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Documents filtered by: Author="Madison, James" AND Period="Confederation Period"
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Your favor of the 6th. of July by some singular ill luck never found its way to my hands till yesterday evening. The only part that now needs attention is a request that I will answer the following Question “What appeared to be my idea and disposition respecting the removal of Congress—did I appear to wish to hasten it, or did I not rather show a strong disposition to procrastinate it?” If...
Mr. Hamilton , had been hitherto silent on the business before the Convention, partly from respect to others whose superior abilities age & experience rendered him unwilling to bring forward ideas dissimilar to theirs, and partly from his delicate situation with respect to his own State, to whose sentiments as expressed by his Colleagues, he could by no means accede. The crisis however which...
To the People of the State of New-York. IT may be contended perhaps, that instead of occasional appeals to the people, which are liable to the objections urged against them, periodical appeals are the proper and adequate means of preventing and correcting infractions of the Constitution . It will be attended to, that in the examination of these expedients, I confine myself to their aptitude...
To the People of the State of New-York. TO what expedient then shall we finally resort for maintaining in practice the necessary partition of power among the several departments, as laid down in the constitution? The only answer that can be given is, that as all these exterior provisions are found to be inadequate, the defect must be supplied, by so contriving the interior structure of the...
To the People of the State of New-York. FROM the more general enquiries pursued in the four last papers, I pass on to a more particular examination of the several parts of the government. I shall begin with the House of Representatives. The first view to be taken of this part of the government, relates to the qualifications of the electors and the elected. Those of the former are to be the...
To the People of the State of New-York. THE next view which I shall take of the House of Representatives, relates to the apportionment of its members to the several States, which is to be determined by the same rule with that of direct taxes. It is not contended that the number of people in each State ought not to be the standard for regulating the proportion of those who are to represent the...
To the People of the State of New-York. THE number of which the House of Representatives is to consist, forms another, and a very interesting point of view under which this branch of the federal legislature may be contemplated. Scarce any article indeed in the whole constitution seems to be rendered more worthy of attention, by the weight of character and the apparent force of argument, with...
To the People of the State of New-York. THE second charge against the House of Representatives is, that it will be too small to possess a due knowledge of the interests of its constituents. As this objection evidently proceeds from a comparison of the proposed number of representatives, with the great extent of the United States, the number of their inhabitants, and the diversity of their...
To the People of the State of New-York. THE third charge against the House of Representatives is, that it will be taken from that class of citizens which will have least sympathy with the mass of the people, and be most likely to aim at an ambitious sacrifice of the many to the aggrandizement of the few. Of all the objections which have been framed against the Fœderal Constitution, this is...
To the People of the State of New-York. THE remaining charge against the House of Representatives which I am to examine, is grounded on a supposition that the number of members will not be augmented from time to time, as the progress of population may demand. It has been admitted that this objection, if well supported, would have great weight. The following observations will shew that like...
To the People of the State of New-York. HAVING examined the constitution of the house of representatives, and answered such of the objections against it as seemed to merit notice, I enter next on the examination of the senate. The heads into which this member of the government may be considered, are—I. the qualifications of senators—II. the appointment of them by the state legislatures—III....
To the People of the State of New-York. A FIFTH desideratum illustrating the utility of a senate, is the want of a due sense of national character. Without a select and stable member of the government, the esteem of foreign powers will not only be forfeited by an unenlightened and variable policy, proceeding from the causes already mentioned; but the national councils will not possess that...
The Heat of the weather &c. has laid me up with a bilious attack; I am not able therefore to say more than a few words. No material indications have taken place since my last. The chance at present seems to be in our favor. But it is possible things may take another turn. Oswald in Phila. came here on Saturday; and has closet interviews with the leaders of the opposition. Yours affcy. ALS ,...
[ Richmond, June 13, 1788. On June 25, 1788, Hamilton wrote to Madison: “I am very sorry to find by your letter of the 13th that your prospects are so critical.” Letter not found. ]
Yours of the 8th. is just come to hand. I mentioned in my last that Oswald had been here in consultation with the Antifedl. leaders. The contents of your letter confirm the idea that a negotiation for delay is [on] foot between the opposition here & with you. We have conjectured for some days that the policy is to spin out the Session in order to receive overtures from your Convention; or if...
Our debates have advanced as far as the Judiciary Department against which a great effort is making. The appellate congnizance of fact, and an extension of the power to causes between Citizens of different States, with some lesser objections are the topics chiefly dwelt on. The retrospection to cases antecedent to the Constitution, such as British debts, and an apprehended revival of the...
The Judiciary Department has been on the anvil for several days; and I presume will still be a further subject of disquisition. The attacks on it have apparently made less impression than was feared. But they may be secretly felt by particular interests that would not make the acknowledgement, and wd. chuse to ground their vote agst. the Constitution on other motives. In the course of this...
This day put an end to the existence of our Convention. The inclosed is a copy of the Act of Ratification. It has been followed by a number of recomendatory alterations; many of them highly objectionable. One of the most so is an article prohibiting direct taxes where effectual laws shall be passed by the States for the purpose. It was impossible to prevent this error. The minority will sign...
Inclosed is the final result of our conventional deliberations. The intended address of the minority proved to be of a nature apprehended by me. It was rejected by the party themselves when proposed to them, and produced an auspicious conclusion to the business. As I shall set out in a few days for N. York, I postpone further explanations. I have this instant the communications from N....
Yours of yesterday is this instant come to hand & I have but a few minutes to answer it. I am sorry that your situation obliges you to listen to propositions of the nature you describe. My opinion is that a reservation of a right to withdraw if amendments be not decided on under the form of the Constitution within a certain time, is a conditional ratification, that it does not make N. York a...
[ Philadelphia, November 20, 1788. On November 23, 1788, Hamilton wrote to Madison : “I thank you My Dear Sir for yours of the 20th.” Letter not found. ]
The sanction given by your favor of the 12th inst. to my desire of remunerating the genius which produced Common Sense, led to a trial for the purpose. The gift first proposed was a moiety of the tract on the Eastern Shore, known by the name of “the Secretary’s land.” The easy reception it found induced the friends of the measure to add the other moity to the proposition, which would have...
Letter not found: from James Madison, 11 Dec. 1784. On 28 Dec. GW wrote to Madison : “I have been favored with your letter of the 11th.”
I was yesterday honored with your favor of the 28 Ult. accompanying the report of the Conferees &c. &c. The latter have been laid before the H. of Delegates, and a Com[mitte]e appd to report a bill & Resolutions corresponding with those of Maryland. The only danger of miscarriage arises from the impatience of the members to depart, & the bare competency of the present number. By great efforts...
I have now the pleasure of confirming the expectations hinted in my last concerning the result of the measures which have been favoured with your patronage. The Bill for opening the Potowmac has passed precisely on the model transmitted from Maryland, the last conditional clause in the latter being rendered absolute by a clause in the former which engages this State for fifty shares in the...
Letter not found: from James Madison, 20 Oct. 1785. On 29 Oct. GW wrote Madison : “Receive my thanks for your obliging favor of the 20th.”
I recd your favor of the 29th ulto on thursday. That by Col. Lee had been previously delivered. Your letter for the Assembly was laid before them yesterday. I have reason to believe that it was received with every sentiment which would correspond with yours. Nothing passed from which any conjecture could be formed as to the objects which would be most pleasing for the appropriation of the...
Your favour of the 30 Novr was received a few days ago. This would have followed much earlier the one which yours acknowledges had I not wished it to contain some final information relative to the commercial propositions. The discussion of them has consumed much time, and though the absolute necessity of some such general system prevailed over all the efforts of its adversaries in the first...
I have been here too short a time as yet to have collected fully the politics of the Session. In general appearances are favorable. On the question for a paper emission the measure was this day rejected in emphatical terms by a majority of 84 vs 17. The affair of the Missisippi is but imperfectly known. I find that its influence on the federal spirit will not be less than was apprehended. The...
I am just honoured with your favor of the 5th inst: The intelligence from Genl Knox is gloomy indeed, but is less so than the colours in which I had it thro’ another channel. If the lessons which it inculcates should not work the proper impressions on the American Public, it will be a proof that our case is desperate. Judging from the present temper and apparent views of our Assembly, I have...