Presuming on the privilege of a former acquaintance, and your well known disposition to oblige, I take the liberty to apply to your Excellency for your advice and assistance.
Your old acquaintance, my brother, Ralph McNair, died at Richmond, Virginia, last October. The care of his children has consequently devolved on me, and unfortunately all his estate for their support consists of Debts in your State. I intend in the course of next Spring to go and look after them, but the accounts we have here of the proceedings of your Legislature are such as give me uneasiness. We are told that you have positively refused to ratify some of the articles of the treaty of peace, particularly that one which regards those in my situation. I lately wrote to Mr. Cornelius Harnett (?) desiring time to apply to the Governor for the time being, to procure me a pass for a certain time, but hearing of your Election, I take the liberty of this application and request you to inform me how the Law stands with regard to those who left the Country in 1777—and if necessary that you would send me a pass.