Tobias Lear to Henry Knox
U.S. [Philadelphia] Marh 25. 1793
By the Presdent’s command T. Lear has the honor to transmit to the Secy of War a lettr from O. Pollock & Jno. Nicholson Esqs. requesting to be furnished with copies of certain parts of the treaty lately made by Genl Putnam with the Illonois & Wabash Indians1—to wh. the President requests the Secretary will give an Answer to the effect of the enclosed sketch, wh. was intended to have been written by the Presidt; but upon reflection, he thot it wd be most proper that the Answr shd go from the Secy of War.2
ADfS, DLC:GW; LB, DLC:GW.
1. Pennsylvania residents Oliver Pollock and John Nicholson wrote GW on 23 Mar. in behalf of the Illinois and Wabash Land Company. GW received this letter that same date, but it has not been found. The company wanted a copy of the recent treaty negotiated by Gen. Rufus Putnam with the Illinois and Wabash Indians “in order to see if there is not something therein wh. militates with the rights of that Comy” (JPP, description begins Dorothy Twohig, ed. The Journal of the Proceedings of the President, 1793–1797. Charlottesville, Va., 1981. description ends 102). On the treaty concluded on 27 Sept. 1792, see GW to Knox, 3 Sept. 1792 (first letter), and note 3, and Knox to GW, 7 Nov. 1792, and note 1. For the treaty, see ASP, Indian Affairs, description begins Walter Lowrie et al., eds. American State Papers. Documents, Legislative and Executive, of the Congress of the United States. 38 vols. Washington, D.C., Gales and Seaton, 1832–61. description ends 1:338. On the Illinois and Wabash Land Company and its interest in this treaty, see Benjamin Hawkins to GW, 11 Jan. 1793, and notes. For GW’s reaction to Pollock’s attempt in January to contact members of the delegation from the Wabash and Illinois Indians then in Philadelphia, see JPP, description begins Dorothy Twohig, ed. The Journal of the Proceedings of the President, 1793–1797. Charlottesville, Va., 1981. description ends 37. See also GW’s previous instructions of 12 Jan., ibid., 11.
2. Lear’s copy of GW’s draft of a letter to Pollock and Nicholson of 25 Mar., which appears at the bottom of Lear’s draft letter to Knox, reads, “I have delayed answerg your lettr of the 23d inst. until I had given the subjt of it a full consideration: the result of wh. is, that, as the late treaty made by Genl Putnam w[it]h the Illonois & Wabash Inds. has been laid before the Senate of the U.S. for their approbation, I do not feel my self authorized to permit a copy of the whole or any parts thereof, or of the proceedgs relative therto to be given, until it has met the decision of that Body” (DLC:GW).