George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Edmund Randolph, 11 January 1794

From Edmund Randolph

Philadelphia January 11. 1794


Mr Jefferson has noted among the papers, which accompany the Algerine communications, that “there is no fund, out of which the hire of the Swedish vessel can be paid.” 1 I beg leave therefore to submit, to your consideration, Whether you will order payment of Mr Church’s bill, to the amount of one hundred and fifty pounds sterling, out of the contingent fund in your disposal.2 I have the honor, sir, to be with the greatest respect yr mo. ob. serv.

Edm: Randolph

ALS, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters; LB, DLC:GW; LB, DNA: RG 59, GW’s Correspondence with His Secretaries of State; LB, DNA: RG 59, Domestic Letters.

1Randolph is referring to Thomas Jefferson’s report of 14 Dec. 1793 on U.S. relations with Morocco and Algiers. This report and its accompanying papers were enclosed in GW’s letter to the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives of 16 Dec. 1793. Near the end of this report, Jefferson wrote that the U.S. consul at Lisbon, Edward Church, “have thought instantaneous warning to our commerce to be on it’s guard, of sufficient importance to justify the hiring a Swedish vessel to come here express with the intelligence,” and noted the lack of funds to pay for such a ship. For Church’s hiring of the Swedish snow Maria, see his letter to Jefferson of 12 Oct. 1793 (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 , 27:230–35; see also JPP description begins Dorothy Twohig, ed. The Journal of the Proceedings of the President, 1793–1797. Charlottesville, Va., 1981. description ends , 266). For the payment of this expense, despite Jefferson’s misgivings, see Alexander Hamilton to John Lamb, 16 Dec. 1793 (Hamilton Papers description begins Harold C. Syrett et al., eds. The Papers of Alexander Hamilton. 27 vols. New York, 1961–87. description ends , 15:460).

2Bartholomew Dandridge, Jr., wrote Randolph later this same date: “By the President’s direction B. Dandridge has the honor to inform the Secry of State that the President thinks some arrangemt for the paymt of Mr Church’s draft was made between Mr Jefferson & the Secy of the Treasury. If upon enquiry this should not have been the case, the President will direct it to be paid out of the Contgt Fund” (DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters). For the payment on 11 Feb. 1794, out of the contingency funds, of Church’s draft for £150 sterling, see Hamilton Papers description begins Harold C. Syrett et al., eds. The Papers of Alexander Hamilton. 27 vols. New York, 1961–87. description ends , 16:452. On the creation of a contingency fund for use by the president, see section 3 of “An Act making appropriations for the support of government for the year one thousand seven hundred and ninety,” 26 March 1790 (Stat description begins Richard Peters, ed. The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America, from the Organization of the Government in 1789, to March 3, 1845 . . .. 8 vols. Boston, 1845-67. description ends . 1:105).

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