George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Tobias Lear, 10 September 1797

To Tobias Lear

Mount Vernon 10th Sepr 1797

Dear Sir

I have almost determined to build the Walls of the House intended for a Distillery (at my Mill) of Stone, for the sake of expedition; as the Carpenters work can be carrying on at the same time.1 Having this in contemplation, I would thank you for informing at what price foundation Stone from the Falls could be delivered to a Boat as near to my Mill as the Vessel could get and whether any person would undertake the delivery there accordingly. I shall use freestone from my own Quarry for the building above the Foundation.

When I was last at your Ho. Captn Preston was landing a number of Shingles—Pray inform me if he has any now for sale? the length, & average breadth and the price? Is Cornelius disengaged? Could he be had to assist in my building? could any other be obtained & on what terms.2 In much haste, dinner waiting Yrs

Go: Washington

ALS, Edward Eberstadt & Sons catalog no. 134, item 636, 1954.

1For reference to the building of the new distillery, see Anderson to GW, 21 June 1797, n.4. The new distillery was, indeed, made of stone (see GW to Robert Lewis, 26 Jan. 1798).

2Cornelius McDermott Roe lived at Big Spring near Leesburg. He had worked for GW as a stonemason and bricklayer during the 1780s, first as an indentured servant, then for a salary. See GW to George Augustine Washington, 29 July 1787, n.6.

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