Documentary Editing, Association for


Date of this Version


Document Type



Documentary Editing, Volume 22, Number 3, September 2000.

ISSN 2476-1796 (electronic); ISSN 2167-1451 (print)


2000 © the Association for Documentary Editing. Used by permission.


The four-volume Retirement Series of The Papers o/George Washington includes the ex-president's correspondence from March 4, 1797, the day following John Adams's inauguration as the nation's second president, until December 10,1799, four days before Washington's death. The fifth and final subset of The Papers and the third to be completed, it provides us with an immeasurably richer portfolio on the final years of Washington's life than is available from John C. Fitzpatrick's previously published The Writings of George Washington from the Original Manuscript Sources, 1745-1799 (Washington, 1931-1944), While Fitzpatrick published a substantial number of the letters -written by Washington during this period, he only occasionally reproduced portions of other documents the former president generated or letters Washington received.