George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Hans Alexander Siegfried [von] Steuben, 3 March 1797

Philadelphia March 3rd 1797.


I received your letter dated the 1st of September last, inquiring for the fortune of your deceased Brother, Baron Steuben. A former application from some relation of the Baron led me to inquire how he disposed of his estate, and I found that the payment of debts and claims would absorb the greater part, and that the residue was given to some particular friends to whom he was attached, and who had been attached to him; especially during his service in the army of the United States. And it was even doubtful whether any thing would remain after his debts were paid.

To supercede any further inquiries of the kind, perhaps I ought to add, That although the pay and emoluments of the Baron from the United States were liberal, and supported him several Years after the close of the american war, yet possessed of a generous heart and accustomed to an expensive mode of living, he felt some embarrassements, until in the year 1790 Congress granted him a pension of 2,500 Dollars a year. From this he could make no saving; and whatever Estate he left behind him resulted from the bounty of particular States in grateful acknowledgment for the services he had rendered to the United States during the American War. I have the honor to be, with much respect sir Your obedient servant

DLC: Papers of George Washington.

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