George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Robert Donald, 6 June 1793

From Robert Donald

Monblon June 6th 1793

Will your Exellancy Permitt a fourty years agoe Aquentance to Sollicate your notice of the bearer Mr Jas D. Smith (my Nephew) who has been for some years an Inhabitant of your Province, and who I belive Intends removeing to your City of Washington, where under your Paternage I flatter myself he may push his way in your Riseing States, much better then I was able after a Seventeen years residance.1

My first Aquantance with Your Exellancy was at our Mutuall Werthy friend Governour Dinwiddies on your return from the Ohio in I think 1751 or 2 and next day I had the Honour of your Compy to my residance at Pages in Hanover County,2 and was afterwards often in your Compy at Wmburg untill I left the Country with the Governours Family in the year 1758—all of whom are now dead except little Beckie who is married to a Mr Hamilton and resides in London.3 I want words to Apolegise for this Freedom and have the Honour to be with Unspeakable Esteem & regard Your Exellancy most obedient and most Faithfull humble Servant

Robert Donald


1Robert Donald was probably a merchant associated with the Glasgow, Scotland, firm of Robert and James Donald.

2In the fall of 1753 Virginia governor Robert Dinwiddie (1693–1770) had commissioned GW to deliver a letter petitioning the French commandant in the Ohio country for the removal of French troops from lands claimed by Virginia. GW left Williamsburg on 31 Oct., delivered the letter to the French commandant, Jacques Le Gardeur, sieur de Saint-Pierre (1701–1755), on 12 Dec., and he returned to Williamsburg on 16 Jan. 1754 for a meeting with Dinwiddie later that date. For background on this expedition and for GW’s commission, instructions, and passport, all dated 30 Oct. 1753, see Papers, Colonial Series description begins W. W. Abbot et al., eds. The Papers of George Washington, Colonial Series. 10 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1983–95. description ends , 1:56–62. For GW’s journal of this expedition, see Diaries description begins Donald Jackson and Dorothy Twohig, eds. The Diaries of George Washington. 6 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1976–79. description ends , 1:118–61. Page’s, on the Pamunkey River, was a public warehouse for the inspection of tobacco.

3Dinwiddie, his wife Rebecca Auchinleck (d. 1793), and his daughters Elizabeth (1738–1773) and Rebecca (born c.1741) set sail for England on 12 Jan. 1758. In 1771 Rebecca married Archibald Hamilton, who was from the Isle of Man.

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