George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Richard Henry Lee, 20 February 1787

To Richard Henry Lee

MOUNT VERNON, February 20, 1787.

Dear Sir—Your favour of the 15th, with the seed of the honey locust came safe to hand, and claims my particular thanks.1 I have but one doubt of its forming the best hedge in the world; and that is, whether it can be sufficiently dwarfed. If this cannot be effected, the other purpose mentioned in your letter, and a valuable one too, of subserving stock, is alone sufficient to induce the cultivation of the tree.

Mrs. Washington offers respectful compliments to Mrs. Lee, to whom, though I have not the honour of being known, I beg leave to tender mine;2 we both join in best wishes for you, and the young ladies, and with great esteem and respect, I have the honour to be, dear sir, Your most obedient and affectionate servant.


Memoir of Richard Henry Lee, description begins Richard H. Lee. Memoir of the Life of Richard Henry Lee, and His Correspondence with the Most Distinguished Men in America and Europe, Illustrative of their Characters, and of the Events of the American Revolution. 2 vols. Philadelphia, 1825. description ends 2:34–35.

1Letter not found. GW had seeds of the honey locust sowed on 23 April “behind the Stables” (Diaries description begins Donald Jackson and Dorothy Twohig, eds. The Diaries of George Washington. 6 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1976–79. description ends , 5:142).

2Lee’s second wife was Anne Gaskins Pinckard Lee, to whom he had been married since 1769.

Index Entries