James Madison Papers

To James Madison from James Leander Cathcart, 24 December 1807

Madeira Decr: 24th: 1807.


By the Brig Apollo ⟨Ca⟩ptn: Goldsbury who sails immediately Ihave only ⟨ti⟩me to inform you that Sir Samuel Hood with four ⟨sa⟩il of the Line & five Frigates & anumber of Transports ⟨wi⟩th General Beresford & four thousand Troops on board ⟨are⟩ now anchoring within two Cables length of the ⟨for⟩tifications of this City Some of whom have ⟨a⟩lready dropt their Stern Anchors & have Springs ⟨   ⟩ their Cables, flat bottomed Boats out & apparently ⟨m⟩aking every preparation to land their Troops ⟨and⟩ cannonade the Town in case of resistance Three British officers have come onShore & are ⟨t⟩his moment at the Governors, who has called a ⟨co⟩uncil of War & as the London of ninety Guns ⟨o⟩ne of the Ships that accompanied the Prince of ⟨the⟩ Brazils from Lisbon touched here on the 11th: Inst: ⟨& ga⟩ve us information of his having abdicated the ⟨t⟩hrone of his Ancestors, it is the general opinion ⟨th⟩at no hostilities will take place & that the Troops will be landed & permitted to take possess⟨ion⟩ of the Fortifications without opposition, but whether the British intends holding this place⟨e⟩ in deposit for the Crown of Portugal or to conver⟨t⟩ it into a British Colony is not yet known.

By the next opportunity Iwill give you t⟨he⟩ particulars In the mean time Ihave the hono⟨r⟩ to continue with respectful Esteem Sir Your Obed. Servant

James Leander Cathcart

P S. 3 P M It is reported that everything is amicably adjusted & that the British troops are to land in the morning! Appearances justifies the report

4 P M The Troops have commenced landing without opposition

DNA: RG 59—CD—Consular Despatches, Funchal.

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