George Washington Papers

From George Washington to John Tayloe, 31 October 1774

To John Tayloe

Mount Vernon Octr 31st 1774

Dear Sir

As I return’d late last Night from Philadelphia, It will not be in my power, with any sort of convenience, to attend the assembly (in case of its setting, which, as I have heard nothing of the Governors return, seems doubtful)1 till after the Sale of Colo. Mercers Estates; and therefore, as I can have no oppertunity of seeing you before, permit me to hope, & indeed press you, to be there; as many things may, & doubtless will happen, to render your advice & assistance absolutely necessary. In short, as the times are ticklish, I shall be very unwilling to take the whole burthen of this Trust upon myself, & to delay the Sale, after such long, & full notice of it, will be improper, & no doubt injurious. please to bring what Letters, & Papers you are possess’d of relative to this business, as I have not receivd a Letter, or heard a Tittle from Mr Montagu, since that one Inclosing the Power of Attorney 18 Months ago.2 I am Dr Sir Yr Most Obedt Servt

Go: Washington

ALS (photocopy), Sotheby’s catalog no. 5530, item 86, 15 Dec. 1986. The letter was “Recomd. to the care of James Mercer Esq[uire].”

1The burgesses elected in July 1774 did not meet until 1 June 1775.

2Preparation for the sale of George Mercer’s property by his Virginia trustees, GW and John Tayloe, began the year before. See GW to Tayloe, 20 Aug. 1773, n.1. GW, without Tayloe, held the sales of Mercer’s property on 21–22 and 24–30 November. See GW to Tayloe, 30 Nov., n.2. Edward Montagu’s letter of 29 Aug. was acknowledged by GW on 5 April 1775.

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