George Washington Papers

To George Washington from John Kirkpatrick, 6 July 1758

From John Kirkpatrick

Winchester 6th July 1758

Dear Sir

I received your very welcome favour from Pearsals—and embrace your kind offers of Correspondence, with the highest pleasure—truely sensible of the Honour you do me.1

The disapointment I met with in not seeing you before marchg gave me much concern—and your necessary hurry, plague and perplexities—attending the preparations for the field—plead an excuse for not writing you—satisfied of your dispositions to think me uncapable of declining a Friendship which every Motive of Gratitude bids me esteem in the warmest manner—and this kind instance Confirms me, I share your friendly regard—in condescending to Communicate your intelligence, and make me a Correspondant—’tis a favour I greatly Value—and will omit no means on my part to continue and Establish a lasting intercourse.

You have no doubt, many disagreable & fatiguing Matters to engage with—’tis the case of a Military profession—which your good sense and prudence enables you to support wt. wonder—By this time I suppose You [are] at Rays town—from whence a Road we hear is to be open’d to Fort Cumberland—and thro’ that Fort the Rout of Your Army is intended—we are also told the General is got to the Camp—tho’ Report’s are very false.

Our news here and below—are very triffling—Election of Burgesses take up the whole talk at present—this County Chuse their Representatives the 24th inst.—when your presence will avail Vastly to accomplish your point—the promises of the Vulgar are too precarious to build your hopes upon—unless you coud Attend to influence their performance—they entertain a notion of the inconvenience you lye under of attending the Assembly and defending them at the sametime—but, you coud Speedily reconcile that paradox was it suitable to be here.2

The candidates for Fairfax are Colo. Mason—Chas Broadwater and Geo. Johnston—the days of Election for Loudoun & Fairfax happen both the 20th—which will weaken Colo. Lee’s interest, & it is thought occasion him to be Dropt.3

Yesterday 120 North Carolina Men arrived here—they waite orders, for Some necessarys to enable them for following you4—Winchester has lost its attractions wt. me, since your departure—All are Dull & dead—Tho’ the Court call’d me hither—on Business5 yet I am uneasy to begone—When Your Complements shall be duely deliverd your Friends—Continue Your Correspondence & believe me unfeign’dly Dr Colo. Your Sincere Servt & Obliged

Jno. Kirkpatrick


1GW was at Job Pearsal’s fort on 28–29 June. His letter to Kirkpatrick has not been found.

2See Gabriel Jones to GW, this date, for a similar analysis of the state of GW’s candidacy for a seat in the House of Burgesses from Frederick County.

3GW’s neighbors George Mason of Gunston Hall and George Johnston of Belvale replaced George William Fairfax and John West, who apparently were not candidates, as representatives of Fairfax County in the House of Burgesses. Charles Broadwater (d. 1806), who as a captain in the Fairfax militia was with GW in Winchester briefly in May 1756, was elected with GW in 1775 from Fairfax County in the last Burgess election before the Revolution. Francis Lightfoot Lee (1734–1797), son of Thomas Lee of Stratford, was at this time the county lieutenant of the newly created county of Loudoun, and he was elected to the House of Burgesses from Loudoun in the upcoming election.

4For a discussion of the North Carolina companies in Forbes’s expedition, see St. Clair to GW, 22 June 1758, n.3.

5Kirkpatrick appeared in court on 4 July to bring suit for debt against a Robert Stewart (Frederick County Order Book, 1758–60, f. 47, Vi Microfilm).

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