George Washington Papers

To George Washington from David Humphreys, 21 May 1794

From David Humphreys

Lisbon May 21st 179[4]1

My dear Sir.

I am confident it will not escape your recollection, that no Person of your acquaintance, has been more sparing or cautious in introducing Strangers or Others to your protection & good offices. But in the present instance, I feel myself justified in recommending to your particular notice & favor, the Chevalier de Freire, Minister Resident for Her Most Faithful Majesty to the United States.2 His personal worth, the good-will he has long manifested to the U.S., the excellent character of the Sovereign he represents, the favorable dispositions of that Sovereign & the Nation towards our Country, and the extreme kindness with which I have been received by all ranks of People from the highest to the lowest, are so many strong motives, which irresistibly conspire to make me wish he may be as well satisfied with my Country, as I am with his—With sentiments of the most sincere affection & respect I have the honor to be Your most devoted & very humble Servt

D. Humphreys


1Humphreys wrote "1791"; however, the letter is docketed in part "21st May 1794," which is surely correct.

2Cipriano Ribeiro Freire (1749-1824), who had earlier been posted to London as secretary to the legation and later as chargé d’affaires, was appointed Portugal’s minister to the United States in late 1790, but his departure was delayed. Freire’s letter of credence from Maria I, queen of Portugal, to GW is dated 24 Jan. 1793 (DNA: RG 59, Communications from Heads of Foreign States). He arrived at Philadelphia by 13 Oct. 1794 and was formally presented to GW on 30 Oct. (Edmund Randolph to GW, 13 Oct. 1794, DLC:GW; Gazette of the United States and Daily Evening Advertiser, 1 Nov.). He remained as minister until April 1799.

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