George Washington writes endorsement for Lawrence Washington's estate sale

    George Washington Autograph Endorsement Containing the Name of Lawrence Washington. One page, 9.5" x 14.25", n.d. [ca. 1753], n.p. [possibly Mount Vernon]. The endorsement in George Washington's hand on the verso reads, "A List of Bonds given/ for Sundries sold from/ the Estate of Maj. Law./ Washington". The document is entitled "List of Bonds for Sundrys purchased at the Sale of the Estate of Law Washington Esq. Also the Amt. of Sundrys purchased by Sundry persons for which no bond is Taken" and contains ruled columns of eighty-four names with monetary amounts spent by each. The first fifty-four names do not have a bond amount, though their purchases amount to £136. 16s. 8p. The remaining thirty names did furnish bonds; their purchases amount to £249 14s 2p. Included in this list are "Maj. Washington [George Washington had been promoted to major in the Virginia militia in 1752]" and "Col. Lee". The total amount sold at the estate sale was £306 10s 10p.

    In 1743 when George Washington was eleven, his father died. His elder half-brother Lawrence stepped-in to help raise the boy. Shortly before Lawrence's death in 1752 of tuberculosis, the two brothers traveled to Barbados hoping that the new climate would cure Lawrence. Though Lawrence did not get better, this trip was George's only one out of the area that would become the United States (and his source for smallpox). After Lawrence's death, his estate was left to his wife Anne. None of their four children lived to adolescence, so after Anne died in 1761, George-not yet thirty-inherited Lawrence's estate, including the 2,500-acre Mount Vernon plantation. This well-preserved document is toned; a small amount of separation at some folds, none which affect Washington's endorsement. Very good.

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    Auction Dates
    June, 2009
    16th-17th Tuesday-Wednesday
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