George Washington Papers

[Diary entry: 7 June 1791]

Tuesday 7th. Left Colo. Coles by day break, and breakfasted at Charlotte Ct. Ho. 15 Miles1 where I was detained sometime to get Shoes put on such horses as had lost them. Proceeded afterwards to Prince Edward Court House 20 Miles further.

The Lands from Coles ferry on2 Staunton to Charlotte Ct. Ho. are in genl. good; & pretty thickly settled. They are3 cultivated chiefly in Tobo. wheat & Corn, with Oats & flax. The Houses (tho’ none elegt.) are in genl. decent, & bespeak4 good livers; being for the most part weatherboarded & Shingled, with brick Chimnies—but from Charlotte Ct. Ho.5 to Prince Edward Ct. Ho. the lands are of an inferior quality with few6 inhabitants7 in sight of the Road.8 It is said they are thick settled off it, the Roads by keeping the Ridges pass on the most indifferent ground.

Richard N. Venable (1763–1838), a Peytonsburg lawyer who was at Charlotte Court House on 6 June 1791, noted in his diary the “great Anxiety in the people to see Genl. Washington. Strange is the impulse which is felt by almost every breast, to see the face of a Great good man & one of whom we have heard much spoken” (Richard N. Venable Diary, ViHi). Established in 1765, Charlotte Court House remains the seat of Charlotte County (GAINES [2] description begins William H. Gaines, Jr. “Courthouses of Bedford and Charlotte Counties.” Virginia Cavalcade 21 (Summer 1971): 5–13. description ends , 7).

Prince Edward Court House, established 1754, was at the site of present-day Worsham, about six miles south of Farmville, the present county seat (GAINES [3] description begins William H. Gaines, Jr. “Courthouses of Prince Edward and Nottoway Counties.” Virginia Cavalcade 20 (Autumn 1970): 40–46. description ends , 41). Venable was at Prince Edward Court House today and reported that the way where GW was expected to pass was crowded with people “anxious to see the Saviour of their Country & object of their love” (Richard N. Venable Diary, ViHi).

1“15 Miles” inserted above line.

2“Coles ferry on” inserted above line.

3“They are” substituted for “&.”

4“bespeak” substituted for “indicative of.”

5“Ct. Ho.” added above line.

6“or no” deleted.

7“with” deleted.

8“Tho” deleted.

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