From John Adams1
Quincy [Massachusetts] October 17. 1798
I have received, last night, a Letter from His Excellency Governor Jay, inclosing a Copy of an Act of the Legislature of New York for the further Defence of that State and for other Purposes.2 The Governor Observes that it appears to be the intention of that Act, that the Money appropriated in it, 150,000 dollars, Shall be laid out only in the manner which the National Government will recognize as usefull and adviseable, and His Excellency proposes to my Consideration whether it would not be expedient to authorize Major General Hamilton, as a national officer in whom Great Confidence may be placed to concert with the Governor the Plan of laying out the Money to the best Advantage, and to appoint the General to superintend the Execution of it.
I have not hesitated to comply with the Governors Request, Saving all Rights of the Legislature of the United States.
Accordingly I hereby request you Sir, to concert with His Excellency the Plan and to superintend the Execution of it, at least untill some other Arrangement shall be made, if any other should hereafter be thought expedient.
With great Esteem I have the Honor to be, sir your most obedient and humble sert
Major General Alexander Hamilton
ALS, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress; LC, Adams Family Papers, deposited in the Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston; copy, in James McHenry’s handwriting, Adams Family Papers, deposited in the Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston.
1. For background to this letter, see the introductory note to H to James McHenry, June 1, 1798. For John Jay’s letter to John Adams, see Jay to H, September 26, 1798, note 2.
2. On October 17, 1798, Adams wrote to Jay in reply to Jay’s letter of September 26: “… I shall not hesitate to comply with your Excellency’s Request so far as to authorize General Hamilton to concert with you, the Plan of laying out the Money in question to the best Advantage and to appoint him to superintend the Execution of it” (ALS, Columbia University Libraries; LC, Adams Family Papers, deposited in the Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston; copy, in John Jay’s handwriting, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress; copy, Dr. Frank Monaghan, Washington, D.C.).