From Edmund Randolph
Philadelphia January 17. 1794.
Since I had the honor of seeing you this morning, I met with Colo. Nicholas Lutz, of the town of Reading. He has requested me to inform you, that he shall be obliged to you to nominate him to be the inspector of the excise for that district. His son stands recommended to you; but he wishes to take his place. Mr Lutz says, that he is known to you, and is a member of the legislature of Pennsylvania,1 and that Mr Forrest and Mr Nichols do not live in the district.2 I have the honor, sir, to be with the highest respect yr. mo. ob. serv.
1. Nicholas Lutz (Lotz; 1740–1807) emigrated from the German Palatinate as a young man and by 1775 was settled in Reading, Pennsylvania. In 1776, Lt. Col. Lutz commanded the Berks County regiment of flying camp troops at the Battle of Long Island, N.Y., during which British forces captured him. Freed in a prisoner exchange in 1779, he served as commissioner of forage for Berks County from 1780 until the end of the war. He represented Berks County in the Pennsylvania state legislature, 1783–85 and 1789–94, and served as an associate judge of Berks County, 1795–1806. Exactly which of his seven sons (Philip, Nicholas, Jacob, John, Henry, Michael [b. 1764], and William) he wished to replace as a candidate is not known.
Berks County was included in the second survey of the district of Pennsylvania along with Luzerne, Northampton, and Northumberland counties (Executive Order, 15 March 1791). On the vacancy created in the office of inspector of the revenue for this survey by the incompetency of James Collins, see Alexander Hamilton to GW, 23 Dec. 1793. Jacob Morgan wrote a letter to GW of 25 Jan., in which he recommended Lutz as “a person in my opinion very capable of doing the duties of that Office—he has been frequently employed in the service of the public, & always found to be punctual & industrious, particularly in purchasing supplies for the Army in the State of Pennsyla. during the late War; first under my Superintendance; next under Col. [Samuel] Miles, & then under Mr Robert Morris when he became financier; & has always given general satisfaction which Mr Morris will testify—Being a prisoner to the British during the late war, he was obliged to sell the most valuable Mill in Berks County to support himself & family, this with other losses make it an object of some consequence his obtaining the post for which he has applied” (DLC:GW).