Washington May 6 1815.
Mr Baker inform’d me in the interview which I lately had with him, that the British Commanders would deliver up the posts with the exception of Michilimackinac without delay, & just as soon as barracks could be rebuilt for the troops to be removd thence to St Joseph’s, at the latter place, Michalk. would also be restord. He has written me to this effect I have answerd his note & pressd an early, & indeed immediate surrender of that post also, & asked whether Mobile had been surrenderd. I will send you to morrow his reply if recd., with copies of the preceding papers.
I made a slight alteration in the letter to Onis, on the paragh towards the end relating to his having not produced a lettre of credence from Ferdd. In the copy you have, it is stated that the appointment of the central junta, was no proof of the approbation of Ferdd. I have alter’d it, by stating that that appointment, was not a sufficient authority for this govt to act on, thereby sustaining more explicitly & distinctly, the ground taken in the other parts of the letter.
Mr Purviance arrivd yesterday, in better health than I had expected. He was in Paris when the Emperor enterd. The army he says is enthusiastically with him, & the nation rather with him, than with the Bourbons, who had given general disgust to the army, & to some classes of the people. Mr Purviance had hoped to obtain a Secryship to one of the legations abroad, & I had contributed to inspire it before he went abroad I have told him it could not be conferrd on him. I have offerd him the vacant clerkship in the dept of state, lately held by J. Brent, which he will probably accept. He will undoubtedly add credit as well as information, to the dept., if he enters it.
Mr Purviance says that Mr. Erving complaind in unqualified terms of the appointment of J. Brent to the secysp. to the legation at Madrid as interfering with his rights.
Col: Aspinwall will accept the consulship at London.
The papers say that Castine is evacuated, & others state, that the movment in France has induced orders for the recall of many regts in Canada. It will I suspect relieve us from all questions of that kind. with affecte regard.
My family getting better, I intend to leave this for Richmond, abt Thursday next. Your suggestion of a visit by the other members of the Cabinet to be extended to Monticello, would be very gratifying to them, tho’ some denunciations would probably follow it, as a measure taken in consequence of late events in France.
Should you address any thing to ⟨me⟩ not to be seen by others, which may arrive possibly, after I leave this separate it from the other papers, marking the envelope private.
Baker asked me if the order suspending the discharge of the army had reference to the events in Europe? I told him we looked too little at European occurences; that we thought of our constituents more than of the European powers. That in truth, the army could not have been disbanded at on the first of May, it not having been paid, & the report for reducing it being sent to you only at that time.
Col: Owings owner of ⟨Chantrebury⟩ with several others have remonstrated against the principle on which the reduction is made He is a respectable patriotic officer, as is Major Taylor. I have endeavourd to tranquilize. Their paper is sent on to you.
Major Marsteller, who merits much, says that a naval officer is necessary at Alexa., & solicits the appointment.
DLC: Papers of James Madison, Rives Collection.