Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from George Day Welsh, 13 October 1806

Madeira 13th. October 1806


The death of Marien Lamar Esqr. Consul in Madeira for the United States has caused as customary the necessity of a temporary Agent being appointed; that honour has been conferred on me; and it has therefore become my duty to make the Requisite Communications arising from such a change.

Impressed with the conviction that all situations under the Government of the United States are bestowed only according to Merit, and Confident that my pretensions are not unreasonably presumptuous, I take the liberty of appealing immediately to You, Sir, by offering myself as a Candidate to fill the truly respectable & dignified Office of Consul of the United States in Madeira, entreating your pardon for the freedom thus used, in occupying your valuable time; how far I am justified in aspiring to that Office, your superior judgement will decide on perusing the facts stated hereafter.

First. I beg leave, Sir, to hand you the Certificate of my Citizenship; my deceased Father Capn. Enoch Welsh served in the American Army, during the Revolution; my Mother, and Relations are residing in the different States of Maryland, Pennsylvania, & Massachusetts; of these facts should you consider proofs requisite I can produce them.

Secondly. Seventeen Years residence in this Island (during which period I have visited my Native Country) has enabled me to attain a perfect knowledge of the Manners, Customs, and Language of the Portuguese Nation, these you well know, Sir, are necessary qualifications for a Consul.

Lastly—On the honor, and integrity of my Character it does not become me to dwell, from the accompanying testimonies, you cannot, Sir, but infer that my reputation is well established and will bear the strictest scrutiny; it is to the conviction generally entertained of my adequateness that I attribute the honour now conferred on me in being singled out as the person most fit to take charge of my Country’s Interest in this Island.

I presume, Sir, you are now persuaded that my sollicitation for the appointment is not undeserving your attention, and flatter myself with the hope that your decision will be favorable.

The Nomination by the Governor precludes the possibility of my personally solliciting the honorable Office; should it however be necessary, your Orders, Sir; to that effect shall with all possible expedition be obeyed.

Inclosed I have the honour to transmit your the Original document of my Nomination by the Government of this Island.

I feel confident that I shall escape the charge of presumption in importuning You, Sir, for a Situation, which according to your ideas of justice will be given only to the meritorious.

I have the honour to remain with the greatest Respect

Sir Your Most Obedient Humble Servant

George Day Welsh

DNA: RG 59—LAR—Letters of Application and Recommendation.

Index Entries