James Madison Papers
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From James Madison to Congress, 17 January 1812 (Abstract)

§ To Congress

17 January 1812. Transmits a letter from the envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary of Great Britain to the secretary of state, with the answer of the latter.1

RC and enclosures (DNA: RG 233, President’s Messages, 12A-D1); RC (DNA: RG 46, Legislative Proceedings, 12A-E2). Each RC 1 p.; in the hand of Edward Coles, signed by JM. For enclosures (3 pp.; printed in ASP description begins American State Papers: Documents, Legislative and Executive, of the Congress of the United States … (38 vols.; Washington, 1832–61). description ends , Foreign Relations, 3:453–54), see n. 1.

1JM enclosed a 28 Dec. 1811 letter from Foster to Monroe, in which the former drew the attention of the secretary of state to the fact that John Philip Morier had been authorized by Sir James Craig, governor general of Lower Canada, to inform the Madison administration that British authorities in Canada, far from encouraging Indian tribes to attack the U.S., were actually trying to restrain them. Foster further claimed that Morier had verbally informed Robert Smith of this fact, which, in an allusion to the recent Battle of Tippecanoe, he then adduced as evidence that British officials had even tried “to aid in preventing the calamity which has taken place.” Such proof of a “friendly disposition” toward the U.S., Foster added, stood “clearly in contradiction to the late unfounded reports which have been spread of a contrary nature.” In acknowledging Foster’s letter on 9 Jan. 1812 Monroe merely remarked that “if the Indians derived encouragement from any persons in those measures of hostility, it is very satisfactory to the President to receive from you an assurance that no authority or countenance was given to them by the British Government.”

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