James Madison Papers
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To James Madison from Willis Alston, 2 March 1815

From Willis Alston

Representative Chamber March 2d 1815

Dr sir,

Having determined to retire after the termination of the present session, I am desirous of aiding in carrying into execution the treaty lately entered into with the creek Indians,1 should the bill now before the House be enacted into a law I will with great pleasure accept the appointment of one of the commissioners to assertain & fix the boundery,2 I think it would be pleasing to many respectable Citizens of N. Carolina to have a commissioner on this subject, My object if appointed shall be to have the business done well & speedily, on all subjects connected with surveying I have had Much experience. I am your most obt set

Willis Alston3

RC (DLC). Docketed by JM.

1For the treaty, see JM to the Senate, 18 Nov. 1814, and JM’s Presidential Proclamation, 16 Feb. 1815, PJM-PS description begins Robert A. Rutland et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison: Presidential Series (9 vols. to date; Charlottesville, Va., 1984–). description ends 8:390 and n. 2, 594–99.

2On 3 Mar. 1815 JM signed into law “An Act to provide for ascertaining and surveying of the boundary lines fixed by the treaty with the Creek Indians, and for other purposes” (U. S. Statutes at Large, 3:228–29). He nominated William Barnett, Benjamin Hawkins, and Edmund Pendleton Gaines as commissioners under the act on 8 Jan. 1816, and the Senate confirmed the appointments the following day (Senate Exec. Proceedings description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States of America (3 vols.; Washington, D.C., 1828). description ends , 3:19–21).

3Willis Alston (1769–1837), a native of Halifax County, North Carolina, attended the College of New Jersey. He served in the North Carolina house of commons, 1790–92, and the state senate, 1794–96. Elected to Congress in 1798, he held his seat until March 1815, supporting Thomas Jefferson’s and JM’s administrations; in 1804 and 1811 he was involved in physical altercations with fellow congressman John Randolph. He returned to the North Carolina house of commons, 1819–24, and to Congress, 1825–31 (Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, s. v. “Alston, Willis”).

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