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The President's House in Philadelphia


By Edward Lawler, Jr.

Paris, one of Washington's slaves, worked as a stableboy at Mount Vernon. He was younger than Austin and Giles, probably a teen-ager in April 1789 when he was brought to New York City to work in the stables of the presidential residence. He may have accompanied Washington on his Northern tour in October and November of that year. Paris was brought to Philadelphia in November 1790, and almost certainly lived in the slave quarters adjoining the stables of the President's House.

In March 1791, Paris accompanied Washington on his Southern tour, but his misbehavior on the trip angered the President. As punishment, Washington left him at Mount Vernon in June 1791, and returned to Philadelphia without him.

There was a good deal of sickness at Mount Vernon in the autumn of 1794. Washington's overseer writes him of Paris's death in October of that year.

(This biographical sketch is partially based upon the unpublished work of Mary V. Thompson, Research Specialist, Mount Vernon Ladies' Association.)

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Copyright ©1999- by the Independence Hall Association, a nonprofit organization in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, founded in 1942. Publishing electronically as On the Internet since July 4, 1995.