Washington August 4. 1828
This is the first time I have commenced a direction of any thing to Montpellier with feelings other than those of pleasure. But however painful, the obligation I feel to maintain, in your eyes, that same position which justified you in conferring upon me a responsible Govt appointment, will lead me to justify myself & especially to you, when the character which bore me to yr confidence is assailed. In the present case, I should have said, not a word, had not the attacks in the Telegraph been apparently sustained by Mr Cutt’s note. This gave the thing an air of respect which, without it, it could not have had. I am even to this moment of the opinion that Mr Cutts never would have assumed the ground he has, were he not deceived by a man in the 2d Auditors office who will never forgive me for my attempts at vindicating the principles & labors of yr administration at its most critical period, & who was one of the Hansonites of our Town. Apart from such a man as this, I must still hope Mr C, would have viewed matters in my case, at least as he has viewed them in every other, & I have never required more.
With my best wishes to Mrs Madison, and for a long continuance of health to you both, & happiness, allow me to subscribe myself with sincere & grateful respect Yr Ob St
Tho: L: McKenney
RC (DLC). Docketed by James Madison.