James Madison Papers
Documents filtered by: Recipient="Harrison, Benjamin" AND Period="Revolutionary War"
sorted by: date (descending)

Virginia Delegates to Benjamin Harrison, [26] July 1783

Virginia Delegates to Benjamin Harrison

Printed copy (Burnett, Letters description begins Edmund C. Burnett, ed., Letters of Members of the Continental Congress (8 vols.; Washington, 1921–36). description ends , VII, 238–39). In or shortly before 1934, Stan. V. Henkels of Philadelphia had possession of the original of this letter (ibid., VII, 238, n. 1). For the date of 27 July as printed in Burnett, Letters description begins Edmund C. Burnett, ed., Letters of Members of the Continental Congress (8 vols.; Washington, 1921–36). description ends , see n. 1, below. See also Delegates to Harrison, 24 June 1783, ed. n.

Princeton July [26] 27th,1 1783

Sir,

We have before us, the two letters with which your Excellency honored us the 4th and 12th of this month.2 Their enclosures have been laid before Congress, and are referrd for reports.3

We shall make due enquiry after Cap’n Camm; and endeavor to retreive the effects he carried off.4 We have the pleasure to inform your Excellency, that intelligence has been receivd of the arrival of the Definitive treaty at N. York. But Congress have receivd no Advices of it from their Ministers in Europe.5

We do not know any colour of reason for the report you mention relative to our Commander in Chief. On the contrary we believe, that his popularity, like his merit, has not suffered the smallest diminution.6

We have the honor to be with the greatest respect Yr. Excellencys most obedt. Servts.

Theo’k Bland Jr.

Arthur Lee

P.S. Congress has this moment recevd, from Sir Guy Carleton, information, that several persons have been taken up in New York on suspicion of forging the Notes issued by the Superintendant of Finance. It appears from their examinations that this nefarious practice has been carried on to great extent in that City. His Letter dated the 23d makes no mention of the Definitive treaty.7

A. L.

1Arthur Lee’s mention in the postscript (q.v., and n. 7) of Congress’ receipt of Carleton’s dispatch makes certain that this letter was written on 26 rather than 27 July. In his letter to the delegates on 9 August (q.v.), Harrison acknowledged the receipt of their letter of 26 July.

2Qq.v.

3Harrison to Delegates, 4 July, and nn. 4, 6–8; 12 July, and n. 3. With the present letter the delegates enclosed copies of Philadelphia newspapers—probably the 26 July issues of the Pennsylvania Packet and of the Pennsylvania Journal (Harrison to Delegates, 9 Aug. 1783).

5JM to Jefferson, 17 July, and n. 2. For the origin of this false rumor about the definitive treaty, see JM to Randolph, 28 July, and n. 12; Delegates to Harrison, 1 Aug. 1783.

7In a letter of 24 (not 23) July, delivered by courier to President Elias Boudinot on 26 July and referred by Congress to a committee on that day, General Sir Guy Carleton requested that Congress speedily “appoint persons of their confidence to be present at a Board I mean to constitute to prosecute the inquiries” in New York City concerning “several” alleged “Counterfeiters or passers of certain Notes, commonly called Morris’s Notes” (NA: PCC, No. 52, fols. 2–4; No. 185, III, 73; No. 186, fol. 115; Pa. Packet, 17 July 1783; Cal. of Va. State Papers description begins William P. Palmer et al., eds., Calendar of Virginia State Papers and Other Manuscripts (11 vols.; Richmond, 1875–93). description ends , III, 512; Hugh Hastings and J. A. Holden, eds., Public Papers of George Clinton, VIII, 217–19). The report of the committee drafted by James Duane, chairman, was submitted to Congress on 30 July and, after minor amendment, adopted on 1 August.

The report recommended that Carleton be informed of Congress’ “entire confidence” in his intention to bring “to condign punishment” as many of the “atrocious offenders” as were “not amenable to any of these United States” and to deliver to “a guard” all others who were citizens of any American state. The committee further recommended that “the names and places of abode” of the American culprits “be transmitted to the executives of the States to which they respectively belong” (JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds., Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789 (34 vols.; Washington, 1904–37). description ends , XXIV, 485–86, 486, n. 1; Burnett, Letters description begins Edmund C. Burnett, ed., Letters of Members of the Continental Congress (8 vols.; Washington, 1921–36). description ends , VII, 245, 250). With his letters of 13 August and 1 September 1783, Carleton sent Congress copies of many affidavits and of the proceedings of general courts-martial resulting in the acquittal of all persons brought to trial except one British subject and one American citizen (NA: PCC, No. 52, fols. 5–153; JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds., Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789 (34 vols.; Washington, 1904–37). description ends , XXIV, 509, n. 1; XXV, 533, n. 1; JM to Pendleton, 8 Sept. 1783).

Index Entries