George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Samuel A. Otis, Jr., May 1793

From Samuel A. Otis, Jr.

Cape Francois [Saint Domingue] May 1793


Impress’d with the most perfect sense of your every attention to the interests of the Citizens of America, in every part of the world I am induced to observe that in the present state of European Politics, the appointment of Consul from the United States to the Island of St Domingo, would be of great benefit to the Commercial interests of America: should you in your wisdom be pleased to take this subject into consideration I take the liberty to observe that from a residence of seven years and a commercial establishment of two years in this place, I am induced to solicit the appointment above mention’d, with assurances that should you in your wisdom see proper to grant my request, my every exertion shall be used to prove myself worthy of th[e] confidence reposed in me,1 and of the honor of subscribing myself with Sentiments of respe[ct] and Gratitude Sir Your respectful, and very humble Se[rvt]

Saml. A. Otis J[r.]


1Massachusetts native Samuel Otis, Jr. (1768–1814), apparently enclosed this letter for forwarding to GW in one addressed to his father, Samuel A. Otis, Sr., who received it on 13 June 1793. That same day the senior Otis, then at Philadelphia, wrote Thomas Jefferson a letter of recommendation for his son (DLC:GW; abstracted in Jefferson Papers, description begins Julian P. Boyd et al., eds. The Papers of Thomas Jefferson. 40 vols. to date. Princeton, N.J., 1950–. description ends 26:277–78). Otis did not receive this consular appointment. The post, which Sylvanus Bourne had resigned in 1791, remained unfilled until GW nominated Jacob Mayer of Pennsylvania to the position in 1796 (GW to U.S. Senate, 30 May 1796, LS, DNA: RG 46, Fourth Congress, 1795–1797, Senate Records of Executive Proceedings, President’s Messages—Executive Nomination, and LB, DLC:GW).

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