« PředchozíPokračovat »
unite the names of federalists & republicans. The way to effect it is to preserve principle, but to treat tenderly those who have been estranged from us, &
dispose their minds to view our proceedings with < candour. This will end in approbation.
TO THOMAS M'KEAN.
WASHINGTON, Mar. 9, 1801. DEAR SIR, I have to acknolege the receipt of your favor of Feb. 20, and to thank you for your con
, gratulations on the event of the election. Had it terminated in the elevation of Mr. Burr, every republican would, I am sure, have acquiesced in a moment; because, however it might have been variant from the intentions of the voters, yet it would have been agreeable to the Constitution. No man would more cheerfully have submitted than myself, because I am sure the administration would have been republican, and the chair of the Senate permitting me to be at home 8. months in the year, would, on that account, have been much more consonant to my real satisfaction. But in the event of an usurpation, I was decidedly with those who were determined not to permit it. Because that precedent once set, would be artificially reproduced, and end soon in a dictator. Virginia was bristling up I believe. I shall know the particulars from Gov. Monroe, whom I expect to meet in a short visit I must make home, to select some books, &c. necessary here, & make other domestic arrangements.
I am sorry you committed to the flames the communication of details you mention to have been preparing for me. They would have been highly acceptable, and would now be very encouraging, if [?] shouldered on two such massive columns as Pena. & Virga., nothing is to be feared. If it were not too troublesome I would still [faded] the communication at some leisure moment. I am sorry to see the
germ of [rest of letter missing].
WASHINGTON, Mar. 9, 1801. DEAR SIR,-By the time you receive this, you will have been at home long enough I hope to take a view of the possibilities, and of the arrangements which may enable you so to dispose of your private affairs, as to take a share in those of the public, and give your aid as Secretary of the Navy. If you can be added to the administration I am forming it will constitute a magistracy entirely possessed of the public confidence, that I shall [faded). There is nothing to which a nation is not equal when it pours all its energies & zeal into the hands of those to whom they confide the direction of their force. You will bring us the benefit of adding in a considerable degree the acquiescence at least of the leaders who have hitherto opposed. Your geographical situation too is peculiarly advantageous, and will favor the policy of drawing our naval resources towards the states from which their benefits and production may be extended equally to all parts. But what renders it a matter not only of desire to us, but permit me to say, of moral duty in you, is that if you refuse where are we to find a substitute ? You know that the knowledge of naval matters in this country is confined entirely to persons who are under other absolutely disqualifying circumstances. Let me then, dear sir, entreat you to join in conducting the affairs of our country, and to prove by consequences that the views they entertain in the
change of their servants are not to be without effect. In short if you refuse I must abandon from necessity, what I have been so falsely charged with doing from choice, the expectation of procuring to our country such benefits as may compensate the expenses of their navy. I hope therefore you will accede to the proposition. Everything shall be yielded which may accommodate it to your affairs. Let me hear from you favorably & soon. Accept assurances of my high & friendly consideration and esteem.
TO THE SECRETARY OF STATE.
J. MSS. (JAMES MADISON.)
WASHINGTON, Mar. 12, 1801. DEAR SIR, -I offer you my sincere condolences on the melancholy loss which has detained you at home: and am entirely sensible of the necessities it will have imposed on you for further delay. Mr. Lincoln has undertaken the duties of your office per interim, and will continue till you can come. General Dearborn is in the War Department. Mr. Gallatin, though unappointed, has stayed till now to give us the benefit of his counsel. He cannot enter into office till my return, and he leaves us tomorrow. In the meantime Dexter continues. Stoddart also accommodated me by staying till I could provide a successor. This I find next to impossible. R. R. L. first refused. Then Genl. Smith refused. Next Langdon. I am now returning on Genl. Smith, but with little confidence of success. If he will undertake 6. months or even 12. months hence I will appoint Lear in the meantime. He promised, if Langdon would take it for six months, he would in that time so dispose of his business as to come in. This makes me hope he may now accept in that way. If he does not, there is no remedy but to appoint Lear permanently. He is equal to the office if he possessed equally the confidence of the public. What a misfortune to the public that R. Morris has fallen from his height of character. If he could get from confinement, and the public give him confidence, he would be a most valuable officer in that station & in our council. But these are two impossibilities in the way. I have ordered my chair and horses to meet me at Heron's on the 22d inst. not that I count on being there punctually on that day, but as near it as I can. I shall be at home a fortnight. I hope you will find it convenient to come on when I do or very soon after. Doctor Thornton means to propose to rent his house to you. It will be some two or three hundred yards distant from your office, but also that much nearer towards the Capitol. We shall have an agreeable society here, and not too much of it. Present my esteem to Mrs. Madison and accept yourself assurances of my constant and sincere attachment.
WASHINGTON, Mar. 17, 1801. MY DEAR SIR,—Your letter of Dec. 6. is just received, and a person leaving this place tomorrow morning for Paris, gives me a safe conveyance for this letter to that place. I shall depend on Mr. Short's finding a conveyance from thence. Yet as I know not what that conveyance may be, I shall hazard nothing but small and familiar matters. My health, which wore a very threatening aspect at the date of the letter alluded to in yours, became soon reestablished and has been very perfect ever since. My only fear now is that I may live too long. This would be a subject of dread to me. It is customary here to wish joy' to a new married couple, and this is generally done by those present in the moment after the ceremony.
A friend of mine however always delayed the wish of joy till one year after the ceremony, because he observed they had by that time need of it. I am entitled fully then to express the wish to you as you must now have been married at least three years. I have no doubt however that you have found real joy in the possession of a good wife, and the endearments of a child. The vetches you were so good as to send by Baltimore came safely to hand; and being by that time withdrawn from my farm into public life again, I consigned them to a friend. The seeds which I sent you were of the Cymbling (cucurbita vermeosa) & squash (cucurbita melopipo) the latter grows with erect stems; the former trails on the ground altogether. The squash is the best tasted. But if you will plant the cymbling and pumpkin near together, you will produce the perfect equivalent of the squash, and I am persuaded the squash was originally so produced and that it is a hybridal plant. I perceive by these inquiries in your letter as well as by your express mention, that my latter letters have not reached you. I have regularly written to you once a year, and in one of these I answered these same inquiries fully. Should you be able to send me any plants of good fruit, and especially of peaches and eating grapes, they will be thankfully received and will be forwarded to me from any custom house of the United States. They should leave your continent as early in autumn as they can be taken up. You mention that E. Randolph expected to recover from Alexander the value of certificates left in the hands of Webb. Webb, Alexander & E. R. are all bankrupt, the first dead. That is desperate therefore ; nor do I know of any thing unsettled of yours in this country, from which anything is to be expected but the price of Colle and