From George Washington
[Philadelphia, June 6, 1793]
Upon a mature consideration of your communication to me of the 3d. instant,1 recommending a still further Loan in Holland, if obtainable, to the amount of 3,000,000 florins—and stating, that in case the recommendation should meet my ideas, my special approbation thereof would be proper, I have thought it necessary, in order to make the subject clear to my mind, before any steps are taken in it, to request you to give me information on the following points—vizt.
1st—Whether all the monies, borrowed under the Acts of the 4. & 12. of Augt. 1790,2 have been expended on their respective objects? If not, what is the balance?
2d.—Under which of the two Laws do you propose that a loan should be opened?
3d.—If under one, or the other, or both, what is the balance remaining unborrowed, of the two sums allowed to be borrowed?3
4. To what use is the money, proposed to be borrowed, to be applied?
6. June 1793.
LC, George Washington Papers, Library of Congress.
1. Upon receipt of H’s letter of June 3, 1793, Washington submitted it on June 4 to Thomas Jefferson for his opinion (GW description begins John C. Fitzpatrick, ed., The Writings of George Washington (Washington, 1931–1944). description ends , XXXII, 487). In his opinion on the proposed loan, dated June 5, 1793, Jefferson stressed the need for additional information on the purposes of the loan and on the necessity of borrowing to meet the payments on the French debt, since “uncertainty with respect to the true state of our account with France & the difference of the result from what has been understood, shows that the gentlemen, who are to give opinions on this subject, must do it in the dark …” (AD, letterpress copy, Thomas Jefferson Papers, Library of Congress).
2. “An Act making provision for the (payment of the) Debt of the United States” (1 Stat. description begins The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America (Boston, 1845). description ends 138–44 [August 4, 1790]); “An Act making Provision for the Reduction of the Public Debt” (1 Stat. description begins The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America (Boston, 1845). description ends 186–87 [August 12, 1790]).
3. The August 4, 1790, act authorized the President to borrow a sum not exceeding twelve million dollars (1 Stat. description begins The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America (Boston, 1845). description ends 139); the August 12, 1790, act stipulated that the sum of two million dollars might be borrowed (1 Stat. description begins The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America (Boston, 1845). description ends 187).