Front Page Titles (by Subject) TO EDMUND RANDOLPH, GOVERNOR OF VIRGINIA. - The Writings of George Washington, vol. XI (1785-1790)
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TO EDMUND RANDOLPH, GOVERNOR OF VIRGINIA. - George Washington, The Writings of George Washington, vol. XI (1785-1790) 
The Writings of George Washington, collected and edited by Worthington Chauncey Ford (New York and London: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1890). Vol. XI (1785-1790).
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TO EDMUND RANDOLPH, GOVERNOR OF VIRGINIA.
Mount Vernon, 28 March, 1787.
Your favor of the 11th did not come to my hand till the 24th, and since then till now I have been too much indisposed to acknowledge the receipt of it.1
To what cause to ascribe the detention of the letter I know not as I never omit sending once and often twice a week to the post office in Alexandria. It was the decided intention of the letter I had the honor of writing to your Excellency the 21st of December last to inform you, that it was not convenient for me to attend the convention proposed to be holden at Philadelphia in May next; and I had entertained hopes, that another had been, or soon would be, appointed in my place, inasmuch as it is not only inconvenient for me to leave home, but because there will be, I apprehend, too much cause to arraign my conduct with inconsistency in again appearing on a public theatre, after a public declaration to the contrary, and because it will, I fear, have a tendency to sweep me back into the tide of public affairs, when retirement and ease is so essentially necessary for and is so much desired by me.
However, as my friends, with a degree of solicitude which is unusual, seem to wish for my attendance on this occasion, I have come to a resolution to go, if my health will permit, provided from the lapse of time between the date of your Excellency’s letter and this reply the executive may not (the reverse of which would be highly pleasing to me) have turned their thoughts to some other character; for, independently of all other considerations, I have of late been so much afflicted with a rheumatic complaint in my shoulder that at times I am hardly able to raise my hand to my head, or turn myself in bed. This consequently might prevent my attendance, and eventually a representation of the State, which would afflict me more sensibly than the disorder that occasioned it.
If, after the expression of these sentiments, the executive should consider me as one of the delegates, I would thank your Excellency for the earliest advice of it; because, if I am able and should go to Philadelphia, I shall have some previous arrangement to make, and would set off for that place the 1st or 2d of May, that I might be there in time to account personally for my conduct to the general meeting of the Cincinnati, which is to convene the first Monday of that month. My feelings would be much hurt, if that body should otherwise ascribe my attending the one and not the other occasion to a disrespectful inattention to the Society, when the fact is, that I shall ever retain the most lively and affectionate regard for the members of which it is composed, on account of their attachment to me and uniform support upon many trying occasions, as well as on account of their public virtues, patriotism, and sufferings.
I hope your Excellency will be found among the attending delegates. I should be glad to be informed who the others are; and cannot conclude without once more and in emphatical terms praying, that, if there is not a decided representation in prospect without me, another may be chosen in my room without ceremony and without delay, for the reason already assigned. For it would be unfortunate, indeed, if the State, which was the mover of this convention, should be unrepresented in it. With great respect, I have the honor to be your Excellency’s most obedient servant.
[1 ]From Governor Randolph’s Letter.—“I must call upon your friendship to excuse me for again mentioning the convention at Philadelphia. Your determination having been fixed on a thorough review of your situation, I feel like an intruder when I again hint a wish, that you would join the delegation. But every day brings forth some new crisis, and the confederation is, I fear, the last anchor of our hope. Congress have taken up the subject, and appointed the second Monday in May next, as the day of meeting. Indeed, from my private correspondence, I doubt whether the existence of that body, even through this year, may not be questionable under our present circumstances.”—Richmond, March 11th.