Revolutionary War general (1745–1796) whose daring tactics earned him the nickname “Mad Anthony.” After demonstrating his exceptional military abilities at Ticonderoga, Stony Point, and West Point, Wayne served in the Pennsylvania legislature and as a delegate to the Constitutional Convention. Following a year in the U.S. Congress, Wayne, at Washington’s request, emerged from ‘retirement’ to lead an expedition in the Northwest Indian War. ALS signed “Anty Wayne,” one page both sides, 6.25 x 6.25, June 14, 1782. Retained draft of a letter to Major John Rudolph. In part: “I have had the pleasure of Capt. McQueen’s company & am much obliged to you for your friendly letters! I am pleased to hear that Col. Lee is made happy in Miss now Mrs Lee, he will but ill brook the idea of constrain in the field of Venus. Though I am inclined to believe that he will concede…the Rubicon & will not be bound by any Contract…until he returns again…You have a worthy officer at the head of it there.” Signed at the conclusion by Wayne, with his signature over an address panel addressed to him. Intersecting folds, two passing through single letters of signature, repaired paper loss to second integral page, a couple small pencil marks, and scattered toning and wrinkling, otherwise very good condition.
In June 1782, Wayne was in Georgia fighting Native Americans allied with the British. He had been ordered south following the surrender of Cornwallis, and after several engagements with the British, would take Savannah in July. In this letter, he discusses the April 1782 marriage of Colonel Henry ‘Light-Horse Harry’ Lee to Matilda Ludwell Lee, whose beauty gained her the name the ‘Divine Matilda.’ Wayne praises the union, but questions Light-Horse Harry’s ability to remain faithful, wryly remarking, “he will but ill brook the idea of constrain in the field of Venus.” Lee had resigned his commission several months earlier after Yorktown, citing fatigue and displeasure with the manner he was treated by other officers, and later became the governor of Virginia and the father of Confederate general, Robert E. Lee. Wayne also mentions Captain John McQueen, who was special envoy from General Washington to the Marquis de Lafayette. A desirable letter tying together two heroes of the Revolution, written with the end of the war in sight. Pre-certified John Reznikoff/PSA/DNA and RR Auction COA.