<br /> Lee Letter: b252

Washington and Lee University

Sender: Richard Henry Lee
Recipient: William Whipple

My dear Friend

Judging of your heart by my own I cannot suppose that either of us will conceive ourselves neglected by an interrupted correspondence in the present state of things. It must certainly be some other cause than neglect which can produce such an effect between two persons whose friendship is founded on virtue tried in severest times – For my part I must cease to live before I cease to love those proved Patriots with whom I early toiled in the vineyard of American liberty. The same reasons that I find had prevented you, have also discouraged me from writing, and nothing more so than the uncertainty of conveyance. It is disagreeable to write to a friend when the mind is cramped, and a free communication of sentiments prevented. Capt Simpson safely contrived to me your letter with the very agreeable present of Fish, for which I return you many thanks The fish were fine and furnished me with frequent opportunities whilst I regaled my friends here, to reconize the worth of the bounteous hand by which we were so delightfully fed, But I was never made so happy as to see either Capt. Simpson or your relation They came not on my way or I in theirs. I sent one of my sons to entreat the pleasure of their company, but he was not fortunate enough to meet with them. I was in great hopes that the Major would have honored me with his Company here whilst Capt Simpson’s business detained him in the Country. We have indeed as you have observed suffered our share of the calamities of War, and I hope it may furnish us with that best kind of improvement which is furnished in the school of adversity – You may see by the last published Resolves at New York that the of our Assembly published that the last arrived delusion at New York is not likely to make a greater impression than the old ones had done. I fear Poor Weaks has gone to the bottom of the Sea with a very valuable Cargo and every Soul but one who was supported three Days on a ladder before he was picked up. An attempt is said to have been made to Assassinate Dr. Franklin who is only Slightly wounded on the ribs.

Richard Henry Lee


Langdon CollectionHistorical Society of Pennsylvania

Printed in James Curtis Ballagh, The Letters of Richard Henry Lee, Volume 2, 1779 – 1794, pp. 274 – 75.