George Washington Papers

From George Washington to William Smallwood, 6 October 1787

To William Smallwood

Mount Vernon 6th Octr 1787.

Dear Sir,

When I had the pleasure of being at your house last fall, you gave me reason to believe that you would become the purchaser of my land adjoining yours, in Charles County—And if I recollect rightly, was to have written me on that subject from Annapolis.

I am still disposed to part with this tract; and wish you could make it convenient to be the purchaser thereof.1

I told you in the conversation we had on this subject before, that I would endeavor to make the payments as easy as my own circumstances would admit—I now repeat it—and if you have corn to dispose of, at a moderate price, I would take at least 500 Barrls in payment; also Wheat (if good, clean, & free from the Fly) delivered at my Mill, to which Boats can come, at the cash price in Alexandria. Your answer by the bearer would much oblige Dear Sir Your most Obedt Hble Servt

Go: Washington

ALS, NjP: De Coppet Collection; LB, DLC:GW. The ALS is addressed “By Mr J no. Fairfax.”

1Smallwood did not buy from GW the 552½-acre tract in Charles County, Md., which GW acquired from Daniel Jenifer Adams in December 1775. See Smallwood to GW, 6 April 1784, and notes. Before he went to Philadelphia, GW wrote and signed this statement: “On Monday the 12th day of Septr 1785 A Mr Caywood, or some person in his behalf, presented an acct of Taxes, or the claims of the public for some Land I have in Charles County Maryland, which was the first application ever made to me, for the same. Whether previously, or subsequent to, that period any demand was ever made of Mr Lund Washington who had charge of my business till the close of that year for them is more than I can determine—but, no doubt, can be resolved by him. Given under my hand at Mount Vernon this 30th day of March 1787. Go: Washington” (ADS, DLC:GW).

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