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I do myself the honor to enclose you, a Letter from Mr. John Irwin of Tennessee, soliciting the exchange of Daniel Jones, an old and infirm Soldier, for a young and able Recruit. Mr. Irwin is a respectable and worthy Citizen, and from the Interest he seems to feel for Jones’s Welfare, I am sure Sir, that this Soldier is entitled to your favour and notice. On this occasion, I must be allowed an...
I have received your polite Letter of the 3rd Inst., on the subject of Daniel Jones’s exchange; it shall immediately be forwarded, to the friends of Jones, who I well know, will, remember with Gratitude, the attention you have been pleased to pay, to their Requests. I have the honor to be Sir, With Sentiments the most Respec tful Yo: Mo: Ob. hble servt. ( ALS , Hamilton Papers, Library of...
From a desire to promote the happiness of a Family, I am induced, to address to you this Letter, and doubt not, but the motive, will be deemed a sufficient Apology, for the Liberty I have taken. It has been stated by the Secretary at War, that the third Regiment of the U. States, was to be stationed in the Mississippi Territory. At this time, there is One Company of this Regiment on Command...
I have received your polite Letter of the 26th. Instant, and its Contents have — ly convinced me of the propriety of your determination, relative to the destination of Captain Sparks. I shall take the liberty Sir, to forward your Communication to Governor Sevier, who being a Military Character, must immediately see the force of your reasoning, and the great inconvenience, which partial...
By an Act of the late Congress, the District of Palmira, in this State, being discontinued, and all the Waters, Shores and Inlets lying within Tennessee, being annexed (from and after the 30th day of June next) to the District of Massac ’ on the Ohio , it has become an Object of much Importance, to the Merchants & Traders of this State, that a deserving and judicious Citizen should be...
2 August 1801, Nashville. Acknowledges receipt of JM’s letter of 10 July enclosing his commission as governor of Mississippi Territory. Requests JM to inform president that he accepts appointment. Expects to depart for Mississippi by late September or early October. Letterbook copy ( Ms-Ar : Claiborne Executive Journal). 2 pp. Printed in Rowland, Claiborne Letter Books Dunbar Rowland, ed.,...
Your friendly Letter of the 13th. of last Month, I had the honor to receive, on the 1st. Instant, accompanied with a Letter from the Secretary of State, enclosing me a Commission, as Governor of the Mississippi Territory.—I acknowledge with Gratitude, my Obligations to you, for this high proof of Confidence and Esteem, and, I trust, that every Act of my public Life, will evince my great...
16 September 1801, Knoxville. Reports that arrangements for his descent of the Mississippi are nearly completed; expects to leave the first week of October. Has received information from the Mississippi Territory that “the public Mind is tranquil,” party spirit has considerably subsided, population is increasing, and relations with the Spanish and the Indians are harmonious. Requests regular...
7 October 1801, Nashville. Plans to depart for the Mississippi Territory on 8 Oct. Reports that the territorial assembly was convened by Secretary John Steele on 20 July. It conducted little business during a five-week session and what it did remains incomplete without gubernatorial sanction. Steele is reported ill; his life is despaired of. Quotes a passage from a 3 Sept. letter received from...
I am sorry that I have remained thus long from my Post; But it really was not in my power sooner to have left Tennessee;—On tomorrow however, I shall certainly take my departure for the Missisippi Territory:—The Western Waters are uncommonly low, and I anticipate a long Voyage, but the season of the year, is favorable, and if the health of myself, and family should be preserved, my passage...
24 November 1801, Natchez. Reports his arrival on 23 Nov. after a journey made unduly difficult and dangerous by low rivers and high winds. Describes the land on the Mississippi as “pretty well adapted to Cultivation” but notes that “this extensive Country has been greatly forsaken, or rather, neglected by man,” there being only three small settlements on the Spanish side between the mouth of...
After a passage of 46 days from Nashville; I reached this Town, on the Morning of the 23rd. Instant;—during the Voyge, I experienced no misfortune; and Mrs. Claiborne ; myself; and family enjoyed good health. The Affairs of this District, are greatly confused; in a Word, Anarchy is (nearly) the order of the day:—The restoration of Good Order; and regular Government will be an arduous Work; and...
12 December 1801, Natchez. Encloses a copy of his 2 Dec. address to the territorial legislature together with their answer [of 4 Dec.]. The legislature seems to be composed of “honest men, much attached to the United States, and devoted to the Interest of this Territory,” despite their inexperience. Believes that all opposition to admitting the Mississippi Territory to the second grade of...
20 December 1801, Natchez. Has just received word that U.S. commissioners have concluded a treaty at Fort Adams with the Choctaw, who consented to a road through their lands to Tennessee; presumes construction will begin immediately. Large quantities of flour and other exports have passed by Natchez recently, demonstrating the increase of industry and wealth in the West. Mentions reports that...
8 January 1802, Natchez. Reports that “nothing very interesting” has occurred since his letter of 20 Dec. Territorial legislature transacts business slowly, but with care and prudence. “Political disquietude is nearly exiled,” and the judiciary is the sole subject of popular discontent. Regrets that territorial Supreme Court is “so deficient in Law Knowledge.” The chief justice “was...
20 January 1802, Natchez. Encloses a letter received from Mississippi attorney general Harding regarding land claims in the territory. Believes that the information contained in Harding’s letter, if true, will affect legality of the Supreme Court decision referred to in his own letter to JM of 20 Dec. Asks JM to lay enclosed letter before U.S. attorney general and to request his opinion on...
I have the honor to enclose you, an address from the House of Representatives of the Mississippi Territory, and the pleasure to add, that the Sentiments it contains, are in unison with the feelings of a great majority of the Citizens of this Territory.— I am persuaded, an opinion generally prevails in this District, that the Liberty, Peace, & safety of our Country, greatly depend upon the...
23 January 1802, Natchez. Announces arrival on 21 Jan. of Jefferson’s recent message to Congress. Prospects for unanimity in the territory are not as pleasing as he had supposed. Factions still exist, and it will take time to lay their “Evil Spirit” to rest. The territorial legislature is “amply supplied” with love of country and honest intentions, but “there is a deficiency in Legislative...
5 February 1802, Natchez. Encloses copies of his 29 Jan. letter to General Wilkinson and Wilkinson’s reply. Hopes the request he made of the general was not improper but fears the peace of the territory is precarious, “surrounded as it is, by numerous Indian Tribes, and with a Population of Negroes, nearly equal to the number of Whites, … and it seemed to me advisable, to have the Spare Arms...
16 February 1802 , “ Near Natchez .” States that he does not know whether his frequent letters to JM have been received as he has had no communications from the State Department since his arrival. Reports that an election for the territorial legislature will be held in July and the people are already agitated. “Popular favor is uncommonly fluctuating; the population of the District, is...
My appointment to this Government, (& if I am not greatly deceived, my conduct since my arrival,) has been pleasing to a great majority of the Citizens:—But from a variety of causes, some difficulties will attend me, in the progress of my administration.—Already my Predecessor has evidenced a disposition, to rekindle the flame of party, & his most zealous partisans, although few in number, are...
6 March 1802 , “ Near Natchez. ” Refers to his letter of 5 Feb. advising JM of his request to Wilkinson to construct a blockhouse at a central location to store spare arms from Fort Adams; hopes the president will approve it. Is currently occupied with the difficult task of organizing the militia. The election of members of the territorial legislature, to be held the fourth Monday in July, has...
3 April 1802 , “ Near Natchez. ” “It is confidently reported at New Orleans that East & West Florida’s are Ceded to France; I have understood, that no official information of the Cession, had reached the Governor General of Louisiana, and that he denies the truth of the report; it is nevertheless generally believed and has occasioned much anxiety & uneasiness among the Inhabitants of Orleans.”...
24 April 1802, Natchez. On 18 Apr. received JM’s letter of 22 Feb. enclosing Dr. David Lattimore’s commission as a member of the legislative council of the Mississippi Territory; Lattimore, who has accepted the appointment, “unites to pure Republicanism, handsome Talents & an Honest Heart.” The “utmost harmony” exists between Americans and Spaniards at New Orleans. Supports the president’s...
On last evening, I had the honor to receive your much esteemed favor of the 7th. Ultimo, together with its enclosures;—the Letters to the President of the Council, and Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Mississippi Territory, have been carefully delivered, and were received with great pleasure by the Gentlemen, to whom they were addressed.— The Resolutions which the Legislature...
14 May 1802 , “ Near Natchez .” “The Legislature of this Territory met in Session on the 3rd. Instant and on the day following I made to the two Houses a Communication of which the enclosed is a Copy.” The legislature adjourned 13 May after making “several very wholesome Laws, amongst which is an Act to establish a College in the Mississippi Territory.… This College shall bear the name of...
28 May 1802, Washington, Mississippi Territory. “I have the honor to enclose you, a Manuscript Copy of the Laws passed at the last Session of the Territorial Legislature; There being at present, no Secretary in the Territory, (Colo. Steele’s time of service having expired) the original Laws, are deposited with me for safe keeping. The acts passed at the Session, previous to the last, are yet...
1 June 1802, Washington, Mississippi Territory. Acknowledges receipt of JM’s letter of 9 Apr. enclosing his commission as governor of the Mississippi Territory. Letterbook copy ( Ms-Ar : Claiborne Executive Journal). 1 p. Printed in Rowland, Claiborne Letter Books Dunbar Rowland, ed., Official Letter Books of W. C. C. Claiborne, 1801–1816 (6 vols.; Jackson, Miss., 1917). , 1:116.
On last evening, I received your Letter of the 3rd of April , enclosing your Answer to an Address, from the House of Representatives of this Territory, and which , I shall, with great pleasure, forward to the Speaker of that Body.— With assurances of my highest respect;—I have the honor to subscribe myself—Your faithful friend, and most obt. Hble. Servant RC ( DLC ); in a clerk’s hand, signed...
31 [sic] June 1802 , “ Near Natchez .” Acknowledges JM’s letter of 11 May enclosing the opinion of the attorney general. Observes that the Spanish governor was “extremely liberal in his donations, after the promulgation of the treaty between the United States, and Spain. And there is no doubt but many tracts of land in this District are claimed by antidated grants; and I believe the fraud may...
19 August 1802, Natchez. “In a former letter I stated to you the want of confidence on the part of many of the Citizens of this Territory in their Supreme Judiciary; the deficiency of legal talents in two of the Judges; and the propriety there was, in supplying the first vacancy with a character of good law information. It is now reported that Judge Tilton has resigned.… But there is another...
On the 8th Instant, I had the honor to receive your Communication of the 20th of July, and on the next day, I published a hand Bill, addressed “to persons Claiming Lands within the Mississippi Territory,[”] and of which the enclosed is a Copy. In my publication, I have endeavoured to comply literally with your instructions, and I trust the Language which is used, cannot be construed “as...
29 October 1802 , “ Near Natchez .” Encloses a letter received “last evening” from Hũlings together with a translation of an extract from Morales’s 16 Oct. proclamation. “These despatches, announce ’that the Port of New Orleans, is shut against foreign commerce and the American deposit .[’] Not understanding from the Intendant’s Proclamation, whether or not, another place on the banks of the...
5 November 1802 , “ Near Natchez .” Sends such information as he has been able to collect in reply to JM’s inquiries of 26 July. In conformity with JM’s request, land claimants of the descriptions mentioned were invited by public advertisement to file “the particular Authority and extent of their respective claims, and the chain of Title derived to the present claimants from the Original...
6 November 1802 , “ Near Natchez .” “The embarrassment of our trade at N: Orleans, still continues, private letters state, that American produce may be landed by paying a duty of 6 pCent, but not otherwise.” Encloses an extract in Spanish [not found] from the intendant’s proclamation, as “the translation, which was sent you is sufficiently faithful, but does not possess the strength of the...
6 November 1802 , “ Near Natchez .” “I have this day drawn upon you, for the sum of Eighty dollars, payable at five days sight to Ferdinand L. Claiborne, merchant at Natchez, or to his order.” Explains that he paid this sum to Samuel May “for going express from Natchez to Nashville, as will appear from the vouchers enclosed” [not found]. The letters that May carried “communicated the late...
24 November 1802 , “ Near Natchez .” Encloses a duplicate [not found] of his 5 Nov. letter , having discovered an omission of a few words in the third inquiry regarding claims derived under the British and Spanish governments previous to the treaty of 1795 and unsettled at the date of the treaty. “After the word Settlement these words should have been inserted, ‘ within the ceded Territory .’”...
25 November 1802, Natchez. Encloses “an Original Copy of a Communication (together with a translation thereof)” received “this morning” from the governor general of Louisiana, in answer to Claiborne’s 28 Oct. letter. Letterbook copy and copy of enclosure ( Ms-Ar : Claiborne Executive Journal); Tr ( DNA : RG 233, President’s Messages, 7A-D1); Tr of enclosure ( DLC : Jefferson Papers)....
21 December 1802, “ Near Natchez .” The legislature met at Washington [Mississippi Territory] on 5 Dec. Encloses a copy of the address he delivered on 8 Dec. to an assembly of both houses “together with the answers returned.” David Ker received his commission “by the last mail” and has undertaken his official duties. Ker’s appointment has satisfied “ a great portion ” of the citizenry, and he...
3 January 1803, Natchez. “The enclosed hand bill [not found] has this moment reached me; it has every appearance of being an official publication.” The conduct of the Spanish government in Louisiana is “indeed extraordinary.” Recent acts manifest “determined hostility” to the U.S. “The violation of the Treaty, so far as related to the deposit at Orleans, gave rise to much agitation in this...
19 January 1803 , “ Near Natchez .” Reports that he received JM’s 29 Nov. 1802 letter with its enclosures on 10 Jan. and forwarded the letter to Hũlings by hired express. “I presume it has by this time reached him.” “At the date of the last advices from New Orleans, that post continues shut to the American deposit, and it was not understood that the Intendant was likely to revoke his decree. I...
20 January 1803 , “ Near Natchez .” Encloses “general abstracts” [not found] of a recently received return of the claims filed in Washington County. Most titles exhibited in the county “are very incomplete.” “It is not believed, that any of the citizens claiming under Spanish sales, had obtained patents previous to October 1795, but remained in possession of their lands, by virtue of an Order...
28 January 1803 , “ Near Natchez .” “The express which I despatched to New-Orleans, on the 11: instant, returned yesterday and brought me the enclosed packet, accompanied by a letter from Mr. Hulings [not found], a copy of which is herewith forwarded.” The intendant “is firm to his purposes,” and the deposit will not be restored. “The Intendant is represented to be a man of handsome talents,...
3 March 1803 , “ Near Natchez .” Has received JM’s 17 Jan. letter enclosing one from the Spanish minister to the intendant, which he forwarded to Hũlings with a copy of JM’s letter. The enclosed copy [not found] of a proclamation “lately issued at Orleans by the Intendant” will show how successful the steps taken to revoke the ban on the deposit have been. “The Port is now partially open, but...
5 March 1803 , “ Near Natchez .” Encloses a letter from Hũlings communicating the latest intelligence from New Orleans. “The Western Boats are arriving daily at Natchez; our Markets are low but there is no difficulty in exporting Produce from hence to the Atlantic States or to Europe. There are many Vessels yet lying opposite to Orleans, waiting for return cargoes, & there are several now on...
15 March 1803 , “ Near Natchez .” Has been requested to forward the enclosed petition from the Mississippi Territory House of Representatives [not found] regarding “the free Navigation of certain Navigable Rivers, ‘falling into the Bay of Mexico, from the Territories of the United States, and passing thro’ the Dominions of his Catholic Majesty’”; asks that it be laid before the president. On...
27 March 1803 , “ Near Natchez .” Acknowledges receipt of JM’s 14 Feb. letter with its enclosure on the evening of 24 Mar. Forwarded the New Orleans packet to Hũlings by express on 25 Mar. “It is reported that several french Officers have arrived at Orleans and Certain information received of the sailing of the fleet with the army for Louisiana.” He will learn if the report is true when the...
I have been honored with the receipt of your Letter of the 25th. Ultimo , together with a Report of a Committee of Congress, which accompanyed it . So far as may depend upon my Agency, no exertions shall be wanting to carry into effect in this Territory, the Militia System adopted by the National Legislature, “and in a manner the best calculated to insure such a degree of military discipline...
In my last Letter , I anticipated the resignation of Mr. Seth Lewis , the Chief Justice of this Territory;—I was yesterday informed by that Gentleman , that his resignation had actually been forwarded. If Judge Jackson of Tennessee (the Gentleman I named to you in my last Letter) should not be offer’ed the Appointment of a Judge for this Territory, or be unwilling to accept, permit me Sir, to...
The State of things in New Orleans continue in uncertainty. The Prefect is yet in that City; but not in the exercise of authority. A Vessel from Philadelphia, laden with military Stores, and destined for Fort Adams is now in the Mississippi;—It is said, the Prefect requested the Spanish Government not to permit this Vessel to pass New-Orleans, & was answered, that the free navigation of the...