James Madison Papers

To James Madison from William Jarvis, 15 June 1807

Lisbon 15th: June 1807


It is rarely that such a length of time has past without my having the honor to address you; but being satisfied that you would readily dispense with a letter written merely for the sake of form, I have postponed writing from day to day, in expectation of some sort of occurrence of some interest. But the Swedish Armistice, consequent coolness, or rather misunderstanding between the Courts of London & Stockholm & recall of the Swedish Minister from England are the only articles of moment which have reached here since my last; which Govmt. will undoubtedly be much better informed about long before this will reach America than we are here. It was totally unexpected & has produced a very sensible effect among the English. I shall not venture to offer any speculati⟨on⟩ upon the consequences of this event to persons so infinitely mor⟨e⟩ competent to the forming a correct Judgment. The inactivity of the hostile armies has led to a bele⟨if⟩ here that some negotiation ⟨be⟩tween Russia & France was ca⟨r⟩rying on, but it is not general⟨ly⟩ credited.

In addition to the documents described in the foregoing of the 5 May which went by th⟨e⟩ Brig Criterion, Captn. Bartlet fr⟨om⟩ Boston, I shall take the liberty to inclose a copy of my Note ⟨to⟩ His Excellency Mr d Araujo of the 13 Ultimo & His Excys. ans⟨wer⟩ of the 15th: relative to Mr Burr⟨s⟩ conspiracy & the return of the Treaty. The misunderstanding b⟨e⟩tween England & Sweden, will not have an injurious effe⟨ct⟩ as it regards our difference ⟨re⟩lative to that instrument I have also the honor to inclo⟨se⟩ the protest of Richard Chadwick & others belonging to the Ship Wareham of New York. After about two years Suspension of these violences is it not somewhat Singular that the commanders of the British Men of War, should again ⟨have⟩ authorised them at a moment when it was thought that the two Nations had entered into a treaty of Commerce? When the Search on board Captn. Bush took place not a Sentence was known of the treaty’s being returned but it was generally beleived that it would be ratified; and even when the impressments on board the Wareham took place, its non-ratification was not Credited; so that no apology arising out of its non-ratification ⟨can⟩ be offered. The vexations ar⟨i⟩sing out of a want of arra⟨nge⟩ment relative to our Seame⟨n⟩ or Seamen under our flag must alone, in the mind ⟨of⟩ every reasonable Man wh⟨o⟩ has any regard for his Coun⟨try⟩ fully justify the conduct of the President in its retur⟨n⟩ setting aside the indirect ⟨con⟩trol that was attempted ⟨over⟩ us as it regarded our foreig⟨n⟩ relations. With Entire Respec⟨t⟩ I have the honor ⟨to be⟩ Sir Yr: Mo: Ob: Servt.

Wm. Jarvis

A letter from Mr Montgomery goes enclosed.

P. S. Will also accompany this a copy of a letter from D. L. Hurley first Mate of the Brig Henry Captn. Bush. I suppose he was taken in revenge for his spirited remonstrance to Lieut. Loyd when he searched the Brig in this port. He had an authentic American Protection. The whole of the foregoing documents I forwarded some time since to Genl. Lyman.

DNA: RG 59--CD--Consular Despatches, Lisbon.

Index Entries