Richmond Oct: 20. 1807
I now forward to you Major Newton’s letter of the 17th. being the only one received since that of the 13th enclosed to you by a former mail. From the letter now enclosed, I should be led to suppose that the British Vessels had not returned since they left our waters as mentioned in the letter of the 13th.; but some doubts on this point are raised by a paragraph in a Norfolk paper of the 14, which states that the Bellona & Ville de Milan were still on this Station—I have not as yet appointed a Successor to Major Newton, to command the two companies of Militia now in service, as the gentleman whom it was contemplated to appoint, is not now in Norfolk—I did not suppose it indispensebly necessary to make the appointment immediately, as I believed that Laurie would not permit any intercourse on terms compatible with our honor; and the two companies having no connection with each other, and being engaged on distinct services, they could not suffer for the want of a superior officer for a short period—In the mean time, I have directed the Captain of the company stationed near the Capes, to make to me daily reports—
I have the honor to be with the highest respect. Sir yr Ob. St
Wm H: Cabell
DLC: Papers of Thomas Jefferson.