George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Daniel Leet, 24 April 1796

To Daniel Leet and others petitioners in behalf of certain fugitives from justice

Philadelphia 24th april 1796.


I have received and considered your petition bearing date the third day of last december for a general pardon of all those concerned in the late western insurrection who having fled from the public justice have not been comprehended in any act of Amnesty. While citizens accused of crimes or misdemeanors are endeavouring to elude a fair trial by the laws of the land, absconding or otherwise keeping themselves from the power of the court to which most properly they are amenable they seem not entitled to the clemency of government; and more especially when that clemency is not solicited by the offenders themselves. Under these circumstances they, in whose behalf you have been led by motives of compassion to intercede, are not deemed now to deserve the forgiveness of their country. I am with great respect gentlemen your most obedient servant.

DLC: Pennsylvania Whiskey Rebellion Collection.

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