Writing from Mount Vernon just a few months after his marriage, George Washington sends an envoy to pick up a chestnut mare purchased by his new brother-in-law, Colonel Burwell Bassett. To Henry Churchill he states, "I was in hopes we should have had the pleasure of seeing you at Mount Vernon in yo[ur] way up - Mrs. Washington (who joins in her Compliments) impeaches you of a breach of promise in failure of this, and I don't know a better method of attonement, than coming soon and doubling the intended time of stay."

This letter is published in W. W. Abbot, ed., THE PAPERS OF GEORGE WASHINGTON: COLONIAL SERIES, vol. 6 (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1988), 338.


ALS (Autograph Letter Signed) One large sheet of paper is folded in half to create four pages. The first page contains the entire text of the letter, the inside pages are blank, and the fourth page (verso when closed) serves as the letter cover. Watermark, center of sheet, significant loss in center of watermark design. Similar to Gravell, Foreign Watermarks 453. The only difference is that on the document's watermark the "V" has a star below it.


August 9, 1759




Ink, laid paper, red wax seal


Overall (open): 9 in. x 14 1/2 in. (22.86 cm x 36.83 cm)
Other (closed): 9 in. x 7 1/4 in. (22.86 cm x 18.42 cm)

Credit Line

Purchase, 1981


Verso, center of page, in brown ink:
To / Colo. Henry Churchhill / In / Fauquier County


Recto, at end of letter, in brown ink:
I am sir / Yr Most Obedt. Servt. / Go. Washington

Object Number


Colors (Beta)

Mount Vernon's object research is ongoing and information about this object is subject to change. For information on image use and reproductions, click here.
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