Alexander Hamilton Papers

To Alexander Hamilton from John B. Church, 5 April 1786

From John B. Church

London April 5th 1786

My Dear Sir

I am in your Debt and have to thank you for your Letters of the 24 Novr. 6 Decr. & 1st Feby.1 I left Directions at Sir Robt. Herries’s2 that in Case the Baron Polnitz3 did not Pay the Bill you had drawn on him to send the Holder of it to me and that I would take it up for your Honor, as I have heard nothing from them since I hope it is Paid. Your last brought me a Bill of Lading for £782.10.8 Phila Curry. for which I thank you. I shall be very glad if you could succeed in getting my Money out of the Bank, for after the unwarrantable Lengths they have gone in assisting Wilson I do not think the Property can with Propriety be confided to their management.4

I think you have done the best with Respect to Moses’s Matters and I am and shall be perfectly satisfied with whatever you think best to do in those Affairs.5 With Respect to Kinloch6 I wrote him that if he would Renew the Bond and Pay me the Interest annually and Punctually in London I had no Objection to let the Principal Remain ⟨some⟩ Years longer. You have the Copy of my Letters both to him and Bowman.7 I have not Received a Line from either of them. I wish they could be forced to discharge their Debts to me. What has Troop done with Jacob Cuyler?8 Is the Money yet Recover’d from him? As to the Land9 I should be glad to have it disposed of as well and as soon as possible for as long as it Remains unsold it is a certain annual Loss of the Interest of the Money and I have not the least Disposition to build, and I would sooner take £2000 for it than not get Rid of it if more cannot be obtained.

Mrs. Church is well; in about two Months she will give me another Boy or Girl; she joins in Love to Mrs. Hamilton and in wishing her well over her trying Time. Jack10 is grown a fine Boy; he is now at a pleasant Villa which I have purchas’d on the Banks of the Thames three miles from Windsor where we shall soon Repair to pass the Summer. I am My Dear Sir   Your very affectionate Friend & Serv

J B Church

Alexr Hamilton Esqr.

ALS, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress.

1Letters not found.

2Probably Sir Robert Herries, the founder of the banking firm of Herries, Farquhar and Company, London.

3Friedrich, Baron von Poellnitz, operated an experimental farm outside New York City. H managed both his business and personal affairs.

4For an account of James Wilson’s relations with the Bank of North America, see Jeremiah Wadsworth to H, January 9, 1786.

5The bankruptcy of Isaac Moses, New York merchant, is described in H to Wadsworth, April 7, 1785; and Wadsworth to H, April 17, 1785.

6For an account of Church’s business accounts with Francis and Cleland Kinloch, see H to Nathanael Greene, June 10, 1783; and Cleland Kinlock to H, September 20, 1785.

7Mr. Bowman was presumably the John Bowman about whom Hamilton had written to John Fitzgerald on June 10, 1783.

8Robert Troup, who at this time practiced law in New York City, presumably had been employed by Church to collect money from Jacob Cuyler. Like Church, Cuyler had been engaged during the Revolution in supplying the Continental Army.

9For information on the land Church wished to sell, see H to Church, March 10, 1784; and H to Wadsworth, October 29, 1785.

10The “Jack” mentioned was probably John B. Church, second son of John B. and Angelica Church. He was born in 1779 in Boston. At this time the Churches had two other children, Philip who was born in 1778, and Catherine who was born c. 1780.

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