James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Daniel Parker, 20 December 1813

From Daniel Parker

Decr. 20th. 1813.

The within may be considered fair data from which to estimate the term of service of the other regular troops except the fourteen Regts. of Infy. from the 26th. to 39th. inclusive which amount to about 7000 and are twelve months men.

The whole number of regular troops now in service is estimated at 32000.

D. Parker


Strength of the Army at French Mills & Chateaugy viz Non Commd. Officers Musicians, Artificers & privates 7137.

1813 Terms of Service will expire 248.
1814 do. 1213.
1815 38.
1816 93.
1817 3.105.
1818 1549.
During the War 891.
Total 7.137
To which add 564
the dates of whose enlistments are not known.

Taken from Acting Adjutant General Ninian Pinkney’s Return of December 8th. 1813.

RC and enclosure (DNA: RG 59, ML). Two copies of a covering note similar to the RC—one in Parker’s hand, undated, and the other in an unidentified hand, dated 21 Dec. 1813—and three copies of the enclosure are filed in DNA: RG 107, LRUS, W-1813 (although labeled T-1813), with materials docketed by Parker: “Copy of an estimate given to Col. Troup / Supposed amount of all the Regts. and corps in service 31,242 Decr. 18th. 1813. Note as far as returns have been received this estimate appears to large.” (Congressman George M. Troup of Georgia was chairman of the House military affairs committee.) In addition to minor differences in phrasing, the copies of the covering note vary from the one Parker sent to JM in that they give the total number of troops in service as 31,000, and contain the added sentence: “After deducting the 7000 one year’s men by this data it will appear that five sevenths of the remaining 24,000 will be in service at the beginning of the year 1817.” The materials filed with the copies of the note and enclosure include 1) a draft of a 29 Dec. 1813 letter from John Armstrong to Troup, in reply to Troup’s to Armstrong of 22 Dec. 1813 (DNA: RG 107, LRRS, T-191:7), stating that of the 31,000 men in service, the effective force was only 8,012, and the “actual deficiency” in troop strength therefore 22,988, which could be made up either by increasing the enlistment bounty or by conscription, the latter of which Armstrong preferred; 2) a draft of a bill, in Armstrong’s hand, providing for conscription through classification of the militia; 3) a statement of the “estimated strength of the Regular Troops in the service of the United States,” giving the number of men in each regiment of artillery, dragoons, infantry, and the rifle regiment as well as the location in which each regiment was serving, with penciled additions indicating that 21,030 soldiers out of a total of 31,242 were part of the “Permanent establishment,” 9,790 were enlisted for one year, and 422 for five years or during the war; and 4) a statement of troop strength for three separate corps, consisting of detachments from various regiments, at Sackets Harbor in October, November, and December 1813, totaling, respectively, 1,127, 257, and 795 men.

Index Entries