George Washington wrote this letter very shortly after his marriage and gave precise directions to John Alton, probably the manager of his estate at Mount Vernon, to prepare for "our coming" referring to his home-coming with his bride, Martha Washington. Washington requested that the house be very well cleaned, fires be made in the rooms, chairs and tables brought out, beds made, and the staircase polished. He concludes, "Enquire abt in the Neighborhood, & get some Egg's and Chickens, and prepare in the best manner you can for our coming…"

This letter is published in W. W. Abbot, ed., THE PAPERS OF GEORGE WASHINGTON: COLONIAL SERIES, vol. 6 (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1988), 200.


ALS (Autograph Letter Signed) One full page. Letter with integral letter cover on verso. Large watermark, center of sheet. Gravell, Foreign Watermarks 21.


April 1759




Ink, laid paper


Overall: 10 3/4 in. x 7 1/4 in. (27.31 cm x 18.42 cm)

Credit Line

Purchase, 1923


Verso, bottom center, upside down, in brown ink:
To / Jn. Alton / at / Mount Vernon


Recto, lower right corner, in brown ink:
G. 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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