Thomas Jefferson Papers

Notes on New Jersey Patronage, [ca. 5 March–before June 1801]

Notes on New Jersey Patronage

[ca. 5 Mch.–before June 1801]

  • George Maxwell Atty for N. Jersey vice Stockdon resd & Frelinghuysen.
  • Oliver Barnet vice Lowry who is expected to resign for Marshall recommdd. by mr Linn, who says Condit and Kitchell concurred

  • John Hurd (a Brigadr. genl of militia horse) of Middlesex county to be collector (qu.) of the port of Amboy, vice
  • be collector (qu.) fo port of Amboy, vice
    • Bell a refugee officer who was aid to Genl Carlton, fought agt us during the whole war.
    • Judge Patterson’s first wife was Bell’s sister.
  • Hurd was a capt of horse with us during the whole war, good officer, much respected, a good republican.

  • Dunham, supervisor, a very immoral profligate man, complained of in mr Adams’s time, & would have been removed if they could have agreed on a successor. it is believed he is delinquent in his accounts; & that there are papers in the Treasury office against him.

MS (DNA: RG 59, LAR, 1:0665); undated; entirely in TJ’s hand, probably written at three sittings, as indicated by the horizontal rules, the first entries dating from early March; endorsed by TJ: “New Jersey Attorney Marshall.”


Before he left Washington in early March, James Linn recommended George Maxwell as district attorney and Dr. Oliver Barnet as marshal for New Jersey. In April, Linn wrote Peter Muhlenberg that at the urging of New Jersey Representatives John CONDIT and Aaron Kitchell, he had mentioned the two candidates to the president, and Republicans in the state were anxiously awaiting the appointments (Biog. Dir. Cong.; Linn to Muhlenberg, 20 Apr. 1801, in DNA: RG 59, LAR; Linn to TJ, 1 May). Maxwell received his appointment on 26 June, but Barnet did not receive his for another year as it became intertwined with the appointment of John Heard (Hurd). According to his lists of appointments and removals, TJ named Heard marshal of New Jersey in place of Thomas Lowry, “removed for high federalism,” on 28 Mch. At a 17 May Cabinet meeting, however, Heard was designated to be collector at Perth Amboy in place of Andrew Bell, and the next day Gallatin requested, but did not receive, a commission for him. This did not hinder Daniel Marsh, a member of the state executive council, from traveling to Washington in June and returning with the commission as collector of the New Jersey port, although Gallatin reminded the president that Heard had been recommended for the position. In the confusion Heard had not received his commission as marshal either. In August Burr and others became concerned that without the commission Heard would be unable “to discharge the duties at the approaching Court.” For the president’s uncertainty about Heard’s appointment and deliberate delays in sending the commission, see TJ to Gallatin, 21 Aug. 1801. Heard finally replaced Lowry after the meeting of the court and served as marshal until Marsh’s death in April 1802. Heard then became collector and Barnet became marshal as originally proposed in the document above (Carl E. Prince, New Jersey’s Jeffersonian Republicans: The Genesis of an Early Party Machine, 1789–1817 [Chapel Hill, 1964], 237–8; Madison, Papers, Sec. of State Ser., 1:193–4, 362; Kline, Burr description begins Mary-Jo Kline, ed., Political Correspondence and Public Papers of Aaron Burr, Princeton, 1983, 2 vols. description ends , 2:613–14; JEP description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States… to the Termination of the Nineteenth Congress, Washington, D.C., 1828, 3 vols. description ends , 1:403, 432; Appendix I, Lists 3 and 4; Gallatin to TJ, 3 June 1801; TJ to Madison, 28 Aug. 1801; Heard to TJ, 29 Apr. 1802).

Andrew Bell’s sister Cornelia married William Paterson in 1779 (ANB description begins John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes, eds., American National Biography, New York and Oxford, 1999, 24 vols. description ends , 17:120).

In a letter to Burr dated 8 Apr., Joseph Bloomfield noted that Oliver Wolcott, Jr., proposed to remove Aaron Dunham for intemperance. He remained in office because Wolcott and Adams could not agree upon a successor. Bloomfield also noted that “Dunham threatned his Deputys with removal, if they presumed to favor the Democratic interest.” Burr forwarded Bloomfield’s letter to TJ and the president endorsed it as received 29 Apr. On 6 June TJ removed Dunham “for habitual drunkeness” (Kline, Burr description begins Mary-Jo Kline, ed., Political Correspondence and Public Papers of Aaron Burr, Princeton, 1983, 2 vols. description ends , 1:555–8; Appendix I, List 4). For the appointment of Linn as supervisor in place of Dunham, see Linn to TJ, 24 Mch.

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