George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Richard Kidder Meade, 21 December 1796

Frederick 21st Decr 1796

Dear Sir

It is with reluctance that I contribute in the least degree to the accumulation of your trouble; but when the object of this letter, & my motive for writing it, is known to you, I will not doubt of gaining your pardon, for the trouble it may cause. I am certain you hold in remembrance the name of Colo. Robert Stark, the gentleman who met with such rigorous & continued ill treatment to the Southward during his captivity with the British. From a state of affluence, at least of compleat independance, he was reduced to seek his fortune in the Spanish Government, & settled with the remnant of his property at the Natches—disgusted with so arbitrary a Government & possessing a temper incapable of flattery, by which he might have presev’d a good understanding with the Governor & by that means have promoted his interest, he determend unfortunately, just before the treaty with Spain, to return to his native State with the very little he had left; he is however still anxious to go back from the favorable boundary establish to the South, & his attachment to that Country, & has solicited me in such a manner, to give you the trouble of reading this, that I was unable to get over it. He informs me that the establishment of a new State South West of the Tenessee will be before Congress during their present sitting, & that he should be glad to fill any office in such State, as he may be thought qualified for; he also mentions that he has written to some members of Congress of his acquaintance on the subject, to them I beg leave to refer you as being better acquainted with him than I am; but Sir, although I am well aware of the serious business of recommendation, I think myself bound as I have undertaken this task, to say that he appeard to me during a visit he made me, to be an open candid & firm man of good plain understanding, & that his politics correspond perfectly with the sentiments you express’d publicly to your Country, I would to God we could all imbibe the same opinions. Pardon me for going a little further. There can be no doubt that you get good general information of what passes in the union, yet it may not be amiss to communicate to you that Mr Stark (immediately arriv’d) speaks of a dangerous French character in the Country he has left, an agent of Genets on a former occasion, who is endeavouring to poison the minds of the people, by disaffecting them to the United States & attaching them to france, but as a consolation he further adds that the few inhabitants there by no means incline to a french connection. I will only present Mrs Meades & my own best respects to Mrs Washington & yourself & beg you to be assurd, that I am with every proper sentiment towards you—your anxious fellow citizen Friend & hum. Servt

R. K. Meade

DLC: Papers of George Washington.

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