From Samuel Meredith
[Philadelphia] Thursday Morng Novr 1st 17921
The bearer will deliver agreeably to Mr Lears request 100 White Mulberry Trees taken out of Aspinwalls Nursery, they are untrimmed, as the other parts may be cut off when planted & stuck in the ground to produce Trees as well as the Main Standards,2 he will likewise deliver half of the Double eared Wheat recd from the Agricultural Society.3 I have the honor to be with Proper Respect Your Most humble Servt
1. The date is taken from the letter’s docket.
2. No written request from Tobias Lear to Meredith has been found. An article in the Pennsylvania Gazette (Philadelphia) on 13 May 1789 informed readers that “Mr. Nathaniel Aspinwall, full of the spirit of the silk culture, has for this end planted a nursery of fifty thousand trees in New-Haven [Conn.], and another in Kensington [Conn.], and is proceeding in this laudable work.” The following year, Aspinwall and Peter DeWitt placed an advertisement in the 28 April 1790 issue of the paper, advising readers that Aspinwall’s mulberry trees were available in the area: “THE inhabitants of Pennsylvania and New-Jersey, who wish to promote the agriculture and manufactures of their own country, are respectfully informed, that the subscribers are now ready to supply them with any quantity of young white Italian mulberry trees, from their Nursery, at Samuel Meredith, Esquire’s place, or Mr. Robert Towers’s, on the Ridge road and Poplar lane, about a mile and a half from the city of Philadelphia.” GW shipped the trees by boat to Mount Vernon, and on 11 Nov. he sent instructions for their planting to his farm manager Anthony Whitting.
3. GW forwarded the double-eared wheat to Mount Vernon with instructions for its planting (see GW to Anthony Whitting, 4 Nov. 1792). GW was a corresponding member of two agricultural societies in Philadelphia: the Philadelphia County Society for the Promotion of Agriculture and Domestic Manufactures, to which he was elected in 1789 (see Philadelphia County Society for Promotion of Agriculture and Domestic Manufactures to GW, 4 May 1789), and the Philadelphia Society for Promoting Agriculture, of which he had been a member since 1785 (see Samuel Powel to GW, 5 July 1785).