George Washington Papers

From George Washington to William Jackson, 14 October 1791

To William Jackson

Mount Vernon Octr 14th 1791

Dear Sir

With pleasure I received your letter of the 9th, and am obliged by the communications therein contained.11 have written regularly to Mr Lear once a week, some times oftener, on business; but can do little more than drop him or you a line by this Post, as the unexpected discovery that the 24th, instead of the 31st instt is the day appointed for the meeting of Congress, obliges me to bestow every attention in my power to the things I conceive necessary to communicate, & recommend to that body. I allowed, as I conceived, a whole week to digest these matters after I should have arrived in Philadelphia, instead of which (as my movements depend upon Page’s Coach) I shall scarcely have two days after that arrival, to prepare myself for Congress.

Unless Lord Wycombe should arrive here as this day or tomorrow I shall not have it in my power to shew him the civilities I could wish either at Mount Vernon or in Philadelphia (if he does not return to the latter place again)—a circumstance I shall regret. My present hurry will not allow me to add more than the good wishes of all this family, which, at present is numerous; and assurances of the sincere friendship and regard of Your Affecte Hble Servt

Go: Washington

ALS, PHi: Society Collection.

1William Jackson’s letter of 9 Oct. from Philadelphia reads: “A reluctance to trespass on time, so valuably engaged as yours is, with the perusal of an uninteresting letter, has until now restrained the expression of my respect—But, lest longer silence should suffer a construction unfavorable to the most respectful and affectionate attachment—I beg permission, for a few moments, to present myself at Mount-Vernon. Mr Lear’s letters detail to you, more accurately, than I might be able to do, the occurrences which are most worthy of your attention. The affairs of Philadelphia, as far as I am acquainted with them, would afford neither amusement, nor information—The approaching election of Representatives to Congress, and to the State Legislature, which is to be held on tuesday next, appears to excite the solicitude of the Candidates, and the exertions of their friends. It is said there will be no opposition to Mr [Thomas] Fitz Simons—and it is thought that the late Speaker, Mr [Frederick Augustus Conrad] Muhlenberg, will be elected for the district composed of Philadelphia and Buck’s counties—General [John Peter Gabriel] Muhlenberg is a candidate for the district of Chester and Montgomery counties—but it is supposed he will be outvoted by a Mr [John] Hannams [Hannens] of Chester county. It is believed that Mr [Thomas] Hartley and Mr [Daniel] Heister [Hiester] will be re-elected—There is less certainty in the other elections, though it is thought that Mr [William] Findley will succeed Mr [Thomas] Scott—his competitor, Mr [John] Woods, it is said, has injured his own interest, by an attempt at popularity, as a Committee-man in Washington county on the remonstrance against the excise-law. Young Mr [Edward] Shippen is a Candidate to represent the City in the State-Legislature. Concurring accounts from Europe wear the aspect of a pacification between the Russians and the Turks—The Empress, they say, maintains her first propositions. Rumor speaks of a combination of Courts against the French revolution, the probability of which is considerably abated by the reflection that their armies will be exposed to the double danger of seduction and force—The opposition of interests among the Sovereigns of Europe, and the union which external interference and invasion would certainly produce among the French, are likewise strong contradictions of this supposed league. The Marquis of Landsdown’s eldest Son, Lord Wycombe, is now in Philadelphia—he is a well looking young man of about twenty six years of age, plain in his manners, very correct in his conversation, which speaks him to be well informed—he expresses himself very much pleased with America—he has the misfortune to be very deaf. I have heard him say that he anticipated, with great pleasure, the honor of paying his respects to you. He leaves Philadelphia some time this week on his way southward” (DLC:GW). For Lord Wycombe and his tour of America, see GW to Lansdowne, 7 Nov., n.2.

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