Eliza Hamilton’s Visit to the Constitutional Convention

Eliza Hamilton’s Visit to the Constitutional Convention

A recently “discovered” letter suggests that Elizabeth Hamilton (“Eliza” also known as “Betsey”) visited Alexander Hamilton during the Constitutional Convention. Although no Hamilton biographies have envisioned this possibility, it appears that Eliza in fact traveled to Philadelphia in June of 1787. Admittedly, the prospect of Eliza’s trip to the “city where it happened” during the Constitutional Convention raises more questions than it answers. It is hoped that this discovery will attract attention to the compelling documents described below, which will help complete Eliza’s untold story.

From May to September of 1787 fifty-five delegates attended the Constitutional Convention meeting in Independence Hall.[1] Apart from the Pennsylvania delegates who lived in Philadelphia, historians have estimated that as many as nine delegates from six states may been accompanied by their spouses.[2] Based on newly uncovered evidence it appears that Eliza was fearless enough to make the trip to Philadelphia without her husband, Alexander. Nevertheless, Eliza selected good traveling companions, none other than the “Secretary at War,” Henry Knox and his wife, Lucy.

This article is the first in a three-part series setting forth the Eliza “Philadelphia Surprise” Thesis (the Eliza “Philadelphia Surprise” or “PS” Thesis). Part I describes the emerging evidence of Eliza’s trip to Philadelphia. Part II examines evidence that Henry and Lucy Knox traveled to Philadelphia in June of 1787. Part III will provide evidence that Eliza traveled with Henry and Lucy. Part III will also identify questions for fellow researchers who are invited to join this investigation.

It is anticipated that some will be skeptical of the emerging Eliza Philadelphia Surprise Thesis. Although generations of scholars have studied the Constitutional Convention, as far as can be determined none have examined Eliza’s connections to Philadelphia in 1787. As a result, historians have overlooked the very real possibility that Eliza was present in Philadelphia on June 18, the day of Hamilton’s all-day speech.[3]

Admittedly, the Convention’s rule of secrecy would have minimized Eliza’s input on the substantive deliberations over the Constitution.[4] Moreover, there is zero evidence that Eliza entered the Pennsylvania State House (now known as Independence Hall) when the Convention was in session. Yet it remains possible that Eliza may have helped her husband prepare for his one-of-a-kind speech on June 18. Moreover, it is felt that the possibility of informal, behind-the-scenes contributions by Eliza cries out for further examination.

Part I is based on a discussion of two manuscripts and a journal entry. The first “new” source is a letter dated 8 June 1787 from Henry Knox to Rufus King. While Knox was not a delegate to the Convention he was intimately familiar with the issues confronting the nation. His June 8 letter discussed below makes clear that Knox would be arriving in Philadelphia in mid-June with “Mrs. Hamilton.” This letter is the strongest piece of evidence supporting the Eliza Philadelphia Surprise Thesis.

The second critical manuscript is an undated letter from Alexander to Eliza describing their indeterminate separation (hereinafter Hamilton’s undated “love letter”). In the excerpt pictured above, Hamilton writes that “it will be impossible” for him “to submit to a long separation however inconvenient” the expense might be. As it only mentions Hamilton’s three oldest children, the love letter was necessarily written between May of 1786 and April of 1788. The Eliza Philadelphia Surprise Thesis argues that based on the discovery of Knox’s June 8 letter, we can now better understand the timing of Alexander’s undated love letter to Eliza. In other words, the Eliza Philadelphia Surprise Thesis argues that Knox’s June 8th letter is directly connected to Alexander’s undated love letter.

Taking the two letters together, it is now possible to date Hamilton’s love letter as having been written in late May or early June of 1787. A third piece of evidence that factors into the investigation is an intriguing journal entry of an unspecified June payment to Eliza which is contained in Hamilton’s cash book.[5] By connecting together these three pieces of evidence, an image of Eliza’s trip to Philadelphia begins to take shape.

Part II examines the proof that Henry and Lucy Knox traveled to Philadelphia. Part III  will provide additional evidence that Eliza traveled with Henry and Lucy. Part III will also examine a host of unanswered questions which are raised by the Eliza Philadelphia Surprise Thesis. For example, historians have known for decades that Alexander Hamilton departed the Convention at the end of June.[6] Is it possible that Hamilton’s departure was timed to accompany Eliza back to New York? What news did Eliza bring to Philadelphia? Did the three Hamilton children (Philip, Angelica and Alexander Jr.) accompany Eliza on the trip? While there is no immediate answer to these questions, a cursory review of Hamilton’s undated love letter makes clear how much information is unfortunately missing from the historic record.[7]

Knox’s June 8th letter to Rufus King

On June 8th Henry Knox wrote to Massachusetts delegate Rufus King that he would soon be returning to Philadelphia. Although largely overlooked, Knox’s letter is highly significant.[8] The exact purpose(s) of Knox’s June trip is unclear.[9] Nevertheless, it is beyond dispute that Knox was planning to travel to Philadelphia in mid-June. Knox’s June 8th letter indicates that he anticipated setting out from New York “on Sunday” [June 10] and would probably be in Philadelphia “on Tuesday” [June 12].[10] Critically, Knox mentions that Mrs. Knox and “Mrs. Hamilton” would be “of our party.”

Unfortunately, Mrs. Hamilton is only briefly mentioned at the end of Knox’s provocative June 8th letter. Moreover, the Hamilton Papers do not contain any correspondence between Hamilton and Eliza specifically referring to this anticipated trip. For this reason, it is useful to begin with a discussion of Knox relationships with several Convention delegates, his prior time in Philadelphia in May, along the background behind his travel plans.

In May, the same month that the Constitutional Convention convened, Knox attended a meeting of the Society of the Cincinnati also meeting in Philadelphia. Among the officers who attended the Cincinnati meeting were Alexander Hamilton and other wartime colleagues.[11] While in Philadelphia, Knox interacted with Convention delegates who were awaiting the arrival of a quorum for the Constitutional Convention scheduled to begin on May 14.[12]

Due to the late arrival of delegates, the Convention did not officially begin until May 25th. This delay likely permitted Knox ample time to confer with Convention delegates from Virginia and Pennsylvania, the only punctual delegations.[13] As discussed in prior blog posts on StatutesandStories.com, Hamilton was also present in Philadelphia during the third week of May, as is confirmed by the minutes of the Cincinnati on May 17.[14]

As the “Secretary of War,” Knox was intimately familiar with the issues confronting the Convention. In the months leading up to the Convention, Knox was one of the trusted advisors who regularly communicated with Washington.[15] Based on surviving correspondence, it is also clear that Knox maintained open lines of communication with Washington and Massachusetts delegate Rufus King.[16]

Knox’s June 8th letter was not the first to mention Knox’s planned trip to Philadelphia. Rufus King wrote to Knox on June 3rd, indicating that “Mrs. King & myself shall expect you & Mrs. Knox in about six or eight days.”[17] Similarly, on May 29th Knox alerted Washington that he and Mrs. Knox planned to return to Philadelphia “for a few days”:[18]

I hope to be able so to arrange my business as to accompany Mrs. Knox to Trenton in the course of next week, and thence to Philadelphia for a few days, at which some public business requires me to be present.

Washington replied to Knox on May 31st indicating that he was pleased that “we might flatter ourselves with the expectation of seeing Mrs. Knox & you at this place.”[19]

News that Eliza Hamilton would be traveling with Henry and Lucy Knox is not mentioned in King’s June 3rd letter to Knox, or Knox’s correspondence with Washington. Thus, it appears that Mrs. Hamilton’s joining the party was not previously planned. This, in and of itself, may be significant and will be discussed in Part III (pending).

Hamilton’s undated love letter

Hamilton’s undated love letter is an untapped treasure trove. The love letter was sold by Sotheby’s in 2017[20] and is cataloged in the Hamilton Papers.[21] The Eliza Philadelphia Surprise Thesis argues that this love letter was the lynchpin which set in motion Eliza’s trip to Philadelphia with Henry Knox in June. While no definitive answers can yet be provided, it is useful to deconstruct this letter and connect it with known dates and events.

Hamilton begins the undated love letter by recounting that it had been four days since he last wrote to his angel.[22] During those four days he received a letter from Eliza indicating that she was “out of health.”[23] Reporting that he “cannot yet determine what will be our stay here,”[24] Hamilton professes that “it will be impossible for me to submit to a long separation however inconvenient it may be to incur the expense which will attend her coming here.”

While Hamilton was unable to determine the length of time that he would be away from home, he makes clear that this would be a “long separation.” Interestingly, Hamilton also indicates that “I stand in need of every consolation you can give…” Why was Hamilton in need of “every consolation”? Was Hamilton referring to the difficulty he was encountering at the Constitutional Convention?[25] Or was Hamilton merely bemoaning their extended separation? Is it possible that he had multiple reasons why he needed “consolation”?

Professor Syrett and the editors of the Hamilton Papers reason that the undated love letter must have been written between May of 1786 and April of 1788. This conclusion is based on the fact that the letter mentions three Hamilton children, Philip and “the other two.”[26] For a variety of other reasons to be discussed in Part III (pending), the undated letter no doubt falls within this 1786 to 1788 window.

Hamilton was separated from Eliza for three extended periods of time from 1786 to 1788: the Annapolis Convention, the Constitutional Convention and the New York Ratification Convention. While it is possible that the letter was written during the Annapolis Convention, this is exceedingly unlikely based on a letter dated 8 September 1786 from Alexander to Eliza. 

In his September 8th letter written from Annapolis, Alexander expected that the Annapolis Convention would last eight to ten days, not to exceed a fortnight. By contrast, in the undated love letter Alexander was unable to estimate the length of their separation. The Constitutional Convention is thus the likely reason for the “long separation” that Hamilton is referring to in the undated love letter.[27]  Part III (pending) will also describe why the undated love letter does not align with the New York Ratification Convention in Poughkeepsie, which began in June of 1788. 

It is noteworthy that during the Annapolis Convention Alexander Jr. would only have been four months old. It is doubtful that Alexander would have wanted Eliza to travel with an infant child all the way to Annapolis. By June of 1787 young Alexander would have been over a year old, which arguably would have made it easier for Eliza to travel to Philadelphia. One could ask whether Eliza would have been traveling as the mother of young children. It remains unclear whether she took the growing brood of three children with her to Philadelphia. Or, she may have left them in the care of their grandparents or other relatives. Part II will describe that Henry and Lucy Knox left their children in the care of Henry’s brother William.

Note that Hamilton was not afraid of family travel. Alexander and Eliza regularly traveled to Albany. Moreover, when Hamilton was a member of Congress in 1783 he asked Eliza to join him with Philip in Philadelphia. According to Hamilton’s 8 January 1783 letter:

⟨The post my⟩ angel has met with some interruption (I suppose by the river being impassable) which deprives me of the pleasure of hearing from you. I am inexpressibly anxious to learn you have began your journey. I write this for fear of the worst, but I should be miserable if I thought it would find you at Albany. If by any misapprehension you should still be there I entreat you lose not a moment in coming to me. I have borne your absence with patience ’till abo⟨ut⟩ a week since, but the period we fixed for our reunion being come I can no longer reconcile my self ⟨to it.⟩ Every hour in the day I feel a severe pang on this account and half my nights are sleepless. Come my charmer and relieve me. Bring my darling boy to my bosom.

         Adieu Heaven bless you & speedily restore you to yr. fond husband

£100 payment to Eliza in June

Pictured below is a journal entry in Alexander Hamilton’s cash book reflecting a payment of a £100 to Eliza from her brother-in-law, Stephen Van Rensselaer. Unfortunately, it is unclear whether the payment was made in June of 1786 or 1787. If the payment was made in 1787 this could be the very source of funds used by Eliza to take her trip to Philadelphia. On the other hand, if the payment was made in 1786 it would be irrelevant to the Eliza Philadelphia Surprise Thesis.

It is noteworthy that the £100 payment was made to Eliza by her brother-in-law, Stephen Van Rensselaer. Stephen was the husband of Eliza’s sister, Margarita “Peggy” Van Rensselaer (née Schuyler).  If indeed Eliza received the £100 payment in June of 1787, it makes perfect sense that she might have reached out to her wealthy brother-in-law[29] for funds when Alexander was away at the Constitutional Convention.

One might also reasonably ask whether £100 was enough for an out-of-state trip to Philadelphia. The quick answer is that £100 was a substantial sum at the time. In fact, delegates from several states were paid £100 advances before they left for Philadelphia.[30] It is unlikely Eliza would be staying in Philadelphia for long, particularly if she left her children behind. Nonetheless, one can expect that she would have wanted money to go shopping in the nation’s largest city at the time, Philadelphia.

Healthy skepticism and unanswered questions

The significance of Knox’s June 8th letter depends on two key assumptions. First, one can ask whether it is reasonable to assume that the “Mrs. Hamilton” referred to by Knox was Eliza Hamilton?[31] As is evidenced by a lifetime of correspondence, Alexander Hamilton and Henry Knox worked closely together for decades. The Hamilton Papers contain 44 letters written from Hamilton to Henry Knox and 40 letters written from Knox to Hamilton. Apart from their written correspondence, it is reasonably safe to assume that Henry and Alexander were closely connected both socially and politically during the period preceding the Constitutional Convention when New York served as the federal capital (and Hamilton lived on the same street as Federal Hall). In other words, it is logical that Eliza would have traveled with Henry and Lucy Knox, who were likely family friends of the Hamiltons. Indeed, in a letter to Knox dated 11 July 1787 Rufus King described Hamilton as “our very able and sagacious friend Hamilton.”[32] 

The second assumption underpinning this analysis is the expectation that Knox actually traveled to Philadelphia with his wife and Eliza Hamilton. As of the time of publication, it remains to be seen whether the anticipated June trip to Philadelphia actually took place. It is possible, for example, that Eliza or Henry Knox may have taken ill or otherwise been prevented from traveling. Indeed, Knox’s youngest daughter, Caroline, would pass away in August of 1787. It remains unclear, however, when Caroline became ill and whether her illness impacted the planned Philadelphia trip in June.[33] These questions will be discussed in Part II.


[1]        Richard Beeman, Plain, Honest Men: The Making of the American Constitution (2009), 64. Twelve of the original thirteen states, with the exception of Rhode Island, selected seventy-four delegates to attend the Convention. Christopher Collier & James Lincoln Collier, Decision in Philadelphia (2007), 103. State delegations in Philadelphia ranged in size from two (New Hampshire) to eight (Pennsylvania). National Park Service, 1787: The Day-to-Day Story of the Constitutional Convention (1987), 7-8. While only two of its delegates attended the Convention, four delegates were appointed by the state of New Hampshire. As a result, the state to appoint the fewest delegates was New York. Max Farrand, The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787, III:557-558.

[2]        John R. Vile, The Constitutional Convention of 1787: A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of America’s Founding (2005), 1;217; David O. Stewart, The Summer of 1787: The Men Who Invented the Constitution (2007), 44. In some cases the spouse traveled with the delegate to Philadelphia. In other cases the spouse subsequently joined the delegate in Philadelphia during the summer. Vile identifies seven delegates who brought their spouses to Philadelphia: Charles Cotesworth Pinckney (SC), Elbridge Gerry (MA), Rufus King (MA), William Houston (NJ), Edmund Randolph (VA), Pierce Butler (SC) and Alexander Hamilton (NY). Vile further suspects that two other spouses may have traveled to Philadelphia: the wives of Luther Martin (MD) and John Rutledge (SC).

[3]        Although Alexander Hamilton was uncharacteristically quiet during much of the Convention, he set the record for the longest speech, which lasted the entire day on June 18. Farrrand, I:282. Connecticut delegate William Samuel Johnson’s diary famously summarized the day’s activity on June 18 with the one-word description “Hamiltn.” Farrand III:552.

In presenting his own plan “totally” different from the competing Virginia and New Jersey plans, Hamilton offered a third alternative. In so doing, according to Johnson, Hamilton acted with “boldness and decision….” Farrand, I:363. Nevertheless, Hamilton’s June 18 speech was “praised by everyone” but “supported by none.” Id.

[4]        John P. Kaminski, Secrecy and the Constitutional Convention (2005). https://csac.history.wisc.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/281/2017/07/secrecy_essay.pdf

[5]        As set forth below, Hamilton’s cash book evidences a £100 payment to Eliza from her brother-in-law, Stephen Van Rensselaer. If the payment was made in June of 1787 it is highly relevant. Unfortunately, it is unclear whether the payment to Eliza was made in 1786 or 1787.

[6]        Farrand, III:588.

[7]        For example, the first paragraph of the undated love letter refers to a recent letter from Hamilton and a response from Eliza. Neither letter is contained in the Hamilton papers. One can only speculate if these letters were purposely destroyed by Eliza, or might still exist in private collections.

[8]        Knox’s June 8 letter to King is not included in the canon of records of the Constitutional Convention compiled by Max Farrand in 1911 or James Hutson’s supplement published in 1987. This omission may partially explain why generations of historians have failed to consider the significance of Knox’s June 8 letter. Moreover, the letter may have sailed under the radar because Knox was neither a delegate to the Constitutional Convention nor a member of Congress.  The June 8th letter was published in 1894 by Charles R. King, M.D., Rufus King’s grandson. Charles R. King, The Life and Correspondence of Rufus King (1894), 221-222.

[9]        In a letter to Washington dated May 29, Knox indicated that “public business” required him to return to Philadelphia “for a few days.” Farrand, 3:30.  According to Knox:

I hope to be able so to arrange my business as to accompany Miss Knox to Trenton in the course of the next week, and thence to Philadelphia for a few days, at which some public business requires me to be present.”

[10]       While Knox’s intent to travel to Philly is evidenced in his correspondence in May and June, it remains unclear whether he actually traveled to Philadelphia. Scholars are invited to assist with this investigation.

[11]       The minutes of the Society of the Cincinnati indicate that Knox attended the General Session from May 12 to May 17, 1787. Proceedings of the General Society of the Cincinnati, ed. John C. David (1925), 1:21-27. Other Convention delegates at the Cincinnati meeting were David Brearley from New Jersey, Thomas Mifflin from Pennsylvania, Charles Cotesworth Pinckney from South Carolina, Nicholas Gilman from New Hampshire, and Alexander Hamilton from New York.

[12]       Prior to Washington’s entry into Philadelphia on May 13, he dined with several high-ranking military officers, including Knox, General Mifflin (who was a Pennsylvania delegate to the Convention) and William Jackson (who would be elected as the Convention’s Secretary). At the entrance into the city Washington received a military escort and a thirteen-gun artillery salute. The excitement of Washington’s arrival continued with ringing church bells and cheering crowds. Pennsylvania Gazette, 17 May 1787.

It is also likely that Knox attended a dinner with Washington and other members of the Society of the Cincinnati on May 15. Washington’s May 15 diary entry confirms that he “Dined with the Society of the Cincinnati.” https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/01-05-02-0003-0002

[13]       The Virginians and Pennsylvanians made good use of the eleven-day delay between May 14 and May 25. For historian Richard Beeman, this period was “wonderful, serendipitous gift,” nothing less than the “delay that produced a revolution.” Beeman at 57.

[14]       While Hamilton biographers routinely describe Hamilton’s arrival in Philadelphia on May 18th, the Cincinnati minutes establish that he was in town no later than May 17th. Research by Statutesandstories.com argues that Hamilton was in Philadelphia no later than May 16, as suggested by the Pennsylvania Packet on 16 May 1787.

As will be discussed in a pending book, if indeed Hamilton was in town on May 16 he may have attended an important dinner at Benjamin Franklin’s house with the Virginia and Pennsylvania delegations.  https://www.statutesandstories.com/blog_html/hamiltons-arrival-in-philadelphia-new-discoveries/

[15]       Knox was a “trusted confidant” of Washington, who would be appointed by Washington to his cabinet in 1789. Beeman at p. 16. In the months leading up to the Convention Washington consulted with Knox, Madison, and John Jay. Their frank correspondence makes clear that all four concurred that the Articles of Confederation were defective for lack of an “energetic” federal government. Beeman at 31. While there is no record of any correspondence between Washington and Hamilton during this period, there is no doubt that they were kindred spirits with regard to the need for a stronger federal government.

[16]       The close relationship between Knox and Washington is evidenced by twenty-two letters written by Knox to Washington in 1787. Washington replied with ten letters to Knox during the year, including letters written during the Convention.

[17]       Rufus King to Henry Knox, 3 June 1787, Letters of Delegates to Congress, 24:301. Based on King’s June 3 letter, it is possible to infer that King was either notified of the trip while Knox was in Philadelphia in May or was otherwise notified by mail. As the trip from New York to Philadelphia generally took three days, it is foreseeable that Knox wrote to King at the same time that he wrote to Washington, on May 29th. Unfortunately, a copy of such a letter has not been found.

[18]       Henry Knox to George Washington, 29 May 1787, Farrand, 3:30.

[19]       George Washington to Henry Knox, 31 May 1787, Hutson at 38-39.

[20]       Sotheby’s agrees that the lover letter was written between April 1786 and May 1788. Moreover, unlike the Hamilton Papers, Sotheby’s felt confident opining that the letter may have been written during the Constitutional Convention:

Given Hamilton’s reference to a potentially long absence from home, it is entirely possible that the letter was written during his attendance at the Constitutional Convention, May to September 1787.

[21]       Harold C. Syrett, The Papers of Alexander Hamilton (Columbia University Press, 1962), 3:673.

[22]       Hamilton’s prior letter is missing, as is Eliza’s response.

[23]       Because these letters are not included in the Hamilton Papers it is unclear when Eliza was sick, when she recovered, and whether this prevented her from traveling to Philadelphia. Hamilton’s love letter nonetheless contemplates a trip by Eliza during their long separation “however inconvenient it may be to incur the expense” which would attend Eliza’s trip.

[24]       The use of the phrase “our stay here” suggests that Hamilton is part of a large group.

[25]       One could speculate that one source of frustration for Hamilton was the makeup of the New York delegation at the Convention. As described in a prior post on StatutesandStories.com, Hamilton encountered fierce resistance from his New York colleagues on the internally conflicted New York delegation. https://www.statutesandstories.com/blog_html/new-yorks-plan-to-sabotage-alexander-hamilton-at-the-constitutional-convention/

Hamilton, the “most prominent advocate” for the union, was opposed at every step by the union’s “most prominent” adversaries, New York delegates Robert Yates and John Lansing. Indeed, Lansing’s delayed arrival in Philadelphia on June 2nd would likely become a growing source of frustration for Hamilton. Farrand, III:588.

[26]       The third Hamilton child, Alexander, was born on May 16, 1786. The fourth child, James Alexander, was born on April 14, 1788. Thus, the Hamilton Papers conclude that the letter was dated between May, 1786–April, 1788. As indicated above, the discovery of Knox’s June 8th letter helps further pinpoint the date of Hamilton’s love letter.

[27]       The Constitutional Convention satisfies both circumstances set forth in the love letter: 1) it was impossible to predict how long it would last; and 2) it would be a long separation. Indeed, the Constitutional Convention lasted four months from May through September of 1787. Over these four months Hamilton took no less than three trips to Philadelphia in May, August and September.

[28]       Alexander Jr. was born on 16 May 1786. Syrett, 3:673.

[29]       The Rensselaer family manor, Rensselaerswyck, was located up the Hudson River near Albany. It would be very interesting to determine if Stephen was visiting New York City in May or June of 1787. It would also be interesting to determine whether any clues might be found in his records relating to the £100 payment to Eliza.

[30]       Click here for a discussion of delegate compensation in 1787: https://www.statutesandstories.com/blog_html/delegate-compensation-at-the-constitutional-convention-part-i/

[31]       There were other Hamilton families living in Philadelphia in 1787 who were unrelated to Alexander and Eliza Hamilton. For example, Washington’s diary entry for June 1 indicates that he dined with John Penn and spent the evening at a “superb entertainment at Bush-Hill given by Mr. Hamilton.” The festivities at Bush-Hill were attended by more than 100 guests. https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/01-05-02-0002-0006

William Hamilton inherited Bush-Hill from his uncle, James Hamilton, a famous attorney. William Hamilton was a wealthy Philadelphia philanthropist and patron of the arts. https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/01-05-02-0002-0005-0023

[32]      Hutson, 163.

[33]       In a letter to Washington dated 14 August 1787 Knox indicated that his eleven-month-old daughter died on August 11 “of a disease incident to children cutting their teeth in the summer season.” https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/04-05-02-0269

Knox’s correspondence with George Washington indicates that his other daughter, Lucy, had been suffering from an eye condition when he was in Philadelphia earlier in the month. In a letter to Washington dated May 29th, Knox indicates that Lucy’s eye had improved. https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/04-05-02-0185 Washington replied on May 31 that it gave him great pleasure to learn that Miss Lucy’s eye had improved giving rise to “the expectation of seeing Mrs. Knox & you at this place.” https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/04-05-02-0191

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