Thomas Jefferson Papers
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Enclosure: Thomas Jefferson’s List of Batture-Related State Department Documents, [ca. 20 March 1811]

Enclosure

List of Batture-Related State Department Documents

Papers recieved from the Secretary of State’s office and now returned

 
Derbigny’s Opinion on the case of the Batture   MS.
his Memoire. printed copy
Livingston’s Examination. MS.
Thiery’s Examen. MS.
the same. a printed copy
 
 
Papers recieved from the Secretary of State’s office, and sent to Messrs Hay & Wirt, Counsel for the def. in Livingston’s1 suit, to be used therein, & under injunctions for their return to the Secretary of State’s office.
Memoire de Moreau de Lislet. MS
Notes on the sale of the Batture by B. and J. Gravier.
Deeds of  B. Gravier to   N. Gravier.
N. Gravier to Escot
Girod
Wiltz.
  J. Gravier to P. de la Bigarre for of the Batture
for the whole Batture except 1. lot.
Piedesclaux’s affidavit.
Letter of  Govr Claiborne to the Secy of State. N.O. 1807. Sep.  3.
do to do 16.
it’s inclosures.  James Brown to Govr Claiborne. Sep. 12.
Garland to do 14.
E. Livingston to do 15.
the Govr to E. Livingston. 15 
the Gov’s speech to the people. 16.
the Atty Genl  to the Secretary of State Oct. 24.
 
Govr Claiborne to the Secy of State. the Concordia. Oct.  5.
 it’s inclosures. Gravier v. Mayor Etc of N.O. a record.
Govr Claiborne to the Secy of State N.O. Nov. 13.
Secy at War to comandg officer at N.O. 30.
Govr Claiborne to the Secy of State. N.O. 1808. Jan. 29.
 inclosures. D’Orgenoy to the Govr 27.
 copy of the injunction. 5.
Govr Claiborne to the Secretary of State Apr. 26.
The Secretary of State to Govr Claiborne 1807 Nov. 30.
(misdated 1808)2
Govr  Claiborne to the Secy of State.  1809. Jan.  2.
inclosures. the Govr to the Mayor 1808. Dec. 22.
the Mayor to Tanesse, Surveyor. 24.
Tanesse to the Mayor. 28.
the Wardens to the Govr 28.
the Mayor to the Govr 30.
the Govr to the Mayor. Nov. 17.
the Mayor to the Govr 18.
Tanesse’s survey.
Edward Livingston’s letter without date or address.
E. Livingston to the Secy of State. 1809. June 27.
The Atty Genl to the Secy of State Sep. 27.
E. Livingston to the Secy of State Oct.  5 
The Secretary of State to the Atty of the Orleans Distr. 5.
Resolns of legislature of Orleans respecting the batture.

Th: Jefferson

PoC (DLC: TJ Papers, 192:34254); entirely in TJ’s hand; undated; with PoC of covering letter subjoined.

Most of the documents listed above are described in lists of batture-related papers enclosed in Robert Smith to TJ, 4, 6 June 1810, and at Resolutions of the Orleans Territorial Legislature, [19 Jan. 1810], and William Eustis to TJ, 4 June 1810. Exceptions include: (1) notes on the sale of the batture by b. and j. gravier, which state that when Bertrand Gravier sold his front lots to his cousin Nicholas Gravier he reserved the right of digging sand out of the batture; that Nicholas retained this reserved right in the initial instruments of sale to Claude François Girod, John Escot, and Françoise Wiltz; that in postscripts he later added that the batture was sold along with the lots, with only Bertrand Gravier retaining his eligibility to take sand; that altering the reserved right in this way did not imply a sale of the batture; that it showed rather “that the purchasers of the front lots of the Suburb, acquired a right to the use of the Batture in preference to those situated behind them”; that on 20 Mar. 1804 Peter Delabigarre bought two undivided thirds of the batture from Jean Gravier for $10,000, with a warranty clause securing Delabigarre the right to this land forever; that when his suit against New Orleans began, Jean Gravier could therefore have had no claim to the whole batture; that Gravier subsequently sold even more of the batture to Delabigarre, conveying almost the entire property for $50,000; that in the bill of sale Gravier included a clause voiding the sale if he lost his suit against the corporation; and that Gravier is thus bound by the terms of sale to maintain the purchase on behalf of Delabigarre (Tr in DNA: RG 59, LCBNO; endorsed by unidentifed hands: “Remarks & Notes On the Sales made of the Batture—recommended to examination”). (2) Six deeds, the main points of which are summarized in (1) above, but which can be detailed thus: Deed 1: from Bertrand Gravier to Nicholas Gravier, 20 Mar. 1794, for sale of fifty-eight lots in New Orleans, thirteen of them fronting the Mississippi River, at a price of 6,000 pesos; this and next three deeds witnessed by Miguel Gomez, Santiago Lemaire, and Francisco de Sales Badillo, and notarized by Pierre Pedesclaux. Deed 2: from Nicholas Gravier to John Escot, 12 Apr. 1794, for sale of a lot outside the city and upriver, at a price of 350 pesos. Deed 3: from Nicholas Gravier to Claude François Girod, 12 Apr. 1794, for sale of a lot outside the city and upriver, at a price of 233 pesos. Deed 4: from Nicholas Gravier to Françoise Wiltz, free mulatta, 12 Apr. 1794, for sale of a lot outside the city in the area of the Puerta de Capitular, at a price of 350 pesos. Deed 5: from Jean Gravier to Delabigarre, drawn up on 20 Mar. 1804 and signed 27 Mar. 1804, for sale of two undivided thirds of the portion of land on the bank of the Mississippi River fronting Gravier’s plantation; noting that the sale excludes only a portion of land forming the front of Girod’s “islet” and another portion sold to Pierre Fouchet; witnessed by Eugene Dorsière and M. F. Caroline Guillotte; with notation from Pedesclaux as notary that on 27 Mar. 1804 Delabigarre presented this private deed of sale at the office of the notary public; subsequently signed by Pedesclaux, Delabigarre, Joaquin Lozano, and Jean Baptiste Ramirez. Deed 6: from Jean Gravier to Delabigarre, 14 Dec. 1806, for sale of the remainder of the batture facing the Faubourg Sainte Marie, reserving only the lot extending from Rue Girod to Rue Julie and the part of the batture granted to Fouchet; stipulating that Delabigarre is responsible for legal fees stemming from litigation concerning the batture by the municipality or city corporation or the riverside owners near Girod and Fouchet; that Delabigarre can have recourse to the seller for fees incurred only in the case of a title granted by Bertrand or Nicholas Gravier of which the seller has no previous knowledge; that Delabigarre cannot sell any portion of the batture without the consent of the seller; and that Delabigarre cannot claim damages on grounds of nonfulfillment of the deed; witnessed by Arsène Lacarrière Latour and [. . .] D’oring; mortgage certified by P. L. B. Duplessis as registered in Deed Book, A:28, 22 May 1807 (Trs in DNA: RG 59, LCBNO; with first four deeds in Spanish and last two in French; copies of first four deeds verified by Pedesclaux on 13 Dec. 1808 [Deed 1] and 15 Dec. 1808 [Deeds 2–4]). (3) Pedesclaux’s 14 Oct. 1807 affidavit, sworn in front of Paul Darcantel, justice of the peace, affirming that he had always considered the batture public property; that both individual citizens and the Cabildo had taken earth from it; that sandbanks there had been the center of military activity; that the town commandant had declared that the batture was part of the city; and that the city had posted warnings against building on the batture (Tr in DNA: RG 59, LCBNO; in French; endorsed by unidentified hand: “Peter Pedesclaux’s affidavit concerning the Batture Oct. 14th 1807”).

1Manuscript: “Livinston’s.”

2Recto ends here.

Index Entries

  • Badillo, Francisco de Sales search
  • Batture Sainte Marie, controversy over; deeds related to search
  • Batture Sainte Marie, controversy over; TJ returns documents search
  • Brown, James; and batture controversy search
  • Case laid before Counsel for their opinion on the claim to the Batture, situated in front of the Suburb St. Mary (Derbigny) search
  • Claiborne, William Charles Coles; and batture controversy search
  • Darcantel, Paul search
  • Delabigarre, Peter; and batture controversy search
  • Derbigny, Pierre (Peter) Augustin Bourguignon; Case laid before Counsel for their opinion on the claim to the Batture, situated in front of the Suburb St. Mary search
  • Derbigny, Pierre (Peter) Augustin Bourguignon; Réfutation du Mémoire en forme de consultation search
  • Dorsière, Eugene search
  • Duplessis, P. L. B. search
  • D’orgenoy, Francis Joseph Le Breton; marshal at New Orleans search
  • D’oring, Mr. search
  • Escot, John search
  • Eustis, William; and batture controversy search
  • Examen des Droits des Etats-Unis et des pretensions de Mr. Edouard Livingston sur la Batture en Face du Faubourg Ste. Marie (Thierry) search
  • Examination of the title of the United States (Livingston) search
  • Fouchet, Pierre search
  • Garland, William G.; and batture controversy search
  • Girod, Claude François; and batture controversy search
  • Gomez, Miguel search
  • Gravier, Bertrand; and batture controversy search
  • Gravier, Jean (John); and batture controversy search
  • Gravier, Nicholas search
  • Guillotte, M. F. Caroline search
  • Latour, Géraud Calixte Jean Baptiste Arsène Lacarrière; witnesses deed search
  • Lemaire, Santiago search
  • Livingston, Edward; Examination of the title of the United States search
  • Lozano, Joaquin search
  • Mather, James; and batture controversy search
  • Moreau Lislet, Louis; “Mémoire au soutien des droits des Etats-unis à la Batture du faubourg Ste Marie,” search
  • Pedesclaux, Pierre search
  • Ramirez, Jean Baptiste search
  • Réfutation du Mémoire en forme de consultation (Derbigny) search
  • Rodney, Caesar Augustus; and batture controversy search
  • Smith, Robert; secretary of state search
  • Tanesse, Jacques; and batture controversy search
  • Thierry, Jean Baptiste Simon; Examen des Droits des Etats-Unis et des pretensions de Mr. Edouard Livingston sur la Batture en Face du Faubourg Ste. Marie search
  • Wiltz, Françoise search
  • “Mémoire au soutien des droits des Etats-unis à la Batture du faubourg Ste Marie” (Moreau Lislet); TJ sends to counsel search