George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Francis Fauquier, 17 June 1758

To Francis Fauquier

[Fort Loudoun, 17 June 1758]

To the Honble Francis Fauquir Govr of Virga
Honble Sir

Although but a poor hand at Complimenting, but permit me, nevertheless to offer your Honr my congratulations on your appointment; and safe arrival to a Government which his Majesty has been graciously pleasd to entrust to your Administration and to assure you, that ⟨I most⟩ sincerely wish your Administration may be attended with pleasure to yourself and ⟨benefit⟩ to the People Governed.

I flatter’d myself with the pleasure of seeing your Honour in Williamsburg, when I was down, but the business that carried me there was of too Urgent a Nature to admit of delay when I had once got it accomplishd.1 Mr President Blair has, no doubt, informd you of that business—of the State of the Troops here, and situation of other Affairs in this Quarter; I will not, therefore, trouble your Honr with a repetition of them; but Inclose you a Copy of the last Orders which I am preparing to execute with the greatest exactness. Sir John St Clair set out from hence for Connegocheague the 11th Instt, to which place I accompanied him by Summon’s from Colo. Bouquet. He proceeded on to Carlyle, and I returnd here; where at present I have the Honr to Command.2

I shall transmit your Honour, so soon as I leave this place (I cant well do it before, as alterations are continually happening while the Troops remain here) an exact return of our Stores, agreable to the Presidents Orders. Inclosd is a return of the Strength of the first Regiment3—I have directed one to be made out & sent of the 2d Also.

When I was down, the President was pleasd ⟨to forward⟩4 5 blank Commissions to compleat my Regiment with Officers; by mistake I got one less, and must therefore beg the favour of your Honour to send me one now; or, that you woud be pleasd to take the trouble yourself, of appointing Mr Jno. Lawson (who is the oldest Ensign, in my Regiment) to be Lieutenant in Lieutt Colo. Stephen’s Company, where there is a Vacancy.5 This woud have been done before, had not the above mistake happen’d.

I enclose your Honour the Pay Rolls of Captn Rutherfords Company of Rangers, and beg the favour of you to send the money to Mr Thos Rutherford of this place, and he will pay them of in behalf of his Brother, who, being in an ill state of health, got leave to visit Doctr Brown of Maryland, to consult him in the case, and is not yet returnd.6

When I was in Williamsburg last, I endeavourd to make Mr President Blair and the Council, sensible of the great want of Cloaths for the first Regiment; and how necessary it is to send to England for a Supply. they declind doing any thing in the case at that time, because the Funds granted by the late act of Assembly were almost exhausted7—But I hope it will not escape your Honrs notice if an Assembly shoud be calld. Field equipage of all kinds will also be wanting, and will come better & much cheaper from ⟨there⟩: Colo. Byrd is ⟨erasure8 wanting Cloaths for his Men, if we shoud be late taking the Field; but his redress must be immediate or else useless, as that Regiment by Law will be discharged the first Day of December next—I have the Honr to subscribe myself with gt Respect Yr Hrs most Obedt Hble Servt

Go: Washington

LB (original), DLC:GW; LB (recopied), DLC:GW. GW sent this letter of 17 June at the same time he sent Fauquier his letter of 19 June.

1Fauquier arrived in the colonial capital to begin his ten years as lieutenant governor of Virginia on 5 June. This was the day that GW left Martha Custis’s house in New Kent County on his return to Fort Loudoun from Williamsburg. For GW’s mission to Williamsburg, see particularly GW to Adam Stephen, 24 May 1758, n.2.

2The “last” orders are presumably those contained in St. Clair to GW, 13 June. For the meeting of GW, Bouquet, St. Clair, and Horatio Sharpe at Conococheague in Maryland, see GW to Bouquet, Bouquet to GW, both 13 June, and notes for both documents.

3No regimental returns for this time have been found, but for the return of the five companies of the 1st Virginia Regiment at Pearsal’s fort on 28 June en route with GW from Fort Loudoun to Fort Cumberland, see GW to Bouquet, 3 July (first letter), n.1.

4In the original letter book, GW erased the words “to forward” and wrote over the erasure “to promise me.”

5John Lawson, a protégé of Landon Carter, served as a volunteer in the Virginia Regiment in 1756 until he was made an ensign in October of that year. After his promotion in 1758, he stayed with the regiment until 1762.

6Robert Rutherford of the rangers wrote GW about his illness on 6 June. His brother Thomas Rutherford was deputy at Winchester both to Indian agent Christopher Gist and to Commissary Thomas Walker. Gustavus Brown of Charles County, Md., was the doctor whom GW tried to summon when he returned ill to Alexandria in the fall of 1757.

7On 2 June President Blair and the Virginia council considered GW’s letter of 28 May to Blair, setting out the needs of his regiment. It was then that they agreed that “Regimental Cloathing can’t be sent for before the Meeting of the Assembly, no Money being provided for it” (Exec. Journals of Virginia Council description begins H. R. McIlwaine et al., eds. Executive Journals of the Council of Colonial Virginia. 6 vols. Richmond, 1925–66. description ends , 6:96–99). For a description of the actions Blair and the council did take, see GW to Blair, 28 May, n.11.

8GW appears to have erased the word or words here and written over the erasure in his later hand the words “apprehensive his.”

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