James Madison Papers

To James Madison from John Sibley, 10 August 1805 (Abstract)

From John Sibley, 10 August 1805 (Abstract)

§ From John Sibley. 10 August 1805, Natchitoches. “By the request of Governor Claiborne, I have the Honour of forwarding to you herewith, a coppy of a French Manuscript that by accident come into my possession.1 It was found Amongst the papers of the late Governor Messier of the Province of Taxus;2 he died at St. Antonio, & after his death his family return’d Again to Natchitoches where they had before lived, And this Manuscript was brought in amongst his private Books and papers, I procur’d it from his Son Athanaise de Messier esqr.2 a very worthy Man now the Treasurer of this County. It is written in a clear handsome hand in a large folio Bound Volum, with wide margin. The Original is now in my possession. The expence of Coppying it is $85. (viz).

Pierre Graciole’s acct. 25 days @$2. $50
25 days boarding ditto 25
Paper Stationry &c 6
Mr. Vin P(ie)re. 2 days comparing the Coppy. 4

RC and Tr (DLC: Jefferson Papers). RC 1 p.; docketed by Wagner. Tr docketed by Jefferson.

1For the manuscript and Claiborne’s request for a copy, see PJM-SS 9:431 and nn. 1–2.

2Parisian native Athanase de Mézières (d. 1779) was one of the French army officers retained by Spain after that country took control of Texas and Louisiana. A longtime resident of Natchitoches, he served as lieutenant governor of that district from 1769 to 1779 (Athanase de Mézières and the Louisiana-Texas Frontier, 1768–1780, trans. and ed. Herbert Eugene Bolton, 2 vols., Spain in the West [Cleveland, 1914], 1:79–80, 84 n. 104, 121).

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