James Madison Papers

From James Madison to David Humphreys, 5 January 1803

To David Humphreys

Department of State January 5. 1803.


The President has received the letter you addressed to him on the 1st. Inst.1

As the constitution of the United States has left with Congress the exclusive authority to permit the acceptance of presents from foreign Governments by persons holding Offices under the United States, the President has thought it most proper that the ornaments addressed to Mrs. Humphreys by the Queen of Spain should be returned into your hands, without deciding how far the Constitution may or may not be applicable to this particular case. The Casket will accordingly be herewith delivered.2 With sentiments &ca.

James Madison.

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