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title:“Willian Lee to George Mason”
authors:William Lee
date written:1779-9-25

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last updated:Jan. 22, 2013, 8:16 a.m. UTC
retrieved:Aug. 19, 2018, 7:14 a.m. UTC

Lee, William. "Letter to George Mason." The Papers of George Mason. Vol. 2. Ed. Robert A. Rutland. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1970. 537-38. Print.
File Copy, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass. also in, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond, Va.

Willian Lee to George Mason (September 25, 1779)

Frankfort in Germy. Sept. 25. 1779
I have nothing to add to my letters of the 26 March & 10th May last wch. are as full a reply as I can make to yr. request for my payg. in Europe the bal: I owed you, tho' I have since recd. yr. favor of the 4th of March last. The very sending you my dfts on Mess[rs]. Triplet & Thornton & on Mr. J. Mills, to a candid mind, wou'd have been a decisive proof of my desire to render you all the Justice in my power & notwithstandg. the accuracy of yr. information from Mr. Harrison, it is somewhat fortunate that I am enabled to bring clear proof, whenever 'tis necessary, of my receiving information of yr. bill to Mess[rs]. Jenifer & Hoe before the time you say it was negotiated in Martinique, & it is more fortunate for you that I did receive this intelligence, otherwise it is probable that that bill wd. have met wth. the same Fate as the one in favor of Mess[rs]. J. Gruel & Co., especially if I cou'd have conceived that the paymt of the one wou'd have been the subject of nearly as much offence [to you] as the Non paymt. of the other. With respect to the curious Parisian Protest; a Gentlemen less disposed to censure without just reasons, knowing that I had a B[rothe]r. in Paris (without having a very deep penetration to boast of) might easily have supposed it possible, that in a strange Country, a stranger might mistake one Br. for the other, especially too, as the words of the protest about the Notaries mistake so clearly. That this was the case I have no doubt, because I never saw or spoke to a Notary in France, knowing him to be such, in my whole life; nor did I ever see yr. bill in favor of Jas. Gruel & Co. more than once, & then it was in the hands of Mr Jas. Gruel in Nantes. You will certainly pursue wh[ateve] r yr. own Judgemt. directs, wth. respect to makg. this affair public, but then I hope it will be done fully & fairly & that you will let it be publicly known in Virga. that while you as a Legislator by Laws & ordonnances compel me to receive paper in Virga. for Sterlg. money advanced in London under a positive written agreemt. that the same shou'd be repaid in London, free of all charges & deductions whatever[,] you insist on my payg. in Europe a Sterlg. debt contracted in the ordinary way of business without any such stipulation. If this is conformable to the Golden Rules "Do to yr. Neighbor, as you wou'd yr. neighbor shd. do unto you" I have no Idea of its meaning. I have no right to question the professions of Friendship you are pleased to make for my Family, but my recollection does not furnish me wth. any instance where I have personally experienced it, for when I solicited yr. favors by Letter, some years ago, you did not deign to give me an answer & when you made a single consignmt. to me, you made as large to other houses that were my avowed enemies for no other reason that I ever heard of, but because I enter'd into the same business with them. This I must presume you know because it was publicly known in Virga. & Maryld. I have endeavor'd to imitate the style of Candor in yr. letter to me, therefore take it for granted this will merit yr. full approbation & havg. complyed wth. yr. request of let[ting] you hear from me soon, it only remains for me to assure you of the very high respect wth. wch. &c.
(Signed) W[illiam]. L[ee]

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