Sender: Richard Henry Lee
Recipient: William Lee
Nominy in Virginia 23d. De<c. 1771>
By meer accident, at Mr. Blains store I met with this opportunity by Mr. Adams, and being taken by surprise, I cannot so fully as I wish answer your letter lately received. If you had recollected, when Montgomerie sailed hence in July, both Loudon and myself were on the Assembly at Williamsburg, (to which place) when we set out, we expected Walker would have sailed in four days, and in consequence of which, I had left my dispatches with the Naval Office for the Liberty. The cause of her not sailing sooner than she did, you certainly know before this time. We are however happy to hear that the ship is arrived at London, and we are now in expectation of her, or the return of another from you in a short time. I think our crops are pretty good, and therefore I hope your ship will get reasonable dispatch. I have promised a young Gentleman of worth in Frederick to import for him a sett of Surveying Instruments, and therefore you will be pleased to send consigned to me and at my expense by the first opportunity to this or Rappahanock river a Surveyors Compass with Ball and Socket, a Surveyors Chain, with a case of Plotting Instruments to contain a paralell ruler - The whole to be of the best kind that can be got for six or 7 pounds sterling - Observe that the Chain is for service in a stony country and therefore must be unusually strong. <Ou>r Assembly is called the 6th of February next when I shall have an opportunity of considering your affairs on that quarter, and will give you then my sentiments on the paragraph of Mr. Treasurers letter as you desire.
In much haste I can only add my love for Mrs. Lee and the Doctor
Your affectionate friend.
R. H. Lee
Lee PapersVirginia Historical Society
Printed in James Curtis Ballagh, The Letters of Richard Henry Lee, Volume 1, 1762 - 1778, pp. 61 - 62. Addressed "Recd, 14 Feb., 1772 Ansd. 16 Do & 25 Orders goods & will write fully soon - "