James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Tench Coxe, 12 January 1813

From Tench Coxe

Philadelphia Jan. 12. 1813


Mr. Eustis, the late Secretary of War, on his way to Boston, remained two or three days here. During the time I conversed unreservedly with him. He informed me that it had been understood at Washington that I was in a very good way in business. I had no opportunity to learn from what source such a representation could have arisen. I understood that it had reached you & was probably credited by you. I determined therefore to venture on the liberty of noticing the subject in a letter, as might injure me.

When the various and long operations in respect to the purveyors office terminated in its discontinuance, I was prompted by many duties to endeavour to get into business. I had little or no expectation, and but little hope. I however made two distinct and successive attempts at plans of business, and I have used every endeavour, which occasion has presented or ingenuity could devise. But it is a truth that the moderate expences attending those endeavours have greatly ex[ceeded?] the trifling benefits. I remain with my large1 without income, without a prospect. I ventured to submit a suggestion to you with respect to the office of Superintendent of Military Stores, which I hope may yet receive your consideration & approbation.

I will not trespass on your time or feelings. I apologize for the only subject, which compelled me to write, as a matter of duty. I could not resist. I have the honor to be with entire respect Sir yr. mo. obedt. & mo. hum. Servant

Tench Coxe

RC (DNA: RG 94, Letters Received, filed under “Coxe”). Docketed as received in the War Department on 1 Feb. 1813.

1Coxe evidently omitted a word here.

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