George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Bushrod Washington, 13 February 1794

From Bushrod Washington

Richmond [Va.] Feby 13th 1794

Dear Uncle

It is with great unwillingness that I take the liberty of troubling you upon the business which is the subject of this letter, well knowing how little time you have to spare from public employments. It Was necessary to make you a party in the present suit, tho’ only for forms sake. Indeed, I suppose you would wish for an opportunity of renouncing the character of Exectr of Mr Fairfax, which I am told you could not with convenience undertake.1 I have taken the liberty to enclose you a rough draght of an answer to the only point necessary for you to notice, unless you should think proper to answer the whole or any other parts of the Bill.2 this I did to prevent the inconvenience & expence of applying to Counsel. Should you approve of the one sent, or think proper to make any alterations in it, you will please sign, & enclose it together with the Bill to me—if convenient before, or as early in March as possible. It is usual to subjoin an affidavit, but in the present case we do not suppose it necessary, and it will save you trouble. The Copy of the Bill which accompanies it, is intended for your information in case you should incline to make any alterations or additions to the answer.

I am happy to inform you that my prospects here in business, are equal to my expectations; I wish they may not be superior to my merit, but I trust that my deficiencies will not be the result of inattention. Accept my most sincere wishes for your health and happiness. Mrs W. Joins me in love to Yourself & my Aunt & believe me to be Dear Uncle Your affectionate Nephew 3

Bushd. Washington

ALS, ViMtvL.

1The legal suit concerned the estate of George William Fairfax, who died in 1787. Although named an executor in Fairfax’s will, GW had declined to serve as such (Samuel Athawes to GW, 20 July 1787; GW to Warner Washington, 9 Nov. 1787, and to Athawes, 8 Jan. 1788). For recent correspondence concerning this estate, see Hannah Fairfax Washington to GW, 2 Nov. 1793.

2GW signed the answer that Bushrod prepared and enclosed it in his reply to Bushrod of 23 February. The enclosed bill of complaint has not been identified.

3Bushrod had moved his law practice from Alexandria, Va., to Richmond in 1790. His wife was the former Julia Ann “Nancy” Blackburn.

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