George Washington Papers

Memorandum of Agreement with James Welch, 11 October 1798

Memorandum of Agreement with James Welch

[11 October 1798]

Mr James Welch having signified to me, that he has it is in his power to dispose of part of a tract of Ninety Nine thousand nine hundred and ninety five acres of land lying on Elk River in the County of Randolph, conveyed to me in Trust, and proposing to subject other Lands of equal or greater value in lieu thereof, in like trust, and intimating further that it will be an accomodation to him, and a benefit to me in his payments to make the exchange.

I do therefore hereby certifie, that upon the ascertainment of this fact, that is, that the substituted property is of equal value, & free from all disputes & incumbrances, I am willing to receive it in lieu of such part of the aforementioned tract of 99,995 Acrs. as he shall dispose of, and that I will release my claim accordingly, to the same, upon receiving a proper conveyance of the substituted property1—Given under my hand this 11th day of Octr 1798.

Go: Washington


1For James Welch’s negotiations with GW in November and December 1797 leading to Welch’s acquiring GW’s Kanawha lands, see Welch to GW, 29 Nov. 1797, n.1, and references. When on 10 Dec. 1797 GW spelled out for his attorney James Keith the terms of sale, he made no mention of Welch’s conveyance to him, in trust, of land on the Elk. Keith, however, may have included this in the indenture that GW and Welch signed on 16 Dec. 1797. Welch spent the night of 11 Oct. 1798 at Mount Vernon (Diaries description begins Donald Jackson and Dorothy Twohig, eds. The Diaries of George Washington. 6 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1976–79. description ends , 6:319). In the correspondence between the two men in 1799, in which GW seeks without success to secure payment from Welch, the sale of the land on the Elk again comes up (see GW to Welch, 15 Feb., 7 April, 26 May 1799, and Welch to GW, 10 Mar., 25 April, 16 May 1799).

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