James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Thomas Auldjo, 4 July 1805 (Abstract)

From Thomas Auldjo, 4 July 1805 (Abstract)

§ From Thomas Auldjo.1 4 July 1805, Cowes. “I have the honor of your circular of 31st of January last from the department of Treasury2 with the forms of accounts to be rendered of the monies that may be received & disbursed for American Seamen which shall be duly attended to—But as no discharges of Seamen have ever yet taken place here to entitle me to demand of the Captains the monies prescribed by Law, I have nothing hitherto to account for on that Score.

“Very Strict laws having passed lately in this Country in regard to quarantine, which will probably very much inconvenience Ships from America, till the Shippers & Captains are informed of the documents necessary to keep them clear of the restrictions, I have as Soon as possible had a number of the inclosed papers printed off3 which if properly attended to, will be a prevention to their meeting any trouble in these ports—If it meets with your concurrence, may I request you will give this paper the necessary publicity.

“Our prices of Wheat are here 11/a 11/6 per bushel weighing 60 pounds—Fine flour 30/a 33/per 112 lbs.

“The navigation of the U.S. goes on uninterrupted in these parts—Only one Ship the Augusta Capt Harradin from Cadiz for Boston has been sent into any port in my district within the present year—this vessel has been released & is gone on her voyage.”4

RC, two copies, and enclosures (DNA: RG 59, CD, Southampton, vol. 1). First RC 2 pp. Second RC 2 pp.; marked “⟨Du⟩;plicate”; in a clerk’s hand, except for Auldjo’s complimentary close and signature. Minor differences between the copies have not been noted. For enclosures, see n. 3.

1Thomas Auldjo (ca. 1757–1823), “the first merchant at Cowes,” was named consul at Poole in 1791 after the British government objected to a foreign consul being appointed to Cowes (Times [London], 22 Nov. 1823; Boyd, Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 19:314, 316, 319; 29:583, 584 n.).

2Albert Gallatin’s 31 Jan. 1805 circular instructed consuls and vice-consuls to report in three forms to the Treasury Department on funds collected from the masters of vessels who discharged sailors according to the third section of the 28 Feb. 1803 act for the further protection of seamen. The first was to be an account of funds received from masters of vessels belonging to U.S. citizens; the second, an account of funds paid to seamen who were U.S. citizens; and the third, the officials’ accounts current with the United States, to be updated semiannually and sent to the Treasury for settlement together with the previous two accounts (DNA: RG 84, Records of the Foreign service Posts, France, Consular Letters Received, vol. 1795–1809). For the “Act supplementary to the ‘act concerning Consuls and Vice-Consuls, and for the further protection of American Seamen,’” see U.S. Statutes at Large, 2:203–4.

3Auldjo enclosed copies, docketed by Wagner, of: (1) a printed certificate (1 p.), to be signed by the local British consul, certifying that none of the cargo was from Turkey, the Barbary regencies, or Egypt or, alternatively, that the cargo was the produce of America or of the country from which the ship sailed, with a handwritten added note: “All Ships provided with a Certificate agreeable to above Form may have communication at Cowes without being subject to any Quarantine Restriction or detention, whether they come in to Import Goods, to receive Orders, by distress, or contrary Winds”; (2) Auldjo’s printed notice of the restrictions in the quarantine act, with an appended list of articles that would subject all ships carrying them to detention unless the captain could produce the above form (2 pp.; signed and dated 1 July 1805 by Auldjo). For the 12 Mar. 1805 Quarantine Act, see 45 Geo. 3, c. 10, printed in Tomlins et al., Statutes of the United Kingdom, 2:261–71. For earlier notice of the act, see James Maury to JM, 1 July 1805, and n. 2.

4On 5 July, Auldjo wrote again (DNA: RG 59, CD, Southampton, vol. 1; 1 p., two copies; the second copy is written as a postscript to the duplicate of Auldjo’s 4 July dispatch), saying: “I have already troubled you with a printed paper relative to the quarantine regulations soon to be enforced in this Country. I now beg leave to inclose a form of the declaration required [not found], which please to affix to the paper already furnished.”

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