Thomas Jefferson Papers
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David Bailie Warden to Thomas Jefferson, 1 November 1812

From David Bailie Warden

Paris, 1 november, 1812

Dear Sir,

I regret that I have not had the honor of receiving a line from you since my return to Paris, during which interval1 I have written to you at four different times—my first, of the 10th December, 1811, was accompanied with a MS. from Senator Tracy, who is anxious to know whether you received it—It was forwarded, with Mr. Barlows’ dispatches, under cover to the President of the United States—the Senator is much pleased with the Commentary on Montesquieu—I lent my copy to Mr. marbois, who also speaks of it in the highest terms; and I heard him observe, that you must be the author— I lent mine to Dupont De Nemours who is translating it into french — I forwarded to you, by the same channel of conveyance, a copy of Peuchets Statistique; and one of the atlas of Le Sage, for Mrs Randolph —also a packet from Madame De Tessy, under cover to the President— By the Hornet, I forwarded Toulongeons’ Work, some brochures, and a Box of garden-seeds, from the Garden of Plants—By Dr. Barraud, the voyage of Rochon, from himself.

Mr. Barlow is gone to the head-quarters of the Emperor, at his request, and for the purpose of negotiation—The quantum of property is the great difficulty, which I hope will be overcome. Objections are made not only to all vessels, with forged papers, under the English flag, or English convoy, but to those condemned, by the council of Prizes, as the property of the enemy.— I inclose a copy of my Circular, which shews the extent of my privileges as Prize-agent—Since the declaration of War, I have occupied my leisure hours, in writing a narrative of the origin, progress, and influence of Consulates for the protection of Commerce, which may be of some use to the Government—I have sought in vain for your observations on the Consular Convention between France, and the United States.

The inglorious surrender of Gen. Hull is, here, attributed to treachery—Perhaps, it will be of use in stimulating citizens to exertions, which, otherwise, they would have been unwilling to make. I have, this day, received a letter, from Boston, from a gentleman, whom you know, who informs me, that all the federalists unite in their opposition to the reelection of the President, which fortunately they cannot prevent—virginian Influence is their political watch-word2—I pray you, dear Sir, to present my respects to Mr. & Mrs. Randolph, and to accept those of your ever obliged Servant

D B. Warden

RC (DLC); between dateline and salutation: “Thomas Jefferson Esquire”; endorsed by TJ as received 14 Sept. 1813 and so recorded in SJL. FC (MdHi: Warden Letterbook); in Warden’s hand; lacks closing. SJL also records the prior arrival on 22 Jan. 1813 from Paris of a Dupl, not found, which was enclosed in a brief covering letter from John Graham to TJ, Washington, 17 Jan. 1813, stating that the letter had been “received this Morning under cover from Mr Warden at Paris” (RC in DLC; endorsed by TJ as received 22 Jan. 1813 and so recorded in SJL).

Warden’s enclosed 1 Aug. 1812 circular “To the Consuls, and vice Consuls of the United States of America, residing in Ports of France, or in those over which her Imperial Prize-court has jurisdiction” states that the president has added to Warden’s consular duties that of “Agent of American Prize-causes, at Paris” and instructed him to aid American citizens when their cases are considered in government bureaus, especially the imperial prize court and the council of state; ordered him to “detect and expose every species of fraud,” violations of the law of nations and the American flag, and voluntary neglect or sacrifice of the “property, rights, and interests of american shippers, merchants, and insurers”; and requested him to inform the executive of the “arrestation, detention, or release of american seamen, and of vessels and cargoes” in France and countries under its regulation and jurisdiction; that Warden accordingly requests consuls to inform captains, supercargos, and agents of detained American vessels of his public duty and great desire to aid and advise claimants and protect their interests; that “the procuration of the captain, or consignee, or attorney in fact” will enable him to perform everything required to prosecute a claim, and that this document will be canceled when the case is adjudged; that his services are offered without commission or compensation; and that consuls should advise him of every case of capture and sequestration, acknowledge receipt of this circular, and communicate its contents to commercial and banking houses that do business with the United States (printed copies in DLC: TJ Papers and in MdHi: Warden Letterbook, both signed by Warden; at head of text: “American Consulate, and agency of Prize causes, at Paris,—Rue de Condé, no 14, faub. St.-Germain. 1 August, 1812”). In his letterbook Warden includes TJ and John Graham on a list of those to whom he sent the circular.

The following year Warden published his narrative, On the Origin, Nature, Progress and Influence of Consular Establishments (Paris, 1813; Poor, Jefferson’s Library description begins Nathaniel P. Poor, Catalogue. President Jefferson’s Library [1829] description ends , 12 [no. 712]), pp. 152–5 of which contained extracts from the consular convention signed by TJ and Montmorin on 14 Nov. 1788 and intended “to define and establish in a reciprocal and permanent manner the functions and privileges of the Consuls and vice-Consuls” of the two nations (PTJ description begins Julian P. Boyd, Charles T. Cullen, John Catanzariti, Barbara B. Oberg, and others, eds., The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1950– , 34 vols. description ends , 14:66–180, esp. 172).

1Word interlined.

2FC ends here.

Index Entries

  • Barbé Marbois, François de, marquis de search
  • Barlow, Joel; and treaty negotiations in Paris search
  • Barlow, Joel; U.S. minister to France search
  • Barraud, John Taylor; forwards books for D. B. Warden search
  • Commentary and Review of Montesquieu’s Spirit of Laws (Destutt de Tracy); and P. S. Du Pont de Nemours search
  • Commentary and Review of Montesquieu’s Spirit of Laws (Destutt de Tracy); manuscript of, sent to TJ search
  • Destutt de Tracy, Antoine Louis Claude; Commentary and Review of Montesquieu’s Spirit of Laws search
  • Destutt de Tracy, Antoine Louis Claude; Élémens d’Idéologie search
  • Du Pont de Nemours, Pierre Samuel; and Destutt de Tracy’s commentary on Montesquieu search
  • Élémens d’Idéologie (Destutt de Tracy) search
  • France; and consular convention of1788 search
  • Genealogical, chronological, historical, and geographical atlas (Las Cases) search
  • Histoire de France (F. E. Toulongeon) search
  • Hull, William; and surrender of Northwest Army search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Public Service; as minister to France search
  • Las Cases, Emmanuel Auguste Dieudonné Marin Joseph, comte de (A. Le Sage); Genealogical, chronological, historical, and geographical atlas search
  • Las Cases, Emmanuel Auguste Dieudonné Marin Joseph, comte de (A. Le Sage); work of sent to M. J. Randolph search
  • Montmorin de Saint-Herem, Armand Marc, comte de search
  • On the Origin, Nature, Progress and Influence of Consular Establishments (D. B. Warden) search
  • Peuchet, Jacques; Statistique élémentaire de la France search
  • Randolph, Martha Jefferson (Patsy; TJ’s daughter; Thomas Mann Randolph’s wife); books sent to search
  • Rochon, Alexis Marie; Voyages aux Indes Orientales et en Afrique, pour l’Observation des Longitudes en Mer search
  • Statistique élémentaire de la France (J. Peuchet) search
  • Tessé, Adrienne Catherine de Noailles de; J. Madison forwards letter from search
  • Toulongeon, François Emmanuel, vicomte de; Histoire de France search
  • Voyages aux Indes Orientales et en Afrique, pour l’Observation des Longitudes en Mer (A. M. Rochon) search
  • Warden, David Bailie; and consular circular search
  • Warden, David Bailie; letters from search
  • Warden, David Bailie; On the Origin, Nature, Progress and Influence of Consular Establishments search
  • Warden, David Bailie; sends books search
  • Warden, David Bailie; sends greetings to Randolphs search