George Washington Papers

[Diary entry: 23 January 1771]

23. Waited at Colchester till 2 Oclock for Colo. Mason. Dined at Courts’s & went to Dumfries afterwards & to the Play of the Recruitg. Officer. Lodgd at Mr. Montgomeries.

William Courts kept an inn, commonly called the Stone House, at the ferry landing in Colchester (Va. Gaz., P, 8 Sept. 1775). The Recruiting Officer: A Comedy, by George Farquhar, was a genial satire about the British army and its brutal recruiting system. First performed in London in 1706, the play was a great favorite of English and American audiences throughout the eighteenth century (FARQUHAR description begins Charles Stonehill, ed. The Complete Works of George Farquhar. 2 vols. 1930. Reprint. New York, 1967. description ends , 2:33–112). This production was staged by the American Company of Comedians, which had recently left Annapolis and would soon return to Williamsburg for the spring court days.

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