James Madison Papers

To James Madison from William Crawford, 7 September 1812

From William Crawford

Adams County Penna. Septr. 7th. 1812


I hope you will pardon this intrusion in the midst of those momentuous affairs which must now press upon your attention. At the request of Mr. Lloyd1 I now address you in his behalf. I have witnessed some experiments on his late discovery. I presume not on being competent to decide its merit. But it appears to me worthy of a full & fair trial. As, either in the army or navy, it might be advantageously employed—if success[f]ull. Mr. Lloyd is extremely sollicitous to have the fate of his discovery determined—as, if it shall fail, his family requires his attention to some other pursuits. In the mean time his uncertainty whether he may be soon called on by the government to test his discovery prevents his entering on any business of importance. I understand that he addresses you himself on the subject of his wishes.2 If consistent with your performance of other public duty—your relieving him from his present anxiety will be highly acceptable to one who is with sincere esteem & High respect your fellow citizen

Wm. Crawford


1James Lloyd of Adams County, Pennsylvania, had been working on the construction of a “liquid combustible shell grenade and serpentine rocket,” for which he was to receive a patent on 11 May 1813 (ASP description begins American State Papers: Documents, Legislative and Executive, of the Congress of the United States … (38 vols.; Washington, 1832–61). description ends , Miscellaneous, 2:229).

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