You must set your browser to enable Javascript in order to access certain functions of this site, including the purchase of tickets.

Schedule of Property

The Will of George Washington

Mount Vernon 9th July 1799
Schedule of property comprehended in the foregoing Will, which is directed to be Sold, and some of it, conditionally is Sold; with discriptive, and explanatory notes relative thereto.
In Virginia
Loudoun County
Difficult run 300   [$] 6,666 (a)
(a) This tract for the size of it is valuable, more for its situation than the quality of its soil, though that is good for Farming; with a considerable portion of grd that might, very easily, be improved into Meadow. It lyes on the great road from the City of Washington, Alexandria and George Town, to Leesburgh & Winchester; at Difficult bridge; nineteen miles from Alexandria, less from the City & George Town, and not more than three from Matildaville at the Great Falls of Potomac. There is a valuable seat on the Premises--and the whole is conditionally sold--for the sum annexed in the Schedule. [1]
Loudoun & Fauquier
Ashbys Bent 2481 [acres] $10 [$]24,810
Chattins Run 885 8 7,080 (b)
(b) What the selling prices of lands in the vicinity of these two tracts are, I know not; but compared with those above the ridge, and others below them, the value annexed will appear moderate--a less one would not obtain them from me. [2]
So. fork of Bullskin 1600    
Head of Evans's [Evitt's] M[arsh] 453    
On Wormeley's line 183    
  2236 [acres] [$]20 $44,720 (c)
(c) The surrounding land, not superior in Soil, situation or properties of any sort, sell currently at from twenty to thirty dollars an acre. The lowest price is affixed to <these>. [3]
Bought from Mercer 571 [acres] [$]20 [$]11,420 (d)
(d) The observations made in the last note applies equally to this tract; being in the vicinity of them, and of similar quality, altho' it lyes in another County. [4]
On Potk River above B[ath] 240 [acres] [$]15 [$]3,600 (e)
(e) This tract, though small, is extremely valuable. It lyes on Potomac River about 12 miles above the Town of Bath (or Warm springs) and is in the shape of a horse Shoe; the river running almost around it. Two hundred Acres of it is rich low grounds; with a great abundance of the largest & finest Walnut trees; which, with the produce of the Soil, might (by means of the improved Navigation of the Potomac) be brought to a shipping port with more ease, and at a smaller expence, than that which is transported 30 miles only by land. [5]
On North River 400 [acres]   abt [$]3,600 (f)
(f) This tract is of second rate Gloucester low grounds. It has no Improvements thereon, but lyes on navigable water, abounding in Fish and Oysters. It was received in payment of a debt (carrying interest) and valued in the year 1789 by an impartial Gentleman to £800. N.B. it has lately been sold, and there is due thereon, a balance equal to what is annexed the Schedule. [6]
Near Suffolk 1/3 of 1119 acres 373 [acres] [$]8 [$]2,984 (g)
(g) These 373 a<cres> are the third part of undivided purchases made by the deceased Fielding Lewis[,] Thomas Walker and myself; on full conviction that they would become valuable. The land lyes on the Road from Suffolk to Norfolk--touches (if I am not mistaken) some part of the Navigable water of Nansemond River--borders on, and comprehends part of the rich Dismal Swamp; is capable of great improvement; and from its situation must become extremely valuable. [7]
Great Dismal Swamp
My dividend thereof     abt $20,000 (h)
(h) This is an undivided Interest wch I held in the Great Dismal Swamp Company--containing about 4000 acres, with my part of the Plantation & Stock thereon belonging to the Company in the sd Swamp. [8]
Ohio River
Round bottom 587    
Little Kanhawa 2314    
16 miles lowr down 2448    
Opposite Big Bent 4395 dol.  
  9744 [acres] 10 [$]97,440 (i)
(i) These several tracts of land are of the first quality on the Ohio River, in the parts where they are situated; being almost if not altogether River bottoms. The smallest of these tracts is actually sold at ten dollars an acre but the consideration therefor not received--the rest are equally valuable & will sell as high--especially that which lyes just below the little Kanhawa and is opposite to a thick settlement on the West side the Rivr. The four tracts have an aggregate breadth upon the River of Sixteen miles and is bounded there by that distance. [9]
Great Kanhawa
Near the Mouth West 10990    
East side above 7276    
Mouth of Cole River 2000    
Opposite thereto 2950    
Burning Spring 125    
  23341 [acres]   [$] 200,000 (k)
(k) These tracts are situated on the Great Kanhawa River, and the first four are bounded thereby for more than forty miles. It is acknowledged by all who have seen them (and of the tract containing 10990 acres which I have been on myself, I can assert) that there is no richer, or more valuable land in all that Region; They are conditionally sold for the sum mentioned in the Schedule--that is $200,000 and if the terms of that Sale are not complied with they will command considerably more. The tract of which the 125 acres is a Moiety, was taken up by General Andrew Lewis and myself for, and on account of a bituminous Spring which it contains, of so inflamable a nature as to burn as freely as Spirits, and is as nearly difficult to extinguish. [10]

Charles County 600 [acres] [$]6 [$]3,600 (l)
(l) I am but little acquainted with this land, although I have once been on it. It was received (many years since) in discharge of a debt due to me from Daniel Jenifer Adams at the value annexed thereto--and must be worth more. It is very level, lyes near the River Potomac. [11]
Montgomery D[itt]o 519 [acres] [$]12 [$]6,228 (m)
(m) This tract <lies> about 30 miles above the City of Washington, not far from Kittoctan. It is good farming Land, and by those who are well acquainted with it I am informed that it would sell at twelve or $15 pr acre. [12]
Great Meadows 234 [acres] [$]6 [$]1,404 (n)
(n) This land is valuable on account of its local situation, and other properties. It affords an exceeding good stand on Braddocks road from Fort Cumberland to Pittsburgh--and besides a fertile soil, possesses a large quantity of natural Meadow, fit for the scythe. It is distinguished by the appellation of the Great Meadows--where the first action with the French in the year 1754 was fought. [13]
New York
Mohawk River abt 1000 acres] [$]6 [$]6,000 (o)
(o) This is the moiety of about 2000 Acs. which remains unsold of 6071 Acres on the Mohawk River (Montgomery Cty) in a Patent granted to Daniel Coxe in the Township of Coxeborough & Carolana--as will appear by Deed from Marinus Willet & Wife to George Clinton (late Governor of New York) and myself. The latter sales have been at Six dollars an ac[r]e and what remains unsold will fetch that or more. [14]
North Westn Territy
On little Miami 839    
Ditto 977    
Ditto 1235    
  3051 [acres] [$]5 [$]15,251 (p)
(p) The quality of these lands & their Situation, may be known by the Surveyors certificates--which are filed along with the Patents. They lie in the vicinty of Cincinnati; one tract near the mouth of the little Miami another seven & the third ten miles up the same--I have been informed that they will readily command more than they are estimated at. [15]
Rough Creek 3000    
Ditto adjoing 2000    
  5000 [acres] [$]2 [$]10,000 (q)
(q) For the description of these tracts in detail, see General Spotswoods letters filed with the other papers relating to them. Besides the General good quality of the Land there is a valuable Bank of Iron Ore thereon: which, when the settlement becomes more populous (and settlers are moving that way very fast) will be found very valuable; as the rough Creek, a branch of Green River affords ample water for Furnaces & forges. [16]
City of Washington
Two, near the Capital, Sqr. 634 cost $963--and with Buildgs [$]15,000 (r)
(r) The two lots near the Capital, in square 634, cost me <9>63$ only; but in this price I was favoured, on condition that I should build two Brick houses three Story high each: without this reduction the selling prices of those Lots would have cost me about $1350. These lots, with the buildings thereon, when completed will stand me in $15000 at least. [17]
[City of Washington]
No. 5. 12. 13 & 14--the 3 last, Water lots on the Eastern Branch, in Sqr. 667 containing together 34,438 sqr. feet @ 12 Cts [$]4,132 (s)
(s) Lots No. 5. <12.> 13. & 14 on the Eastn branch, are advantageously situated on the water--<and> although many lots much less convenient have sold a great deal higher I will rate these at 12 Cts the square foot only. [18]
Corner of Pitt & Prince Stts half an Acre--laid out into buildgs 3 or 4 of wch are let on grd Rent at $3 pr foot [$]4,000 (t)
(t) For this lot, though unimproved, I have refused $35<0>0--It has since been laid off into proper sized lots for building on--three or 4 of which are let on ground Rent--forever--at three dollars a foot on the Street. and this price is asked for both fronts on Pitt & Princes Street. [19]
A lot in the Town of half an Acr. & another in the Commons of about 6 Acs.--supposed [$]400 (u)
(u) As neither the lot in the Town or Common have any improvements on them, it is not easy to fix a price, but as both are well situated, it is presumed the price annexed to them in the Schedule, <is a> reasonable valu[atio]n. [20]
Bath--or Warm Springs
Two Well situated, & had buildings to the amt of £150 [$]800 (w)
(w) The Lots in Bath (two adjoining) cost me, to the best of my recollection, betwn fifty & sixty pounds 20 years ago; and the buildings thereon £150 more. Whether property there has <increased> or decreasd in its value, <and in wha>t condition the houses a<re, I am ignora>nt. but s<uppose they are not valued too> high. [21]
United States 6 prCts   [$]3746  
Do defered
3 prCts
  $2500 $6,246 (x)
(x) These are the sums which are actually funded. and though no more in the aggregate than $7,566--stand me in at least ten thousand pounds Virginia Money. be<ing> the amount of bonded and other debts due to me, & discharged during the War when money had depreciated in that ratio--and was so se<tt>led by public author[it]y. [22]
Potomack Company
24 Shares--cost ea. £100 Sterg   [$]10,666 (y)
(y) The value, annexed to these sha[res] is what they have actually cost me, and is the price affixed by Law: and although the present selling price is under par, my advice to the Legatees (for whose benefit they are intended, especially those who can afford to lye out of the Money is that each should take and hold one; there being a Moral certainty of a great and increasing profit arising from them in the course <of a few> years. [23]
James River Company
5 Shares--each cost $100   [$]500 (z)
(z) It is supposed that the Shares in the James River Company must also be productive. But of this I can give no decided opinion for want of mo<re accur>ate informatn. [24]
Bank of Columbia
170 Shares--$40 each   [$]6,800
Bank of Alexandria
beside 20 to Free School 5   [$]1,000 (&)
(&) Th<ese are the no>minal prices of th<e shares in the Banks> of Alexandria & Co<lumbia--the selling prices> vary according <to circumstances.> But as the Sto<ck usually divides from> eight to ten <per cent per annum, they> must be w<orth the former, at least,> so long as the <Banks are conceived> to be Secure, <although circumstan>ces may, so<metimes make them below it>. [25]
1 Covering horse, 5 Co[ac]h Horses--4 riding do--Six brood Mares--20 working horses & mares. 2 Covering Jacks--& 3 young ones--10 she asses, 42 working Mules--15 younger ones 329 head of horned Cattle 640 head of Sheep--and a large stock of Hogs--the precise number is unknown[.] My Manager has estimated this live Stock at £7,000 but I shall set it down in order to make rd sum at
Agregate amt
The va<lue of the live sto>ck depends more up<on the qua>lity than quantity of the <different> species of it, and this aga<in upon> the demand, and judgment <or fanc>y of purchasers.
Go: Washington


1. Washington acquired the tract on Difficult Run in Loudoun County in 1763 from Bryan Fairfax for £82.10 in payment of a debt. Nothing had been done to develop the property when Washington conveyed it in May 1795 to John Gill for $6,666.66. As Gill did not have the financial wherewithal to pay the purchase price immediately, Washington agreed to rent him the property for $433.33 per annum for as many as ten years. During that period Gill would, it was hoped, be able to save enough money to buy the tract outright. In October 1799, having made only two of the four annual payments due, Gill asked to be released from his bargain. To reach a settlement Gill gave Washington a slip of land on the west bank of Difficult Run and a parcel of goods in payment of the arrears. Washington then revoked the original agreement, leaving himself in sole possession of the Difficult Run tract at the time of his death. See Memorandum: List of Quitrents, 1764, n.3 (Papers, Colonial Series, 7:350-51), GW to Charles Lee, 17 May 1795, and, especially, GW to John Gill, 19 Oct. 1799, n.2. [back]

2. Washington in 1767 bought from George Carter's estate a tract of 2,682 (2,481) acres at Ashby's Bent in Fauquier and Loudoun counties; and in 1772 he bought from Bryan Fairfax 600 (885) acres on Chattins Run in Fauquier County. He divided the Ashby's Bent tract into twenty parcels for rental and the Chattins Run tract into four. After the war, he engaged Battaile Muse to collect the rents from his tenants in Fauquier and Loudoun counties, and from those in Frederick and Berkeley counties as well. By the time Muse was ready to turn over the collection of rents to Washington's nephew Robert Lewis in 1791, the rental payments of these tenants had come to represent a significant part of Washington's income. Washington's last letter to Lewis about the tenants was written on 7 Dec. 1799, a few days before he died. For GW's acquisition of the Ashby's Bent and Chattins Run tracts and the initial leasing of the land parcels to tenants, see the source note in Lease to Francis Ballinger, 17 Mar. 1769, and Bryan Fairfax to GW, 20 Jan. 1772, n.1 (Papers, Colonial Series, 8:171-77, 9:8-9). For extended references to Battaile Muse's dealings with GW's tenants, see the note to GW to Muse, 18 Sept. 1785, Lists of Tenants, same date, and Muse to GW, 28 Nov. 1785 (Papers, Confederation Series, 3:253-65, 413-16). [back]

3. Between 1750 and 1752 when young Washington was engaged in surveying he acquired either by grant or by purchase five tracts of land on the waters of Bullskin Run in Frederick (later Berkeley) County. These included grants of 453, 93 (approximately), and 760 acres and purchases of 456 and 552 acres, for a total of 2,314 acres. Parcels of the Bullskin land were rented throughout the years by a succession of tenants. The death in November 1799 of the most important of these, John Ariss, who had begun renting 700 acres in 1786, led Washington to write his rental agent Robert Lewis on 7 Dec. 1799 about the possibility of reclaiming the use of the Ariss and other tenanted tracts so that he might give employment to the "supernumerary hands" at Mount Vernon. For GW's acquiring of his Bullskin lands, see Land Grant, from Thomas, Lord Fairfax, 20 Oct. 1750 (Papers, Colonial Series, 1:47-48). For the renting of the Bullskin land parcels, see the references in note 2; see also GW to Muse, 28 July 1785, n.2 (Papers, Confederation Series, 3:159-62); see also John Ariss to GW, 5 Aug. 1784 (ibid., 2:24-25). [back]

4. In November 1774 Washington conducted the sale of the American property of his boyhood friend and former military secretary, George Mercer, who had moved to England. Mercer's property included a tract of 6,500 acres on the Shenandoah River in Frederick County. At the time of the sale the tract was divided into twenty-two lots of about three hundred acres each. Washington bought two of these lots, numbers 5 and 6, near present-day Berryville, Va., later determined to total 571 acres. From the time of purchase Washington rented his two lots to tenants in four parcels. For the sale of George Mercer's Frederick County land in 1774, see GW to John Tayloe, 30 Nov. 1774, n.2, Edward Snickers to GW, 17 May 1784, n.1, GW to Francis Lightfoot Lee and Ralph Wormeley, Jr., 20 June 1784, and notes (Papers, Colonial Series, 10:191-92; Papers, Confederation Series, 1:392-94, 458-65), and Jones, "Edward Snickers, Yeoman," 26. For GW's Frederick County tenants, see GW to Battaile Muse, 28 July 1785, n.1 (Papers, Confederation Series, 3:159-62). [back]

5. On 8 Mar. 1753 Washington secured a grant of 240 acres on the Potomac River between the Great and Little Cacapon rivers, at that part of Frederick County that became Hampshire County, Va., later West Virginia. See Land Grant, from Thomas, Lord Fairfax, 20 Oct. 1750, source note (Papers, Colonial Series, 1:47-48). In 1763 Washington entered an agreement with Christopher Hardwick to develop jointly a plantation on this tract, but nothing came of the venture, and Washington made no further effort to develop the property. See Agreement with Christopher Hardwick, 22 Jan. 1763 (Papers, Colonial Series, 7:182-85). Washington advertised the tract for rent in June 1784, without success. The following September he visited his property and found the lower end covered with "rich White oak" and the upper part "with Walnut of considerable size," but his further efforts to find a renter failed (Diaries, 4:14, 15-16). Ten years later, in May 1794, Washington's land agent, Robert Lewis, suggested that Washington exchange this tract for one on Bullskin Run near his other holdings. The tract on the Potomac remained in Washington's possession until his death, however. After he completed his will, Washington received a letter dated 24 Aug. 1799 from Isaac Weatherinton warning him that for twenty years poachers had been cutting trees on his property. On 20 Oct. 1799 Washington asked help from Weatherinton, who lived on adjoining property, to stop this practice. [back]

6. Washington accepted in 1789 this tract of land on Back River, a branch of North River, in Gloucester County, at a valuation of £800 from John Dandridge in payment of a debt owed by the estate of his father Bartholomew Dandridge, Martha Washington's brother. Washington's initial attempts to sell the 400-acre tract failed, but in April 1797 George Ball agreed to buy it for £800, to be paid in three equal installments. For GW's purchase of the tract and his unsuccessful attempts to sell it, see John Dandridge to GW, 27 Oct. 1788, and references in the source note of that document (Papers, Presidential Series, 1:75-77); for GW's sale of the tract to George Ball, see GW to Ball, 6 Mar. 1797, n.1 (Papers, Retirement Series, 1:7-9). In 1799 Washington made several efforts to get from Ball the payments due on the land, but to no avail. See GW to John Page and GW to Ball, both 17 Mar. 1799, and GW to Ball, 25 Sept. 1799. [back]

7. In December 1764 the three managers of the Dismal Swamp Land Company, namely, Washington, his brother-in-law Fielding Lewis, and Dr. Thomas Walker, together bought, for £100, 1,119 acres of land near the swamp on the Norfolk-Suffolk road. In 1782, shortly after Fielding Lewis died, his son and the executor of his will, John Lewis, wrote to Washington about the disposing of the lands held jointly by Washington and his father. See Cash Accounts, December 1764, n.3 (Papers, Colonial Series, 7:342-43); see also John Lewis to GW, 24 Mar. 1782, and GW to John Lewis, 17 April 1782. At the end of the war, in January 1784, Thomas Walker consulted Washington about selling the Nansemond County tract near the Dismal Swamp, but it was decided no immediate attempt to sell the tract should be made. See Walker to GW, 24 Jan. 1784, and GW to Walker, 10 April 1784 (Papers, Confederation Series, 1:76-80, 281-83). In September 1797 Thomas Walker's son, Francis, as the executor of his father's will asked Washington whether he would be interested in purchasing his father's share in the Nansemond tract. Washington was not interested. See Francis Walker to GW, 28 Sept. 1797, and GW to Walker, 10 Oct. 1797 (Papers, Retirement Series, 1:376, 401-2). [back]

8. When the Dismal Swamp Land Company was organized in November 1763 Washington as one of the organizers offered to help survey the 40,000 acres in the swamp granted to the company by the Virginia Council. He became one of the three managers of the company and for the next few years took a leading role in its affairs. He also participated in the revival and reorganization of the company after the war in 1784. Henry Lee, Jr., in November 1795 bought Washington's interest in the Dismal Swamp Company for $20,000 to be paid in three annual payments. Despite all his efforts Lee was unable to keep up his payments, which led to the exchange of a number of letters between Lee and Washington in 1797 and 1798. See especially Dismal Swamp Land Company Articles of Agreement, 3 Nov. 1763, and notes, Thomas Walker to GW, 24 Jan. 1784, and notes, and GW to Henry Lee, Jr., 2 April 1797, n.1 (Papers, Colonial Series, 7:269-74; Papers, Confederation Series, 1:76-80; Papers, Retirement Series, 1:66-69). [back]

9. In response to Washington's petition presented in December 1769 to the Virginia governor and council on behalf of the officers and men of the Virginia Regiment of 1754 asking for the distribution of the 200,000 acres promised them in Robert Dinwiddie's Proclamation of 1754, the council ordered the survey of 200,000 acres along the Great Kanawha and Ohio rivers. William Crawford made the survey in 1771, and the first distribution of the land came in November 1772. As a part of the acreage to which he was entitled, Washington secured three tracts on the Ohio, of 2,314 acres, 2,448 acres, and 4,395 acres. His fourth tract on the Ohio, the Round Bottom tract of 587 acres, he claimed in 1774 on military warrants purchased by him from veterans of the war with France, to whom the warrants were issued in 1773 under the terms of the royal Proclamation of 1763. Washington's claim to the Round Bottom tract continued to be disputed even after he finally secured the grant to it in October 1784. The documents relating to the distribution of western land under the terms of the proclamations of 1754 and 1763 are printed in Papers, Colonial Series, but for a summary account of Washington's acquisition of the four tracts on the Ohio River, see GW to Samuel Lewis, 1 Feb. 1784, source note, and GW to Thomas Lewis, 1 Feb. 1784, n.3 (Papers, Confederation Series, 1:91-100). Throughout the 1780s Washington sought to lease or sell his land on the Ohio and other western lands, without success. In March 1791 he sold both his Ohio and Great Kanawha lands to the Frenchman John Joseph de Barth. When Barth was unable to make the payments, the agreement was cancelled early in 1793. In 1798 Washington leased the Round Bottom tract to Alexander McClean who was to make annual payments so as to complete the purchase of the tract for $5,870 within seven years. For references to the attempts in the 1780s to lease or sell the Ohio and Kanawha tracts, see GW to John Witherspoon, 10 Mar. 1784, and its enclosed advertisement, GW to Thomas Freeman, 23 Sept. 1784, 16 Oct. 1785, Freeman to GW, 9 June 1785, GW to Henry L. Charton, 20 May 1786, GW to Henry Banks, 22 Nov. 1787, and GW to David Stuart, 15 Jan. 1788 (Papers, Confederation Series, 1:197-204, 2:78-80, 3:43-47, 308-10, 4:63-66, 5:446-48, 6:41-45). For Washington's dealings with John de Barth, see GW to George Clendenin, 21 Mar. 1791, n.2 (Papers, Presidential Series, 7:609-10); for Washington's dealings with McClean, see McClean to GW, 2 July 1798, n.1, and GW to McClean, 6 Aug. 1798, n.1 (Papers, Retirement Series, 2:364-66, 492-94). [back]

10. Between 1772 and 1774 Washington used military warrants to claim four tracts of land totalling 23,216 acres on either side of the Great Kanawha River upriver from near its mouth at the Ohio River. In the first distribution of land under the Proclamation of 1754 (see note 9), Washington was allotted 10,990 acres running for more than seventeen miles along the west, or north, bank of the river. In the second distribution, in November 1773, he received jointly with George Muse a patent for 7,276 acres on the river; he immediately made a trade with Muse whereby he established his claim to the entire tract. In 1774 he bought from Charles Mynn Thruston a military warrant for 2,000 acres issued to Thruston under the terms of the royal proclamation of 1763 and used it to claim a 2,000 acre tract on the Great Kanawha at the mouth of the Coal (Cole) River. As part of the 5,000 acres that Washington was entitled to in his own right under the terms of the royal proclamation, he claimed, also in 1774, the 2,950 acre tract that ran for about six miles along the east, or south, bank of the Great Kanawha. For GW's dealings with George Muse regarding the 7,276 acre tract, see Agreement with George Muse, 3 Aug. 1770, and, especially, George Muse to GW, 3 Mar. 1784, n.1 (Papers, Colonial Series, 8:364; Papers, Confederation Series, 1:171-72). For GW's acquisition of the tracts of 10,990, 7,276, 2,010, and 2,950 acres on the Great Kanawha, see GW to Samuel Lewis, 1 Feb. 1784, source note and note 1 (ibid., 91-95). For references to GW's unsuccessful efforts to lease or sell his property on the Great Kanawha and Ohio rivers in the 1780s, see note 9. In December 1797 Washington leased his lands on the Kanawha to James Welch who agreed to make specified annual payments until the total reached $200,000 when the land would become his. See particularly GW to James Keith, 10 Dec. 1797 (Papers, Retirement Series, 1:512-14). Washington's most recent, and last letter from Welch, who never paid anything, is dated 16 May 1799. [back]

The Burning Springs tract, which is near present-day Charleston, W.Va., but is not on the Great Kanawha, Washington claimed as part of the 5,000 acres due him under the terms of the Proclamation of 1763. In 1775 Washington suggested to Gen. Andrew Lewis that he survey the tract for the two of them and that he and Lewis would hold it jointly. Gov. Thomas Jefferson issued the grant to the two men on 14 July 1780. See GW to Samuel Lewis, 1 Feb. 1784, n.3 (Papers, Confederation Series, 1:91-95). Andrew Lewis's son Thomas sold the upper half of the tract in 1795. For reference to the litigation over this property after GW's death, see Cook, Western Lands, 66-68.

11. Washington acquired 600 (552-1/2) acres of land in Charles County, Md., from Daniel Jenifer Adams in 1775 after Adams was unable to pay Washington for the flour and herring that Washington sold or consigned to Adams in 1772 for sale in the West Indies. See GW to Daniel Jenifer Adams, 20 July 1772, and the references in note 1 of that document (Papers, Colonial Series, 9:69-71). George Dunnington was the tenant on the Charles County land when it came into Washington's possession and was still the tenant in 1799. For a number of years after the Revolution the owner of land adjacent to Washington's, John Stromatt, disputed the boundaries of Washington's property. See William Smallwood to GW, 6 April 1784, GW to William Craik, 19 Mar. 1789, n.1, and GW to Daniel Jenifer, Jr., 7 June 1797, n.2 (Papers, Confederation Series, 1:271-73; Papers, Presidential Series, 1:408-10; Papers, Retirement Series, 1:171-72). [back]

12. In April 1793 Washington took possession of the 519-acre tract in Montgomery County, Md., which John Francis Mercer had assigned to him to complete the payment of the debt of the estate of his father, John Mercer, who died in 1768. The land was one half of Woodstock Manor which Mercer's wife, Sophia Sprigg Mercer, had inherited from her father, Richard Sprigg. The three tenants on the land continued to pay an annual rent of 1,500 pounds of tobacco. See Priscilla Beale to GW, 2 April 1797, source note (Papers, Retirement Series, 1:59-60). [back]

13. On Washington's instructions William Crawford bought in December 1770 from Lawrence Harrison for thirty guineas a tract of land of 234-1/2 acres at Great Meadows in Pennsylvania. Harrison's son-in-law William Brooks in October 1771 confirmed the sale to Washington of "a Sartain Tract or Parsel of Land Lying and being in Bedford County in Pensilvania on Bradock's road and Known by the name of they great Medows whare Colo. Washington had a batle with the frinch and Indians in they year one thousand seven Hundred and fifty four." See William Crawford to GW, 15 April 1771, nn.2 and 3 (Papers, Colonial Series, 8:445-46). It was Washington's surrender of Fort Necessity at Great Meadows to the French on 3 July 1754 that first made the name of the 22-year-old officer known outside Virginia. After the Revolution, discovering that his Great Meadows tract was unoccupied, Washington in July 1784 advertised it for lease. See GW to John Lewis, 14 Feb. 1784, and GW to Thomas Richardson, 5 July 1784 (Papers, Confederation Series, 1:123-24, 485-86). The tract of unimproved meadow land had a house on it in the 1780s, and Washington thought its location made it a good site for an inn. He succeeded in renting it only briefly in the 1780s, however, and his attempt to sell it in 1794 came to nothing. See Thomas Freeman to GW, 9 July 1785, n.3 (ibid., 3:43-47); see also Land Memorandum, 25 May 1794, and GW to Presley Neville, 16 June 1794 (Fitzpatrick, Works of Washington, 33:376-80, 405-9). [back]

14. In November 1784 Gov. George Clinton of New York informed Washington that he had bought from Marinus Willett for the two of them 6,071 acres of land on the Mohawk River for £1,062.5. The land was in "Coxeborough & Carolana" townships in Montgomery County, New York. Washington was not able to pay Clinton his half of the purchase price until 1787. Clinton, who was empowered to sell parcels of the land for the mutual benefit of the co-owners, had by 1793 sold more than four thousand acres for a total of £3,400.2, New York currency. See GW to George Clinton, 25 Nov. 1784, n.2 (Papers, Confederation Series, 2:145-49). [back]

15. When writing Winthrop Sargent in January 1798 about a challenge to his title to lands held by him on the Ohio River, Washington reported that he owned 3,051 acres on the Little Miami River just above the Ohio in the Northwest Territory. His holdings were composed of three tracts, of 839 acres, 977 acres, and 1,235 acres, held under a patent from Gov. Beverley Randolph of Virginia, dated 1 Dec. 1790. Washington secured by purchase in February 1774 the warrant of survey for 3,000 acres allotted under the royal Proclamation of 1763 to Capt. John Rootes who had served in 1758 in Col. William Byrd's 2d Virginia Regiment. Washington did not have the tract surveyed until 1788 and granted to him in 1790. See GW to Winthrop Sargent, 27 Jan. 1798, GW to Thomas Lewis, 1 Feb. 1784, n.5, and Thomas Marshall to GW, 19 May 1786 (Papers, Retirement Series, 2:53-54; Papers, Confederation Series, 1:95-100, 2:61-62). It may be that a second military warrant, one for 100 acres issued to a man named Thomas Cope, was used to claim for Washington 51 acres in addition to the 3,000 acres that Washington claimed under Rootes's warrant (Prussing, The Estate of Washington, 312-13). [back]

16. In December 1788 Washington agreed to give to Henry (Light Horse Harry) Lee the noted Arabian horse Magnolio in exchange for two tracts of land totalling 5,000 acres on Rough Creek in Kentucky. Washington's friend Alexander Spotswood gave up his conflicting claim to the land in 1796. For Washington's purchase of the land and for references to his correspondence regarding it beginning in 1795, see Spotswood to GW, 22 Mar. 1797, n.1 (Papers, Retirement Series, 1:43-44). Washington made no attempt to develop or to rent or sell this land. [back]

17. In September 1798 Washington bought two lots in square 634 just to the north of the new capitol in the Federal City. He paid the District of Columbia commissioners $178.57, one third the cost of lot no. 16, and paid Daniel Carroll of Duddington $428.40 for the adjacent lot no. 6. For a description of these lots, see Alexander White to GW, 8 Sept. 1798 (Papers, Retirement Series, 2:594-96). With the help of William Thornton, Washington contracted with George Blagdin to build under Thornton's general supervision two three-story connected houses on these lots. Work began on their construction in the fall of 1798, and when Washington inspected the houses in November 1799 they were near completion. In the 3rd and 4th volumes of the Retirement Series, there is a great deal of correspondence regarding the houses with Thornton and Blagdin. See particularly GW to District of Columbia Commissioners, 28 Sept. 1798, n.2 (Papers, Retirement Series, 3:52-55). [back]

18. Washington bought the four lots, the "Water lots" numbers 5, 12, 13, and 14, in square 667 to the south of the capitol from the District of Columbia commissioners on 18 Sept. 1793 (Ledger C, 21). The lots were initially sold in June 1803 for a total of $1,725.05. For legal reasons the sale did not go through, and they were sold again in 1817 for a total of $527.93 1/2 (Prussing, The Estate of Washington, 251-59). [back]

19. Washington bought lot no. 112 at Prince and Pitt streets in Alexandria in 1764 from John Alexander, Jr., for £38. See note 1 in Washington's will. In July 1797 Washington announced in the Alexandria Gazette that he was dividing his half acre lot into "convenient building squares," nine or ten in number. In August 1798 he leased two of these building squares, or lots. See John Fitzgerald to GW, 12 June 1797, n.1 (Papers, Retirement Series, 1:181-82). [back]

20. Washington obtained grants to two lots in Winchester in Frederick County in May 1753. He seems to have paid them little or no attention until 1785 when he asked his rental agent Battaile Muse about them. He learned that Dr. Robert Mackay had enclosed the smaller lot in town and incorporated a part of it in his garden. Mackay apparently continued to make use of both lots, and on 19 Aug. 1794 Washington's new rental agent Robert Lewis reported that Mackay had agreed to pay fifty shillings a year for their use. See GW to Battaile Muse, 28 July 1785, and Muse to GW, 6, 14 Sept. 1785 (Papers, Confederation Series, 3:159-62, 233-35, 248-49). [back]

21. Fielding Lewis in 1777 bought for Washington two lots in the town of Bath, also known as Warm Springs and later Berkeley Springs, for £100 Virginia currency. Washington visited Bath in September 1784 and engaged James Rumsey to build on the lots a dwelling house, kitchen, and stable. Rumsey completed building in the summer of 1786 a kitchen and stable, made of logs and measuring 17 by 19 feet, and he made a beginning on the dwelling house. Washington paid Rumsey a total of £73.1.4, making his first payment in October 1786 (Ledger B, 210). Jean Le Mayeur, Washington's French dentist, lived at Washington's place in Bath in 1786, and Washington gave Robert Hanson Harrison permission to use his houses in Bath on his visit there in July 1788. See James Rumsey to GW, 10 Mar. 1785, 24 June 1785, GW to Rumsey, 5 June 1785, George Lewis to GW, 25 Aug. 1786, and GW to Robert Hanson Harrison, 28 July 1788 (Papers, Confederation Series, 2:425-29, 3:82-83, 40-42, 4:228-29, 6:403-4); see also Diaries, 4:10-11, 13. At Washington's prompting, his rental agent Robert Lewis found a tenant in the summer of 1794 who agreed to keep up the property in return for having the use of it. See GW to Robert Lewis, 16 Mar. 1794, 18 May 1794, and Lewis to GW, 19 Aug. 1794. [back]

22. In May 1797 Washington authorized his Philadelphia agent Clement Biddle to receive the interest on his 3 and 6 per cent stock held in the Bank of the United States in Philadelphia. A year later he instructed Biddle to sell his 6 per cent stock amounting to $3,494.31, which Washington intended to lend to the Potomac River Company. See GW to Biddle, 28 May 1798, and the references in note 1 of that document (Papers, Retirement Series, 2:301). [back]

23. In the first subscription for the Potomac River Company, which was taken when it was established in 1784, Washington bought five shares for £100 each. Washington, who was the very active president of the company until 1789, learned in early 1796 that the new president of the company, Tobias Lear, had bought twenty shares to bolster confidence in the company. In April 1796 Washington bought three of Lear's shares, and in May 1797 he bought fifteen more from Lear, who was in bad financial condition. Washington says here in his listing of property that he owned twenty-four shares in the Potomac River Company; but only twenty-three shares, the five he subscribed to in 1784, and the eighteen he bought from Lear in 1796 and 1797, are listed in his Ledger C. See the references in William Hartshorne to GW, 24 May 1797, n.1 (Papers, Retirement Series, 1:153). For reference to the fifty shares in the Potomac River Company awarded to GW by the Virginia Assembly, which he set aside for a national university, see note 6 to Washington's will. [back]

24. When the James River Company was established in January 1785 along with the Potomac River Company, the Virginia legislature gave Washington stock in both companies, and both companies subsequently elected him president. Washington declined to act as president of the James River Company. For GW's disposition of the one hundred shares in the James River Company bestowed on him by the Virginia legislature, see note 5 to his will. Washington bought five shares in the James River Company for $500 in 1786. See Edmund Randolph to GW, 2 Mar. 1786, and John Hopkins to GW, 1 May 1786 (Papers, Confederation Series, 3:579-82; 4:31-32). [back]

25. Washington's account with the Bank of Alexandria in his Ledger C indicates that Tobias Lear bought for Washington five shares in the bank for $200 each on 28 May 1795 and ten shares for $197 each on 10 Oct. 1795, and that his farm manager William Pearce bought for him ten shares for $200 each also on 28 May 1795. See also Lear to GW, 26-27 May 1795. On 2 June 1795 Lear bought for Washington one hundred shares in the Bank of Columbia in Georgetown for $40 a share. See GW to Samuel Hanson, 23 July 1797, n.1, and references (Papers, Retirement Series, 1:267-68). In February 1797 Henry Lee arranged for the transfer to Washington of seventy shares in the Bank of Columbia valued at $2,800 in partial payment of the amount due on his purchase of Washington's interest in the Dismal Swamp Land Company. See GW to Henry Lee, Jr., 2 April 1797, n.1 (ibid., 66-69), and the subsequent correspondence in 1797 with Reed & Forde and with Gustavus Scott. For GW's gift of Columbia Bank stock to the Alexandria Academy, see note 4 to Washington's will. [back]

From W.W. Abbot, ed., The Papers of George Washington, Retirement Series, vol. 4, April - December 1799. (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1999), 512-519. Sources: ADS, ViFaCt. Washington did not insert his notes after the entries as the editors have done but, rather, attached them at the end of his Schedule of Property here. He also often used what appears to be periods instead of commas in the dollar amounts; these have all been changed to commas.