LOVELY, LARGE MANUSCRIPT DOCUMENT RELATING TO THE POTOMACK COMPANY, BOLDLY SIGNED BY GEORGE WASHINGTON IN 1785
WASHINGTON, George. Manuscript document signed. Alexandria, Virginia: July 14, 1785. Quarto (7-1/2 by 8 inches), one sheet penned in manuscript and signed on recto, matted and framed with front page of January 8, 1794 Columbian Centinel newspaper and two engraved portraits; entire piece measures 38 by 28 inches. $26,000.
Manuscript document relating to the Potomack Company, ordering William Hartshorne, as Treasurer, to make several payments on its behalf, including advertising in Alexandria, signed by George Gilpin and John Fitzgerald, who were Directors of the Potomack Company and by Washington, its President. Handsomely matted in velvet and framed with a copy of the Columbian Centinel dated January 8, 1794, which features an article about the company, and with two portraits.
The Potomac Company was formed in 1784 to help facilitate navigation and trade along the Potomac River for the benefit of both Virginia and Maryland and to aid in western expansion. It was responsible for the Patowmack Canal along with several skirting canals which succeeded in opening the river up for the shipment of bulk goods. The company was taken over by the Chesapeake and Ohio Company in 1828. "Retirement, after a brief readjustment period marked by depression and restlessness, ushered in a joyful period in his life. He busied himself by tending to his farming; Mount Vernon now extended ten miles along the Potomac and as many as four miles wide and consisted of five separate farm operations. In fact Washington needed to work his holdings intensively to overcome the sizable indebtedness he had accumulated during the Revolution. He entertained an endless procession of guests. He plunged enthusiastically into promoting a scheme long dear to his heart, the construction of a canal connecting the Potomac with the interior waterways that flowed from the Ohio-Mississippi system" (ANB).
Some separation along old fold lines that appear to have been partially repaired. Small area of toning in upper right corner. Some ink transference from folding touches Washington's signature. A splendid framed piece, boldly signed.