To Robert Smith
Monticello Sep. 19. 1801.
The letters of the 7th. 8th. 11th. & th. inst. from yourself and your chief clerk came to hand the day before yesterday. consequently that of the 7th. must have slept a week by the way somewhere. I now return the warrants for the midshipmen signed. I rejoice at the event of your election. it gives solidity to the Union by gaining a legislative & ensuring an Executive ascendancy to republicans, from Georgia to Rhode island inclusive; for I have considerable hopes of a like issue in Delaware. it’s most important consequence is a federal Senator which [assures] us an equality in the Senate, even if the elections of SC. Delaware & Vermont should all go against us. I inclose a letter for Genl. Dearborne but his distance and the pressure of time obliged me to answer to the Indian commrs. myself by acceding to their proposition to change the place of meeting with the Choctaws.—we learn that Dale’s squadron sailed from Gibraltar on the 4th of July, leaving there the Tripoline Admiral with a 28. & 16. and having been assured by him that it was peace between the two nations. but that a few days after the Philadelphia was observed in sight. I imagine Dale had learnt the declaration of war by Tripoli, & sent the Philadelphia [back] & perhaps might be with her himself to cruise for the Admiral. I think the latter certainly got back to Tripoli.—would it not be better to keep the letter to Genl. Dearborne, as I presume we may expect him soon at Washington, where I depend on being myself on or before the last day of [the month.—] I sincerely condole with you on the loss in your family. I have […] to sympathize in these afflictions by having experienced them […]. time and resignation are the only effective physicians, all philosophy on [these] sufferings of nature being vanity. Accept assurances of [my sincere] & respectful attachment.
PrC (DLC); faint; at foot of text: “The Secretary of the Navy.”
Letters: Abishai Thomas wrote in Smith’s absence on 7 Sep., sending abstracts of warrants drawn by the Navy and War Departments, and of balances on hand, for the week ending 5 Sep. (RC in DLC, at foot of text: “The President,” endorsed by TJ as received 17 Sep. and “Warrants,” and so recorded in SJL; FC in Lb in DNA: RG 45, LSP). At the request of John Newman, chief clerk of the War Department, who was absent, Thomas also enclosed a copy of a letter from Benjamin Hawkins to Henry Dearborn, 7 Aug., which advised Dearborn of Hawkins’s arrival at Southwest Point and noted consultations among the Cherokees about the anticipated meeting with the commissioners (Tr in DLC; in Newman’s hand and attested by him; at head of text “Copy”; printed in Foster, Hawkins description begins Thomas Foster, ed., The Collected Works of Benjamin Hawkins, 1796–1810, Tuscaloosa, Ala., 2003 description ends , 361). Writing to TJ on 8 Sep., Smith sent warrants for William Newman, Noble W. Glenn, Henry J. Cobb, and Abijah Weston as midshipmen. All of them were on board the Boston and had been appointed “some time since,” but had not yet received their warrants (RC in DLC, in a clerk’s hand, signed by Smith, at foot of text: “President United States,” endorsed by TJ as received 17 Sep. and so recorded in SJL; FC in Lb in DNA: RG 45, LSP). Thomas, writing again on the 14th in Smith’s absence, sent abstracts of warrants drawn by the Navy and War Departments, and abstracts of balances on hand, for the week ending 12 Sep. (RC in DLC, at foot of text: “The President,” endorsed by TJ as received 17 Sep. and “Warrants,” and so recorded in SJL; FC in Lb in DNA: RG 45, LSP).