<br /> Lee Letter: n747

Washington and Lee University

Sender: Arthur Lee
Recipient: Robert Morris


Mr. Deane has mentiond in his Acct. that 48252 livres four sous of the
Monies received by him from Mr. Solier was on your Account; & that
the same has been chargd to you by Pliarne Penet & Co.

The Committee are obligd to trouble you again on the subject of his
Accounts1 by requesting you will furnish
them with information as to the fact which Mr. Deane alludes to, &
whether that Sum taken out of the public fund, tho charg’d to you, was
ever credited or refunded to the U. S. It being the express injunction
of Congress that the Committee shoud report on these Accounts, however
unpleasant it may be, they must obey.

I have the honor to be, with great respect, Sir Yr. most obed,

A. Lee


Transcription, Papers of Continental Congress, item 54, U.S. National
Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.

1 For the appointment of this committee, see Lee to Morris, September 26,
1783. In his October 11 reply Morris refused to furnish the committee
with information about his “private Account” because “the
Superintendant of Finance has no Official Knowledge of the private
Concerns of Mr. Robert Morris.” He did concede, however, that Deane
was accountable to the United States for all public funds received
from Pliarne Penet & Co., whose accounts with the United States
had been settled, but not for the 48,252 livres charged to Morris
because Deane had already “deducted it from the gross Sum which he
received from Mr. Solier” and thus “for that particular Sum he must
Account to Robert Morris.” It was a moot question, therefore, whether
the funds had been “credited or refunded to the United States.” See
PCC, item 54, fols. 37 – 38. The committee delivered its report on
November 4, the last day Congress met in Princeton, and recommended
that the commissioner for settling the foreign accounts of the United
States allow Deane his expenses as well as a 5 commission on goods
purchased and shipped “from the time he left Philadelphia in the
public service to the 4th of June 1778.” The committee, however,
denied Deane salary and commission or any reimbursement for funds
expended after that date unless Deane could demonstrate that he had
acted with congressional authorization. See ibid., fols. 1 – 2. The
report was not entered on the journals and it does not appear that
Congress took it up when it reconvened in Annapolis.