6 April 1796
I take the liberty of enclosing a letter which has been forwarded to me by the Trustees of Hampden Sidney Colledge. This institution is the only one that I know of, on the South Side of James River, below the mountains that has been incorporated. Since its establishment it has been very usefull, but that usefulness has been greatly curtailed by the Scantiness of the funds which they have been able hitherto to procure, being almost intirely dependant on private contributions. If you should think proper to take into consideration the pretentions of this place, in making a distribution of the patronage which you have intended to bestow on institutions of this sort, the Gentlemen who are mentioned in the enclosed letter will be able to give information as to its merits. Docr Smith who is now the President of the Colledge at Princeton was the founder, and is able to give particular information with respect to it. I am Sir with the greatest respect Your very Hble sert
Abm B Venable
DLC: Papers of George Washington.