George Washington Papers

[Diary entry: 28 March 1774]

28. Doctr. Craik went away after Breakfast. I went up to Alexandria to the Sale of the Anne & Elizabeth which I bought myself at the price of £175. Returnd home in the Afternoon.

This purchase was in consequence of the voyage of the brigantine Fairfax to the West Indies in the summer of 1772, carrying a cargo of herring and flour which GW had placed in the care of Daniel Jenifer Adams (see main entry for 22 July 1772). After selling the cargo, Adams bought the Fairfax from the captain, renamed it the Anne and Elizabeth (in honor, apparently, of his sisters). It was not until the end of Feb. 1774 that GW was, by court order, finally able to get the brig to Alexandria, “within Thirty days after her arrival at which place if Mr. Daniel Jenifer Adams did not pay my demand agreeably to the terms of the Bottomry Bond I am to dispose of the Vessell” (GW to Thomas Pollock, 29 Nov. 1773, DLC:GW). GW later recorded that “after laying a Month agreeable to the terms of the Bond and being Advertized for Sale during that time . . . I was compelld to buy it in myself . . . much against my Inclination, as I had no desire of being concernd in Shipping.” GW renamed the brig the Farmer and sent it off to the West Indies in May with another cargo of herring and flour (GW to Robert McMickan, 10 May 1774, DLC:GW; General Ledger B description begins General Ledger B, 1772–1793. Library of Congress, George Washington Papers, Series 5, Financial Papers. description ends , folio 57, 99, 117). GW alternately called this craft a brig and a brigantine, although by this time these were two distinct types of vessels. Both were two-masted, square-rigged vessels, but the brigantine differed from the brig in not carrying a square mainsail.

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