From Albert Gallatin
[29 June 1801]
As I wrote to Gen. Muhlenburg on the subject of T. Coxe being appd. Collector by him—Would it not be well to write immediately, as his Commission is made out, that he must be silent on the subject? Or in what other manner is it thought fit to communicate to him the non acceptance of the Collectorship by T.C.?1
That office is so valuable that P.M. having promised to give it as we had decided, it might be eligible still to dispose of it. It is probable he would comply if it was mentioned at once—Otherwise he may say he had engaged it—
That Collectorship worth 1,500 dollars—Ash is the incumbent Carson alias Rt. Slender would like it
Meredith Treasurer would take that or surveyor of supplies instead of Treasury—and Habersham might be prevailed perhaps to take Treasury in lieu of Post-master—The Salaries are equal 3000 drs. each—Treasury a sinecure requires only integrity & a very large security—Mr Meredith told me this day that he had a strong inclination to resign this fall—Mrs M. is always sick in this place—Any thing offered in Phila. will confirm him.
RC (DLC); undated; addressed: “The President”; endorsed by TJ as received 29 June and so recorded in SJL with notation “Deptmt. of Treasury [T.C.].”
James Carson applied to Gallatin for a position in May 1801. Having taught school in Philadelphia for ten years, he sought less sedentary employment. He identified himself as the author of the essays signed “Robert Slender,” but Philip Freneau used that pen name in 1787 and has been credited with the popular letters that appeared in the Philadelphia Aurora between 1799 and 1801 (Gallatin, Papers description begins Carl E. Prince and Helene E. Fineman, eds., The Papers of Albert Gallatin, microfilm edition in 46 reels, Philadelphia, 1969, and Supplement, Barbara B. Oberg, ed., reels 47–51, Wilmington, Del., 1985 description ends , 5:32; Stafford, Philadelphia Directory, for 1800, 29; Letters on Various interesting and important Subjects; Many of which have Appeared in the Aurora. Corrected and Much Enlarged. By Robert Slender, O.S.M. [Philadelphia, 1799]; Jacob Axelrad, Philip Freneau: Champion of Democracy [Austin, 1967], 161, 172, 333; Lewis Leary, That Rascal Freneau: A Study in Literary Failure [New Brunswick, N.J., 1941], 148–9, 309–17; Donald H. Stewart, The Opposition Press of the Federalist Period [Albany, 1969], 496–500).
Samuel Meredith assumed duties as treasurer of the United States in September 1789. He held the office until he retired in late 1801 and returned to Philadelphia (ANB description begins John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes, eds., American National Biography, New York and Oxford, 1999, 24 vols. description ends ; Meredith to TJ, 29 Aug. 1801).
1. Gallatin drew a brace in the left margin encompassing this paragraph and wrote: “An answer to this is requested.”