From Hugh Williamson
New York 28th May 1790.
While you are considering of a proper Person for Governor of the Territory ceded by North Carolina I take the Liberty of requesting that you would be so good as to enquire whether Mr William Blount would not probably discharge that Trust with Honour to himself and advantage to the Public.1 Those People who had most of them been separated from the State for some Years, have been toren by Factions and very disorderly; Some address will be required in governing them and I think there is not any other Man who possesses the Esteem and Confidence of both Parties so fully as Mr Blount, for some of the Leaders of both Parties have assured me that they knew no Man in whom they could be so fully united.
It is true that Mr Blount has a considerable Quantity of Land within the ceded Territory, but he has none to the Southward of it, and he must be the more deeply interested in the Peace and Prosperity of the new Government. Perhaps it is because I have many Relations and some Land there, given me by the State, that I am the more anxious to see it prosper.
Mr David Campbell, who lives near Holsten and is an assistant Judge under the State of N. Carolina, of a fair Character and respectable abilities, appears to be a proper Person for a Judge.2
Mr Howel Tatum formerly a Continental officer, now a Lawyer in that Country whom I have ever considered as a Man of Honour and respectable abilities might be a proper Person to Discharge the Duties of Secretary.3 I have the Honour to be With the utmost Consideration Sir your most obedient and very humble Servt
1. William Blount (1749–1800), a prominent North Carolina merchant, planter, and politician, was born in Bertie County, North Carolina. He served as paymaster of North Carolina troops in 1777 and as a member of the North Carolina general assembly in 1780–81 and 1783–85. He represented North Carolina in the Continental Congress in 1782–83 and 1786–87, was a member of the Philadelphia Convention in 1787, and served in the state senate from 1788 to 1790. He served as superintendent of Indian Affairs 1790–96 and Governor of SW Territory 1790–96. A Federalist, Blount advocated ratification of the Constitution in the second North Carolina convention in 1789. Blount was unanimously recommended for governor by the North Carolina delegation to the House of Representatives (see John Steele to GW, 4 June 1790, John B. Ashe to GW, and Timothy Bloodworth to GW, both 5 June 1790). GW nominated him for the post on 7 June 1790 (see GW to the U.S. Senate, 7 June 1790).
2. David Campbell (1750–1812) was born in Virginia and served in the Virginia militia from 1776 to 1780, rising to the rank of major. He served as clerk of the courts in Washington County, Va., from 1777 to 1780 and was admitted to the bar in 1780. Moving to western North Carolina, Campbell was elected judge of the superior court of the state of Franklin. In 1787 he represented Greene County in the North Carolina house of commons. Campbell was also recommended for territorial judge by Timothy Bloodworth (see Bloodworth to GW, 5 June 1790) and suggested for the office by John B. Ashe (see Ashe to GW, 5 June 1790). GW appointed him judge of the Southwest Territory in 1790 (see GW to the U.S. Senate, 7 June 1790). Campbell served in that office until 1797, when he was commissioned a judge of the Tennesee Superior Court of Law and Equity. He resigned in 1807 and was later appointed territorial judge for the Mississippi Territory (Ely and Brown, Legal Papers of Andrew Jackson, description begins James W. Ely, Jr. and Theodore Brown, Jr., eds. Legal Papers of Andrew Jackson. Knoxville, Tenn., 1987. description ends 361–62).
3. Howell Tatum (1753–1822) served as an officer in the 1st North Carolina Regiment from 1775 until 1780, rising to the rank of captain. He was captured at Charleston in May 1780 and paroled for the rest of the war (Heitman, Historical Register, description begins Francis B. Heitman. Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army during the War of the Revolution, April, 1775, to December, 1783. 1893. Rev. ed. Washington, D.C., 1914. description ends 393). In 1787 he was an unsuccessful candidate for judge of the superior court of Davidson County, N.C. (later Tennessee). Tatum thereafter established himself at Nashville where he was admitted to practice in 1789 and later served as a judge of the Tennessee Superior Court of Law and Equity (Ely and Brown, Legal Papers of Andrew Jackson, description begins James W. Ely, Jr. and Theodore Brown, Jr., eds. Legal Papers of Andrew Jackson. Knoxville, Tenn., 1987. description ends 388–89). Tatum was recommended for territorial judge by Timothy Bloodworth (see Bloodworth to GW, 5 June 1790) and John B. Ashe (see Ashe to GW, 5 June 1790) but did not receive the appointment. Tatum was later suggested as a candidate for federal district judge for Tennessee (see Andrew Jackson to GW, 8 Feb. 1797, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters) but received no appointment from GW.