Alexander Hamilton Papers

From Alexander Hamilton to Victor Marie Du Pont de Nemours, [30 January 1804]

To Victor Marie Du Pont de Nemours1

[New York, January 30, 1804]

Dr. Sir

I send you three Notes on account of my bond each for 800 Ds2 as agreed.

On Saturday I took the bond in the Country & forgot to bring it to Town with the calculation; so that ⟨I m⟩ust defer the completion of the arrange⟨ment⟩ to my return from Albany.3 But you may consider it as done & in⟨form⟩ your correspondents accordingly. Yrs. with gre⟨at⟩ regard


ALS, Mr. Henry Francis du Pont, Winterthur, Delaware.

1Du Pont served as attaché to the French legation in the United States from 1787 to 1789, as second secretary from 1791 to 1792, and as first secretary from 1795 to 1796. In 1796 he became the acting French consul in Charleston, South Carolina, and a year later he was named consul. Because of the undeclared war with France, John Adams refused to issue Du Pont’s exequatur as consul general in 1798, and Du Pont returned to France. He made another voyage to the United States in 1799 with his family and joined the New York City commission firm of Du Pont de Nemours, Fils & Cie., which had been established by his father, Pierre Samuel Du Pont de Nemours.

In the letter printed above, Du Pont was representing the heirs of Gaspard Joseph Amand Ducher in their efforts to collect a debt H owed to Ducher. For this debt, see H’s “Cash Book,” March 1, 1782–1791; H to Robert Troup, July 25, 1795; Ducher to H, July 4, 1798.

In 1786 Ducher was appointed vice consul ad interim at Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and in 1788 was transferred to Wilmington, North Carolina. He returned to Paris in 1790 and for the next three years sought to induce the French government to adopt a policy of encouraging trade through navigation laws (Frederick L. Nussbaum, Commercial Policy in the French Revolution [Washington, 1923], 14, 17, 35, 271–304).

3H went to Albany in February as one of the defense attorneys in the People v Croswell. For H’s role in this case, see Goebel, Law Practice description begins Julius Goebel, Jr., and Joseph H. Smith, eds., The Law Practice of Alexander Hamilton: Documents and Commentary (New York and London, 1964– ). description ends , I, 775–848.

An entry in H’s Cash Book, 1795–1804, under the date of February 1, 1804, reads: “Expence including journey 110.” A second entry under the date of March, 1804, reads: “Expence (journey down included) 250” (AD, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress).

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