George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Battaile Muse, 6 April 1789

To Battaile Muse

Mount Vernon April 6th 1789.


In an overhaul, and arrangement of my papers, I have found an agreement (and Bond for the performance of it) with your father; by which he was to convey all the right, title, and interest which he had in a tract of 7276 acres of Land on the Great Kanhawa, to me. This, I beleive, was accordingly done; but it runs in my mind (though Colo. Pendleton undertook to see to the recording of it)1 that the Deed has not been fully proved in the General Court. If this is the case, I have no doubt, if anything remains to be performed in order to secure the legal (for the equitable title is already passed) that your father, if living, or you, if he is not, as his heir at Law—will fulfil the agreement by a conveyance of the Land. As part of this Land was obtained by exchange for 2000 Acres I was to have from Colo. William Bronaugh in a tract of 7894 acres adjoining to the above tract of 7276 acres, and I have also found Colo. Bronaugh’s Bond to me, for making this conveyance; I should be glad to know whether such conveyance has ever passed from Colo. Bronaugh to your father or his representative, or devisee, if dead—If it has not already been done, Colo. Bronaugh, I am persuaded, is ready & willing to do it. If not, his Bond in the penalty of £2000, which I have, will compel him—and the sooner these matters are settled the better. Not knowing whether your father be living, and even in that event having no mode of communciation with him, I have taken the liberty of addressing you on the subject, and shall be obliged by your enquiry into the last mentioned matter. With respect to the first⟨,⟩ I am now writing to the Clerk of the Genl Court to be informed in what state the Conveyance from your father to me lyes2—and what steps are necessary for me to pursue if it is not full proven in the Court. I am, Sir, Yr very Hble Servt

Go: Washington


For the division of bounty lands discussed by GW in this letter, see GW to John Murray, earl of Dunmore, 5 Nov. 1773. The land was issued to George Muse and William Bronaugh for their service as officers in the Virginia Regiment during the French and Indian War.

1Edmund Pendleton (1721–1803), one of Virginia’s most prominent jurists, served on the colony’s committee of correspondence in 1773, represented the state in the Continental Congress, was a member of all of Virginia’s Revolutionary conventions, and supported the Constitution in the Virginia Ratifying Convention. Pendleton was not only GW’s friend but also acted as his attorney from time to time during the 1770s.

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