James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Alexander J. Dallas, 13 May 1815

13 May 15

Dear Sir.

I send a report on the organization of the peace establishment for your consideration. The first General Order proposed, is, also, sent; the second General Order will conform, with some slight exceptions to the Report of the Board; and the remaining two General orders will be in substance what the report states. I will forward them to you, as fast as I can put them into form; but if you approve the Outline, be so good as to sign your approbation at the foot of the Report, which will put the whole subject in order for the record, and enable me to begin the publications.

Mr. Monroe left us this morning. Mr. Crowninshield has sent Sailing Orders to Commodore Decatur, with a confidential instruction, as to any danger that may present itself in Europe.

Col. George Croghan has resigned. Shall his resignation be accepted, and another name substituted? Or shall we wait until we see the effect of his being announced in the Army Register? I am, Dr. Sir, Most respectfully & faithfully Yrs.

A. J. Dallas


1. The exceptions from the general reduction of the military establishment, as contemplated in the act of Congress, seem to be necessary, and they are few, to wit:

(1) The adjutant and inspector-general.

(2) The quartermaster-general.

(3) The apothecary-general and two assistants.

(4) Two garrison surgeons, and ten garrison surgeons’ mates.

(5) Two deputy paymasters-general.

To supply vacancies, created by resignations of the first appointments on the peace establishments, all the officers are declared to be held provisionally in service.

To secure a prompt settlement of accounts, all officers intrusted with public money are held in service until they render their accounts.

2. The brigade inspectors and brigade quartermasters are to be taken by the brigadier-generals from the line, in the usual way, and cannot, therefore, be named in the Register.

3. Dr Waterhouse and Dr. Elzy are substituted for Dr. Thomas and Dr. Watkins, reported by the Board. Dr. Bronaugh is retained, as Mr. Monroe thinks there would be suggestions of a disagreeable kind were he to be struck off. I find all officers, of all parties, speaking well of him here, and lamenting the affair with Colonel Coles as a personal one.

4. I have substituted H. Wheaton, of New York, as a judge advocate, instead of R. H. Winder, reported by the Board. Mr. Wheaton’s talents are unquestionable; and it is desirable, on many accounts, to gratify him.


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