Letter, Martha Washington to Fanny Bassett Washington, October 23, 1789

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  • Letter, Martha Washington to Fanny Bassett Washington, October 23, 1789

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Title

Letter, Martha Washington to Fanny Bassett Washington, October 23, 1789

Subject

Martha Washington, Fanny Bassett Washington

Description

This letter is from Martha Washington to her niece Fanny. Written just months after George Washington assumed the presidency, it is notable for Martha’s comments regarding her feelings about being First Lady. Martha clearly chafed at many of the restrictions imposed by her new public role (image courtesy of The Historical Society of Pennsylvania).

Date

1789-10-23

Language

eng

Additional Item Metadata

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Text

My dear Fanny                                       New York October the 23d 1789

I have by Mrs Sims sent you a watch it is one of the cargoe that I have so long mentioned to you, that was expected, I hope is such a one as will please you - it is of the newest fashon, if that has any influence on your tast - The chain is of Mr Lears choosing and such as Mrs Adams the vice Presidents Lady and those in the polite circle wares. It will last as long as the fashon - and by that time you can get another of a fashonable kind - I send to dear Maria a piece of Chino to make her a frock - the piece of muslin I hope is long enough for an apron for you, and in exchange for it, 1 beg you will give me the worked muslin apron you have like my gown that I made just before I left home of worked muslin as I wish to make a petticoat of the two aprons - for my gown - Mrs Sims will give you a better account of the fashons than I can - I live a very dull life hear and know nothing that passes in the town - I never goe to the publick place - indeed I think I am more like a state prisoner than anything else, there is certain bounds set for me which I must not depart from - and as I can not doe as I like I am obstinate and stay at home a great deal -

The President set out this day week on a tour to the eastward Mr Lear and Major Jackson attended him - my dear children has had very bad colds but thank god they are getting better My love and good wishes attend you and all with you - remember me to Mr & Mrs L Wn how is the poor child - kiss Maria I send her two little handkerchiefs to wipe her nose

Adieu
I am my dear Fanny yours
most affectionately
M Washington

Mrs F Washington
Mount Vernon
Favored by
Mrs. Sims

Original Format

Autograph Letter Signed

Files

Collection

How to Cite this Item

"Letter, Martha Washington to Fanny Bassett Washington, October 23, 1789," in Martha Washington, Item #13, http://www.marthawashington.us/items/show/13 (accessed September 30, 2014).