Front Page Titles (by Subject) TO JOHN PARKE CUSTIS. - The Writings of George Washington, vol. IV (1776)
The Online Library of Liberty
A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.
Search this Title:
TO JOHN PARKE CUSTIS. - George Washington, The Writings of George Washington, vol. IV (1776) 
The Writings of George Washington, collected and edited by Worthington Chauncey Ford (New York and London: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1889). Vol. IV (1776).
About Liberty Fund:
Liberty Fund, Inc. is a private, educational foundation established to encourage the study of the ideal of a society of free and responsible individuals.
The text is in the public domain.
Fair use statement:
This material is put online to further the educational goals of Liberty Fund, Inc. Unless otherwise stated in the Copyright Information section above, this material may be used freely for educational and academic purposes. It may not be used in any way for profit.
TO JOHN PARKE CUSTIS.
New York, 24 July, 1776.
I wrote to you two or three posts ago, since which your letter of the tenth instant is come to hand. With respect to the proposed exchange of lands with Colonel Thomas Moore, I have not a competent knowledge of either tract to give an opinion with any degree of precision; but from the situation of Moore’s land, and its contiguity to a large part of your estate, and where you will probably make your residence, I should, were I in your place, be very fond of the exchange; especially, as the land you hold in Hanover is but a small tract, and totally detached from the rest of your estate. What local advantages it may have I know not. These ought to be inquired into, because a valuable mill seat often gives great value to a poor piece of land (as I understand that of yours in Hanover is). I have no doubt myself, but that middling land under a man’s own eye, is more profitable than rich land at a distance, for which reason I should, were I in your place, be for drawing as many of my slaves to the lands in King William and King and Queen as could work on them to advantage, and I should also be for adding to those tracts if it could be done upon reasonable terms.
I am very sorry to hear by your account that General Lewis stands so unfavorably with his officers. I always had a good opinion of him, and should have hoped that he had been possessed of too much good sence to maltreat his officers, and thereby render himself obnoxious to them.
We have a powerful fleet in full view of us,—at the watering-place of Staten Island. General Howe and his army are landed thereon, and it is thought will make no attempt upon this city till his re-enforcements, which are hourly expected, arrive.1 When this happens it is to be presumed that there will be some pretty warm work. Give my love to Nelly, and compliments to Mr. Calvert and family, and to others who may inquire after, dear Sir, your affectionate.
Mrs. Washington is now at Philadelphia, & has thoughts of returning to Virginia, as there is little or no prospect of her being with me any part of this summer. I beg of you to present my Love to my Sister and the children, and compliments to any inquiring friends, and to do me the justice to believe, that I am, &c.1
[1 ]“The ships mentioned in my letter of the 21st. to have been in the Offing, got in that day, and are supposed to be part of the Scotch fleet, having landed some Highlanders yesterday.”—Washington to the President of Congress, 23 July, 1776.
[1 ]“The General being sensible of the difficulty and expence of providing Cloaths, of almost any kind for the Troops, feels an unwillingness to recommend, much more to order, any kind of Uniform. But as it is absolutely necessary that men should have cloaths, and appear decent and tight, he earnestly encourages them use of Hunting Shirts, with long Breeches made of the same Cloth, Gaiter fashion about the Legs, to all those yet unprovided. No Dress can be had cheaper, nor more convenient, as the wearer may be cool in warm weather, and warm in cool weather, by putting on undercloaths, which will not change the outward Dress, Winter or Summer. Besides which, it is a dress which is justly supposed to carry no small terror to the enemy, who think every such persons a complete marksman.’—Orderly Book, 24 July, 1776.