A Letter from George Washington, November 30, 1785

February 25, 2010 – May 7, 2010

Edward Savage's painting of West Front of Mount Vernon. 1787-92. Courtesy of Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association

National Museum of American History
1300 Constitution Ave., NW
Washington, DC

2nd Floor, East Wing, Albert Small Documents Gallery

See on Map Floor Plan

On view is the letter George Washington wrote on November 30, 1785, to David Stuart, a trusted associate and stepfather to Washington's grandchildren. Washington wrote it during the short period of his first retirement—1783 to 1787—after serving as commander in chief of the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War. It addresses many of the central issues of the day concerning the future of the country under the Articles of Confederation, the first constitution of the United States from 1781 to 1788.

The letter remained in the Stuart family until 2009, when it was acquired by the museum through a donation of Dr. Peter Buck.