Shortly after George Washington was elected as president, Bishop John Carroll sent him a letter on behalf of American Catholics congratulating him on the post and stressing the need to maintain religious liberty. Washington wrote back, saying, in part: “As Mankind become more liberal they will be more apt to allow that all those who conduct themselves worthy members of the Community are equally entitled to the protection of Civil Government. I hope ever to see America among the foremost Nations in examples of Justice and Liberality.”
More then a century later, when documents were being indexed at a cathedral in Baltimore where the letter was believed to be located, it was discovered that the letter was missing. It was not know since when the letter had been gone. This article from Catholic Review notes that the letter was subsequently found and is now housed at the the Archdiocese of Baltimore — but that it’s also not known when the letter was recovered, either!
Washington’s Letter Vanishes from Baltimore: Was a Link with the Past, Recalling Memories of Constitutional Convention and the Carrolls of Carrollton
From September 10, 1916
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