To James Duane1
[New York, May 7, 1790]
The form of the bill2 has been changed to day. He is to be paid 7000 Dollars & an annuity for life but the blank is not filled up. Nobody talks of less than 1500 Dollars. The Baron says his contract or nothing; but you & all his friends must join me in telling him that to act upon this would be to act like a boy. This must be done before you leave town.
Yr affect & Obling
ALS, New-York Historical Society, New York City.
1. For the background to this letter, see H’s “Report on the Memorial of Baron von Steuben, March 29, 1790, and Duane to H, May 7, 1790.
2. The bill to compensate von Steuben for his services in the American Revolution was passed by the House of Representatives on May 7, 1790, by a vote of 28 to 21. The bill provided for a payment of $7,000, an annuity of $2,706, and a land grant in the Northwest Territory (Journal of the House, I description begins Journal of the House of Representatives of the United States (Washington, 1826). description ends , 210–11).