To George Gilpin
Philadelphia Feby 4th 1791
A pressure of public business just at the moment Mr Roberdeau was about to leave this, allowed me no time to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 28th Ulto—and now I have little more than to thank you for the communication which was given by it.
As the exactitude of the District called for a Scientific character I have engaged Mr Ellicot to make the Survey, and hope that every aid which you can give him, conveniently, will be afforded with chearfulness—with sincere esteem I remain—Dear Sir Yr Most Obedt Sert
For the background to this letter, see GW to Jefferson, 1 Feb. 1791, and George Gilpin to GW, 28 Jan. 1791. On 4 Feb. 1791 GW wrote much the same letter to William Hunter: “I thank you for the communication contained in your letter of the 28th ultimo. a pressure of public business would not allow me to say as much by Mr Roberdeau, who I did not wish to detain. an accurate survey of the ten miles square being a matter of moment I have engaged one of the most scientific characters we have (Mr Ellicot) to make it—I persuade myself that no aids he may want will be withheld by the corporation of Alexandria” (copy, ViMtvL).