wish in every thing, particularly in matters of foreign relation, to conduct with caution; I request that your letter to the Govr General of Canada; the Instructions to Major Lewis; and all your arrangements respecting the reception of the Posts may accord with the ideas...
Return the enclosed as soon as Mr Ross (under strong injunctions) have read it—Never put papers, improper to be seen, under a cover sealed with a Wafer—At any time, but especially when wet, the contents m ay be seen and the cover closed without suspicion, or appearance of being opened. DLC : James McHenry Papers.
Your letters of the 14th & 15th instant have been received, but not in time, to have been answered by the Post of Monday last; being then on My Journey to this place. The ground on which you place the compliance with Lieutt Geddes’s request, appears to be the best the nature of the case is now susceptible of; and for that purpose, I return the Proceedings of the Court Martial and other Papers...
Your letter of the 27th Ulto by Post, with its enclosures (the originals of which, I return) came to my hands on Wednesday. And your other letters of the 27th & 28th by Express, was received about five oclock yesterday afternoon. The accounts brought in the latter, are very pleasing indeed, inasmuch as they will serve to remove the doubts of the credulous (with respect to the Western Posts);...
By the Post, rather than by the Express, you will receive my Official letter, and its Enclosures. For the difference of a few hours, in a case that is not urgent, I would have you avoid sending an Express to me. The latter does not travel faster than the Mail; of course there cannot (unless Sunday intervene’s) be more, in any case (supposing an occasion to arise in one hour after the Mail was...
Having written a great many letters for this day’s Post; and being a good deal fatigued thereby and with the heat of the weather, I shall do no more, at present, than to inform you that your letters of the 2d and 3d instant with the enclosures of the first —came perfectly safe, and that my letter to the Secretary of State, of this date, will inform you confidentially of my decision with...
Your private letter of the 5th instant, with its enclosures, has been received. Mr Adet was as cordially, & as repeatedly asked to visit Mount Vernon as either of the other foreign characters; but to me , he never said he would come. La Fayette & Mr Frestal however, the day before I left Philadelphia, understood him that he should set out on this visit in ten days after me; since which I have...
Your letter of the 6th instant, with copies of other letters to the Secretaries of State, and Treasury; respecting the charges exhibited by Brigadier Wilkinson against General Wayne, has been received; and when an opinion is formed thereon, I shall expect to receive it. I know of nothing, at present, that will prevent my being in Philadelphia between the 15th of August and first of September:...
The purport of your private letter, of the 7th instant (that part of it I mean, which relates to the Frigate for the Regency of Algiers) has surprised me exceedingly. That no step yet, should have been taken to carry this measure into vigorous execution; and that it should be asked, near six weeks after it had been resolved to comply with the Deys request, and an actual stipulation of our...
Your letters of the 10th, 12th and 13th instant, with their enclosures, came all by the last Mail to Alexandria; and were received by me on Saturday morning. The contents of such parts as require it, shall be noticed. The greatest, and what appears to me to be an insuperable difficulty in the way of running and marking the boundary line between the United States and the Cherokee tribe of...
I have not segacity enough to discover what end was to be answered by reporting—first, that I was to be in Philadelphia on the 4th July—and secondly, when that report was contradicted by my non-appearance, then to account for it by a fall from my Phæton. If any scheme could have originated; or been facilitated by these, or any other reports, however unfounded, I should not have been surprised...
Your private letter of the 16 came to my hands at the same time that your official one did of the 18th. From what is there said & appears by the enclosures, I am satisfied no unnecessary delay respecting the Algierine frigate has taken place. From a former one, & perhaps from a solicitude to execute promptly whatever is entrusted to me, I had conceived otherwise. As I have Mr Liston here, &...
Your letter of the 18th instant with its enclosures, came to hand by the last Mail. Such of the latter, as are original, I herewith return to your Office. It would appear from the extract of Mr Habersham’s letter, that the Treaty (or rather meeting) between the Georgians and Creek Indians, has terminated unfavourably; and will tend, it is to be feared, to hostilities. A favorable result could...
The enclosed letter from Mr Landais, transmitting one from you to him, was received by the last Post. Filling the vacancies in the Corps of Artillery, before the adjournment of the Senate, was suggested; but why, as it was not proposed by the military Act, that it should undergo any diminution, it was not done, my memory does not serve me. If there are more Cadets in that Regiment than Mr...