George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Betty Washington Lewis, 8 April 1793

From Betty Washington Lewis

[Fredericksburg, Va.] April 8th 1793

My Dear Brother

your Letter with the Advertisement Came safe to hand but was two late for the last weeks Paper, but will be inserted in this, and to be Continued the time you direct’d, the Printers Charge is 7/61 I intended to write by Cosin washington but her stay was so short that I had not time I desired her to inform you that Harriot was in want of several things, sutch as Shoes Gloves and a Hat, Perhaps it may be more agreable to you to get them in Alexandria, if not I beleive they may be Purchas’d as Cheap here as any Place, I keep an Exact memorandum of every article that is got and will send it you the money sent from Philadelphia Purchas’d her a dress for the Birthnight, it must of appear’d Perticular had I refused to let her go, and her haveing nothing fit for that Purpose Oblig’d me to lay out that money for that dress, Harriot desires her love with mine to you and Cousin Washington.2 I am Dear Brother Your Affectionate Sister

Betty Lewis

P.S. if you Can send me a Tick. in the Washington Lottery I will Send you the Money by the first safe hand.3

ALS, ViMtvL.

1The letter from GW to Betty Lewis has not been found. The enclosed advertisement for the stud services of GW’s jackass Knight of Malta and horse Traveller ran in the Virginia Herald & Fredericksburg Advertiser of 4, 11, and 18 April (GW to Anthony Whitting, 26 Mar., and note 2).

2The cousin was Frances (“Fanny”) Bassett Washington, who passed through Fredericksburg on her way to Mount Vernon. Both Fanny and GW were at Mount Vernon by the time Lewis wrote this letter (F. B. Washington to GW, 28 Mar., GW to James Craik, 9 April). GW financially supported his late brother Samuel’s daughter Harriot, and he previously had warned his sister, with whom she currently was living, about the young woman’s fondness for expensive clothing (GW to Lewis, 7 Oct. 1792). On 22 Feb., Harriot had attended a gala at Fredericksburg held in commemoration of GW’s birthday (Harriot Washington to GW, 5 Jan. 1793, and notes 1–2).

3For more information on the lottery involving the Federal City, see D.C. Commissioners to GW, 9 April 1793 (second letter), and note 1.

Index Entries