George Washington Papers

[Diary entry: 20 May 1760]

Tuesday May 20th. Being Court day Mr. Clifton’s Land in the Neck was exposd to Sale and I bought it for £1210 Sterlg. & under many threats and disadvantages paid the Money into the Comrs. hands and returnd home at Night with Colo. Fairfax & Famy. Captn. Dalton’s Dun Mare again Covd.

The final decree of the General Court in chancery (decree, Clifton v. Carroll et al., 12 April 1760, NjWdHi) ordered that the commissioners on 20 May at Alexandria sell at public auction to the highest bidder the lands in Clifton’s Neck and that Clifton’s creditors then be paid off. The “threats and disadvantages” to GW came from all sides. Thomson Mason threatened to appeal the sale decree; Ignatius Digges and Charles Carroll refused to show up at all to deliver their mortgages, thus barring GW from a clear title; and Carroll had already decided to appeal the case to the Privy Council in London (Charles Carroll of Annapolis to Charles Carroll of Carrollton, 26 April, 4 July 1762, CARROLL description begins Charles Carroll of Annapolis and Charles Carroll of Carrollton. “Extracts from the Carroll Papers.” Maryland Historical Magazine 10 (1915): 143-59, 218-58, 322-44; 11 (1916): 66-73, 175-89, 261-78, 322-69; 12 (1917): 21-41, 166-87, 276-96, 347-69; 13 (1918): 54-75, 171-79, 249-67; 14 (1919): 137-54, 272-93, 358-71; 15 (1920): 56-65, 194-201, 274-91; 16 (1921): 29-42. description ends , 264–69). Finally, Clifton declared he would not vacate the land until 1762, which, among other problems, threatened GW with a two-year loss of rent from the Clifton’s Neck tenant farmers (Robert Carter Nicholas and George Wythe to GW, 27 May 1760, anonymous donor).

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