James Madison Papers

From James Madison to Archibald W. Hamilton, 16 April 1822

To Archibald W. Hamilton

Apl. 16. 1822


I have just recd. your letter of the 10th. inclosing copies of letters from Judge Livingston,1 Mr. Brown,2 & Docrs. Flood3 & Cochrane.

Not being able to furnish any information relative to the peculiarities of your case; or to your personal worth not already authenticated to the Government from sources more directly & intimately acquainted with both, I perceive no grounds on which I could interpose a special recommendation in your behalf. All that I can say, and I say it very cheerfully, is that from the impression made on me by the marked proof given of your love for your Country, and by the testimony borne to the amiable & honorable features of your private character, I shd. learn with pleasure that it had been found practicable to substitute for the discontinued office, some equivalent respect for your sacrifices and qualifications.

Draft (DLC).

1Henry Brockholst Livingston (1757–1823) of New York was a classmate of JM’s at the College of New Jersey, from which he graduated in 1774. A Revolutionary War veteran and a lawyer, who served several terms in the New York legislature, Livingston also served as a justice of the New York Supreme Court. Thomas Jefferson appointed him to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1806, and he continued in that post until his death (Richard A. Harrison, Princetonians, 1769–1775: A Biographical Dictionary [Princeton, N.J., 1980], 397–406).

2This may have been James Brown (1776–1835), a Virginia-born lawyer, who served as U.S. senator from Louisiana, 1813–17, and 1819–23, and as U.S. minister to France, 1823–29.

3This may have been William Flood (ca. 1775–1823), a New Orleans physician, who held various offices in the Louisiana territorial government (Jared William Bradley, Interim Appointment: W. C. C. Claiborne Letter Book, 1804–1805 [Baton Rouge, La., 2002], 557–59).

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