James Madison Papers

To James Madison from William Jones, 13 January 1814

From William Jones

Treasury Department January 13th. 1814


In pursuance of the resolution of Congress, of the 19th. of March 1812, directing the Secretary of the Treasury to employ a person to digest and reduce to such form as Shall be most conducive to the interests of the United States, a Statement of the number, nature, extent, Situation and value of the arts and manufactures of the United States1 &c Tench Coxe Esqr. of Philadelphia, was employed for that purpose.2 I have now the honor to transmit for the Use of the Senate, two Series of tables as prepared by him, exhibiting the Several Manufactures of the United States as returned by the Marshals and Secretaries of Territories and their assistants in the year 1810, first by States and territories, and Secondly, in every county in the Union.3

These tables are accompanied by two essays, or collections of facts and observations prepared also by Mr. Coxe, relating to the State of the manufactures of this country and the motives which exist for affording encouragement and extension to them.4 I have the honor to be Very respectfully Sir your most Obedient Servant

W Jones
acting Secretary of the Treasury

RC and enclosures (DNA: RG 46, Legislative Proceedings, President’s Messages, 13A-E4). RC in a clerk’s hand, signed by Jones. JM forwarded the documents to the Senate on 15 Jan. 1814 (ibid.). For enclosures (printed in ASP, Finance, description begins American State Papers: Documents, Legislative and Executive, of the Congress of the United States … (38 vols.; Washington, 1832–61). description ends 2:666–812), see nn. 3–4.

1Jones here quoted the first half of the resolution, which continued: “together with such other details, connected with these subjects, as can be made from the abstracts and other documents and returns, reported to him by the marshals and other persons employed to collect information in conformity to the second section of the act of the first of May, one thousand eight hundred and ten, and such other information as has been or may be obtained, which the subject will admit of; and that he report the same to Congress.” The legislation to which the resolution referred required census officials to collect information on manufacturing in accord with instructions to be given by the secretary of the Treasury (U.S. Statutes at Large, description begins The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America … (17 vols.; Boston, 1848–73). description ends 2:605, 786).

2On 8 Dec. 1812 Coxe submitted his report to Albert Gallatin, who requested extensive revisions. Coxe completed them by 21 June 1813 and sent the report to Jones, now acting in Gallatin’s stead, but Jones delayed forwarding the documents to Congress until both houses passed resolutions requiring that he do so (Cooke, Tench Coxe, 498–500; Annals of Congress, description begins Debates and Proceedings in the Congress of the United States … (42 vols.; Washington, 1834–56). description ends 13th Cong., 2d sess., 573, 935).

3The first set of tables (29 pp.), organized by type of manufacture, gave the number of manufacturing establishments, quantity of goods, and total dollar value of twenty-four categories of manufactured goods for each state or territory for which information was available. Coxe also included two additional tables, one organized by state or territory (1 p.) and the other by type of manufacture (1 p.), showing the total value of U.S. manufactures, according to the figures submitted in 1810, as $127,694,602; a third table (1 p.), adjusting those figures upward to compensate for missing information and positing an actual total value for manufactures of $172,762,676; tables showing U.S. imports and exports of manufactured goods (3 pp.); and tables giving the value, quantity, and number of establishments producing goods “of a doubtful nature” such as flour, sugar, and lumber (7 pp.), which Gallatin had insisted be removed from the main tables, since he considered them to be agricultural rather than manufactured products (Cooke, Tench Coxe, 499). The second set of tables (46 pp.), organized by states and territories, gave the value, quantity, and number of manufacturing establishments for each type of manufacture in each county of the state or territory for which information was available.

4In his 21 June 1813 letter to Jones (1 p.) covering the report, Coxe expressed the hope that the essays (78 pp.) would “not be deemed useless or improper,” since “all pertinent facts appeared to be valuable, as indicating the true state of the body politic, in its various members, and operations.” He accordingly provided an extensive body of information, focused in the first essay on demonstrating manufacturing’s utility to agriculture, commerce, the fisheries, and national defense, and in the second on the development and current status of specific types of manufacturing. Perhaps in response to Gallatin’s observation that he should have combined the two essays and eliminated extraneous material (Cooke, Tench Coxe, 499), Coxe stated near the beginning of the second essay that the information repeated there was “adduced in a Strict practical view,” whereas in the first essay he had used it for persuasive purposes.

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