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Collection Reference Number GLC02437.04985
From Archive Folder The Henry Knox Papers [0100] May-June 1791 
Title John Macpherson to Henry Knox asking for a job as a reward for his Revolutionary War spying. Wants a job dealing with Algiers and a loan from the government
Date 10 June 1791
Author Macpherson, John (1726-1792)  
Recipient Knox, Henry  
Document Type Correspondence
Content Description Macpherson writes seeking Knox's assistance. Claims he is very poor and does not have "Two Shillings on the Earth." Boasts of what he has done for the nation, claiming "I have enriched it more than any other ever did of my Station." Poverty got him thinking that he could repeat the success he had lecturing on natural philosophy, but he has since given up that idea. Has an interest in some patents still pending, but they are unpaid for. Claims he deserves help when "it is considered, what risque I ran to serve this Country, by going thro' the British Army as a Spy!" Says he deserves to be employed "to compel the Algerines to give up our Subjects, & cease taking any more of Our Vessels." Hopes to at least get a loan from the government, which he promises to repay with interest after his patents go through. Encloses a letter from President Washington (not included) and says he will call on Knox tomorrow. Addressed to "Genl John Knox Secretary of War of the United States."
Subjects Navy  Spying  Land Transaction  Pirates  Revolutionary War General  Politics  Science and Technology  Education  Weaponry  Inventor  Revolutionary War  Global History and Civics  Maritime  Military History  Finance  President  
People Knox, Henry (1750-1806)  Macpherson, John (1726-1792)  
Place written Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Theme Government & Politics; Foreign Affairs; The American Revolution; Education; Naval & Maritime
Sub-collection The Henry Knox Papers
Additional Information Macpherson was a privateer based out of Philadelphia during the American Revolution and later a real estate entrepreneur who worked in the sciences.
Copyright The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History
Module Settlement, Commerce, Revolution and Reform: 1493-1859