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Washington County, Georgia, land grant

Washington County, Georgia, land grant

Descriptive Summary

Title: Washington County, Georgia, land grant
Creator: Polock, Isaac, active 1793
Creator: Morris, Robert, 1734-1806
Creator: Nicholson, John, 1757-1800
Creator: Dawson, James, active 1793
Creator: Biddle, Clement, 1740-1814
Inclusive Dates: 1793-1794
Language(s): English
Extent: 0.1 Linear Feet 1 oversize folder
Collection Number: ms1112
Repository: Hargrett Library

Collection Description

Historical Note

This tract of land on Tyger and Pendleton Creek off the Ohoopee opened up one of the largest single tracts to settlement in the 1790s.

Clement Biddle was born in 1740 and died in 1814. He and his brother became patriots before 1776, and he was appointed the Deputy Quartermaster-General by Congress. He fought in the Battles of Trenton, Brandywine, Germantown, and Monmouth, serving under General Washington and General Greene. After retiring from the military in 1780, he continued his work as a merchant.

John Nicholson was born in 1757 and died in 1800. He was a land speculator, financier, and entrepreneur. While he participated in the Revolutariony War, after the conflict, he was appointed auditor (1781) and then Comptroller General (1782-1794) of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. After the war, he became the leading speculator in Pennsylvania and one of the major land jobbers in early America.

"Robert Morris was born in 1735 and died in 1806. He was a leading merchant and revolutionary financier. He became involved with John Nicholson, who, having gained uncertain title to some four million acres of land, now needed capital. In 1794 Morris and Nicholson established the Asylum Company, a vehicle for selling about one million acres of Pennsylvania land to prospective French settlers. The company pooled some six million acres of land located in New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Kentucky, and what became Washington, D.C. Differences between the principals and dishonesty in the use of joint funds by Greenleaf resulted in Morris and Nicholson buying out Greenleaf in 1796. The extensive holdings became involved in legal tangles when neither partner was able to raise sufficient cash to meet their obligations, and both men became bankrupt." "Robert Morris." American National Biography Online. (Retrieved March 26, 2010)

Scope and Content

The collection consists of a letter of attorney to Isaac Polock of Savannah from James Dawson to arrange the sale of 31,000 acres on the Ohoopee River in Washington County, Georgia, notarized at Augusta in 1793 and further notarized in Philadelphia under the request of Robert Morris and John Nicholson on May 7, 1794 by Clement Biddle. Accompanied by a map.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Washington County, Georgia, land grant, MS 1112. Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.

Related Materials and Subjects

Subject Terms

Dawson, James, active 1793 -- Correspondence
Land grants.
Polock, Isaac, active 1793 -- Correspondence

Related Collections in this Repository

See also: Biddle Family Papers. University of Delaware Library, Special Collections Department.

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

1BGovernor's land grant/decree with map