New York May 31st 1789.
I have received your letter of the 26th1—and must inform you, that however desireous I may be to releive the wants of those who have served this country in a military or civil line—Yet the multiplicity of these applications would put it beyond the reach of my private fortune to gratify them—and as I receive no emoluments for my public services—and the expences which I have necessarily incurred by my late engagements in public life being all advanced by myself, you will readily perceive that it is not in my power to comply with your request.2 I am Sir &ca
Df, in the writing of Tobias Lear, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters; LB, DLC:GW. The draft is addressed to Lambert “at Mr Breton’s at the Golden Swan 3d Street” in Philadelphia.
Lambert may have been Toussaint de Lambert, who served in one of D’Estaing’s squadrons and retired in 1780. He took part in engagements in Rhode Island and was at the siege of Savannah. Lambert was a member of the French Society of the Cincinnati. He is perhaps the same Lambert who carried a letter from Lafayette to GW in 1782. Lafayette requested GW’s good offices in placing Lambert in an American regiment since he intended to remain permanently in America (Lafayette to GW, 1 Sept. 1782).
1. Letter not found.
2. For the arrangements on GW’s salary, see his letter to Christian Theodor Sigismund von Molitor and Georg Hermann Vulteius, 21 May 1789, n.1.