Robinson’s House Oct. 24th 1780
Yesterday I was honored with Your Excellency’s Favor of the 21th by Colo. Lamb.
I am sorry to find that such cogent & just Reasons rinder it improper, & have influenced Your Excellency to direct, that the Enquiry into my Conduct be extended no further back, than during my unhappy Connexion with the guilty Arnold. A friendly opinion to that Effect from Colo. Harrison had in some Measure prepared me for a Disappointment to my ardent Wishes.
I thank Your Excellency for informing me, that Tistimonials of my former Conduct are admissible, as presumptive Evidence of my present Innocence, or the contrary; This will in Part answer my Wishes; Altho’, I cannnot expect a pointed Decision from the Court, on my Conduct, prior to my being dismissed by Congress in January last.
If possible, I do not wish to rest my Acquittal or Condemnation on my former good or bad Conduct; I hope with some Degree of Confidence that from the Circumstantial Evidence, I shall be able to produce, I will not be much [indebted] to a former unimpeached Character for my Aquittal in the present Case.
If Colo. Meade ever sent his Deposition, I fear it has miscarried. I have received the Papers alluded to in Your Excellency’s Letter, covered by one of the 19th from Colo. Harrison; that Gentlemen informs me he had drafted his Deposition & if he could meet with a Magistrate, in his route to Virginia, he would attest to it & send it to Me.
As it may be of essential Importance to Me, to be furnished with the Testimony of one of the Gentlemen of Your Excellency’s family, with Respect to my Conduct, on and after 25th September, & whether the Papers taken on André were in my Hand Writing; I have by this Conveyance requested Colo. Hamilton to be so obliging as to send me his, by the first Opportunity; Least those from Meade & Harrison should not reach me in Season, or not be broad enough with Respect to the Papers taken on André. I have the Honor to be, with the highest Sentiments of Respect & Gratitude, Sir, Your Excellency’s Most Obliged & Obedt Servt
DLC: Papers of George Washington.