George Washington Papers

Memorandum of Thomas Jefferson, 22 December 1791

Memorandum of Thomas Jefferson

[Philadelphia] Dec. 22. 1791.

Note on the subject of vacant Consulships.

Lisbon. Candidates. Edward Church. his case is known to the President. John Telles of Philadelphia. his papers inclosed. Samuel Harrison. see Colo. Humphrey’s letter to the President. John Cowper. (Virginia) recommended by Josiah Parker.1

Cadiz. [ ] the former candidates not approved, & no new offer. it is very desireable we should have a consul there. should mister Church not be appointed to Lisbon, he would be proper for Cadiz. there are good perquisites to the former; but I do not know that there are any to the latter.2

Bristol. [ ] Elias Vanderhorst of So. Carolina, recommended by Majr Butler. it is a port where we have a good deal of commerce, and as this is the first application for a Consulship for a Carolinian, & Vanderhorst is highly spoken of, I am of opinion it is expedient to nominate him.3

When the President shall be pleased to fix on the persons for the above ports, a nomination shall be prepared with a description of their districts.

Th: Jefferson

ADS, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters; ADS (letterpress copy), DLC: Thomas Jefferson Papers; LB, DLC:GW.

1GW had asked Jefferson to draft a message nominating Edward Church consul at Lisbon and Elias Vanderhost consul at Bristol. Jefferson completed the draft by 24 Dec. 1791, but GW delayed submitting the nominations to the Senate until 3 May 1792. The enclosed papers relating to John Telles have not been found. For Telles’s candidacy, see Jefferson to GW, 23 Feb. 1791. For Samuel Harrison’s candidacy, see David Humphreys to GW, 12 May 1791. Josiah Parker had recommended Portsmouth, Va., merchant John Cowper, Jr., for a consulship in a letter to Jefferson of 8 Aug. 1790 (Jefferson Papers description begins Julian P. Boyd et al., eds. The Papers of Thomas Jefferson. 40 vols. to date. Princeton, N.J., 1950—. description ends , 17:326).

2The consulship at Cadiz remained vacant until 20 Feb. 1793, when the Senate confirmed GW’s nomination of Joseph Yznardi (see GW to the U.S. Senate, 19 Feb. 1793).

3The Senate confirmed the appointment of Elias Vanderhorst as consul at Bristol on 4 May 1792 (Executive Journal, description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States of America: From the commencement of the First, to the termination of the Nineteenth Congress. Vol. 1. Washington, D.C., 1828. description ends 1:121–22).

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