To Thomas Jefferson
Sepr. 8. 1804
I recd yesterday yours of the 6th. with a return of the letters from Appleton and Savage.1 Under the same cover with this are sundry communications, some of them very interesting. They need not be returned till I can receive them at Monticello, which I expect will happen early in the ensuing week.2
Should the inclosed letter to Mr. Pichon3 be such as you entirely approve, I beg the favor that it be put under cover to Mr. Wagner, to be forwarded by him, after taking an office Copy. Should alterations or additions be thought proper, they can be made on my arrival at Monticello under your personal directions. I have thought it best to decline any expressions which might enter in the smallest degree into the character of the Revolution in the French Govt. or even be personal to the Emperor; altho’ something of the latter kind may probably be looked for. If any such civility, consistent with our principles and our neutrality, should occur as eligible, it may find a place in the communications on the subject thro’ our Minister at Paris, from whom we shall soon receive the original notification by Talleyrand.
Some of the French irregularities in S. Carolina & Georgia are I believe already in the Office of State.4 The collectors are under standing instructions to transmit them. It may be proper to remind them of their duty, if not to call on the Govrs. also. I will take your orders, when I have the pleasure of seeing you.
Pichon signifies that the French frigates, and the aversion of Mrs. P. to approach yet the scene of her misfortune, render their visit more than improbable.5 He does not however absolutely relinquish it. Yours with respectful attachment
RC (DLC: Jefferson Papers). Docketed by Jefferson as received 8 Sept., with his notation: “lre. to Pichon on change of govmt in France. Fr. depredns.”
1. See Thomas Appleton to JM, 26 May 1804, and William Savage to JM, 5 July 1804, PJM-SS description begins Robert J. Brugger et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison: Secretary of State Series (7 vols. to date; Charlottesville, Va., 1986–). description ends , 7:256, 425.
2. It was probably for this visit that Jefferson made up an undated memorandum listing subjects to be discussed with JM, including the appointment of Isaac Neufville as commissioner of loans in South Carolina (see Jefferson to JM, 23 Aug. 1804, ibid., 7:629–30 and n. 2), William C. C. Claiborne’s letters of 25 (two letters) and 30 July and 1 and 4 (two letters) Aug. 1804 (see ibid., 7:520–21 and n. 1, 521–22 and n. 1, 542–43, 547–48 and n. 1, 558–560 and nn., 560 and n. 1), and the advisability of instructing Claiborne “to intimate to Casa Calvo, & the govrs. of Florida & Mexico, to make no change in the position of things” (DLC: Jefferson Papers, filed at the end of 1801).
4. For an earlier report to JM of French irregularities at Charleston, see JM to James Simons, 18 Nov. 1803, PJM-SS description begins Robert J. Brugger et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison: Secretary of State Series (7 vols. to date; Charlottesville, Va., 1986–). description ends , 6:63–64 and nn. 1, 5, and 6.