To Alexander Spotswood
West-point Sepr 15th 1779.
I shall be obliged by your informing me whether it has yet been in your power to provide another horse or Mare for me—Bleu-skin has been threatned with a fistula more than three Months, so that I have had no use of him. The Sorrel has, in no great degree altered in flesh or appearance since you saw him at Middle brooke. and the Mare is with foal—out of the three therefore I have scarce one for use.
If you have not already purchased the fourth horse or Mare for me I shall be obliged to you for letting him or her (for it is indifferent to me which it is) be stouter than the other three—neither of which is compleatly master of my weight—and I shall be still more obliged to you for confining the colour to a good bay.1
ALS (retained copy), DLC:GW; Varick transcript, DLC:GW.
1. For Spotswood’s efforts to obtain suitable horses for GW, pursuant to a Virginia general assembly resolution of 24 Nov. 1778, see Spotswood to GW, 8 March, 15 April, and 27 Sept. 1779. See also Spotswood to GW, 26 Oct., 21 Nov., and 3 Dec. 1779; and GW to Spotswood, 10 Nov. and 15 Dec. 1779, all DLC:GW.
2. Spotswood’s wife, Elizabeth Washington Spotswood (1749–1814), was the eldest daughter of GW’s half brother Augustine.
3. GW apparently was offering greetings to Alexander Spotswood’s mother and Martha Washington’s cousin, Mary Dandridge Spotswood Campbell (c.1725–1795). After the death of her first husband, John Spotswood (1725–1758), she married John Campbell of Jamaica, but he subsequently deserted her; see Jonathan Boucher to GW, c.3 March 1770, in Papers, Colonial Series, description begins W. W. Abbot et al., eds. The Papers of George Washington, Colonial Series. 10 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1983–95. description ends 8:309–11.