George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Samuel Hanson, 12 January 1786

From Samuel Hanson

Alexandria Jany 12th 1786


When I had last the pleasure of seeing you at Mount-Vernon, you expressed an inclination to peruse the Pamphlets of the Revd Messrs Wharton & Carroll, upon the subject of their religious Controversy. Immediately on my return I wrote to Baltimore for them, but without being able to obtain Mr Carroll’s reply. I have hope of procuring it at Annapolis. In the meantime, lest you should suppose me inattentive to your Commands, I forward the Pieces of Mr Wharton, not doubting that Mr Carroll’s reply may be had at Annapolis, where it was printed.1 I beg my Compliments to your lady and remain, with great respect, Sir Your most obedient Servant

S. Hanson of Saml


1While chaplain to the Roman Catholics at Worcester in England, Charles Henry Wharton (1749–1833), a native of St. Mary’s County, Md., left the communion of the Roman Catholic church and in 1783 returned to Maryland. In 1784 he published A Letter to the Roman Catholics of the City of Worcester . . . Stating the Motives Which Induced Him to Relinquish Their Communion, and Become a Member of the Protestant Church (Philadelphia). In response, the Rev. John Carroll (1735–1815) published An Address to the Roman Catholics of the United States of America (Annapolis, 1784), which evoked in turn Wharton’s A Reply to an Address to the Roman Catholics of the United States of America (Philadelphia, 1785). Wharton became a distinguished Episcopal clergyman, and Carroll became archbishop in the Roman Catholic church. Samuel Hanson of Samuel was at this time a merchant in Alexandria.

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