George Washington Papers

[Diary entry: 5 January 1772]

5. Returnd home. Mr. Fairfax came with me. A Mr. Willis, & a Rhode Island Captn. dind here. The two latter went away afterwards.

Francis Willis, Jr. (1745–1829), son of John Willis (1719–1769) of Brunswick County, apparently lived in Leesburg at this time (Willis to GW, 16 Aug. 1773 and 17 Oct. 1773, ViMtvL). He later moved to Berkeley County and eventually settled in Georgia (see “Remarks” entry for 5 Jan. 1772).

The Rhode Island captain was probably John Howland, master of the sloop Nelly of Nantucket, which entered the Potomac River in late Dec. 1771 from Rhode Island with a cargo of British goods, loaf sugar, chocolate, iron and wood ware, and 2,500 pounds of cheese (P.R.O., C.O.5/1350, f. 107).

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