From Samuel Hughes
Mount Pleasant [Md.], 19th August 1793
As soon as I had the honor of receiving your letter of the 15th Inst.1 I wrote to my neighbour Mr Smith who is much better acquainted with Mr Sappingtons character than myself as he had him employed for sometime as an overseer on part of Spesutia Island which Mr Smith had leased from me—enclosed you have his answer on which you may fully rely.2 from the general knowledge I have of Sappingtons Capacity I think he will not answer for the scene of business you mention, nor do I know of any person qualified to answer your purpose.
I will make inquiry and if I hear of any one on whom you can place confidence I will immediately inform you—so far from thinking your commands a trouble I can assure you Sir that it would give me the greatest satisfaction to have it in my power to render you the least service. I have the Honor to be with the greatest respect Your most Obedient Servant
1. GW’s letter to Hughes of 15 Aug. has not been found. He wrote this letter to inquire whether Richard Sappington would be a suitable candidate to manage the Mount Vernon estate (Jacob Hollingsworth to GW, 1 Aug. 1793, and note 2).
2. The enclosed letter from William Smith to Hughes of 18 Aug. reads: “My opinion is that Sapington woud not answer Generl Washington purpose he might do for the management of one farm and no more, I have nothing to say against him as an honest Man I found him very straight & exact in his dealings with me—but he must be a very clever fellow that woud manage the whole of the business agreeable to the General expectations & I do not know any one person that woud be competent to the business, I am glad to hear you are better today and shall expect the pleasure of your company here this afternoon.” Beneath his signature, Smith wrote “Sunday morning” (DLC:GW).