George Washington Papers

Tobias Lear to William Deakins, Jr., 5 March 1791

Tobias Lear to William Deakins, Jr.

Philadelphia March 5th 1791


The President has directed me to enclose the within advertisement to you—and request that you will be good enough to hand one to the Printer at Georgetown, and forward the other to the Printer at Frederick Town, to be inserted in their papers for six weeks.1 I am Sir, very respectfully, Your most obedient Servant

Tobias Lear.


1The enclosure has not been found. The Georgetown newspaper to which Lear alludes was the Times, and Patowmack Packet. Only scattered issues survive, including one for 6 April 1791 owned by the American Antiquarian Society, but it contains no advertisement placed by Deakins on GW’s behalf. No copies of the Maryland Gazette, and Frederick Weekly Advertiser (which had begun publication in 1790) dated in March or April 1791 have been found. The advertisement may have involved efforts by GW and Deakins to acquire the town lots of Hamburgh, Md., which were mostly owned by residents of Montgomery, Frederick, and Washington counties (see GW to Deakins and Stoddert, 17 Feb. 1791). By the time they received this letter from Lear, Deakins, and Stoddert apparently had already obtained the consent of many of the Hamburgh proprietors to convey their land to the government, which would have rendered the published advertisement superfluous. Deakins and Stoddert apparently reported their success with the Hamburgh proprietors in their letter to GW of 11 Mar. 1791, which has not been found (see GW to Deakins and Stoddert, 17 Mar. 1791).

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