James Madison Papers
Documents filtered by: Date="1783-06-17"
sorted by: relevance

Notes on Debates, 17 June 1783

Notes on Debates

MS (LC: Madison Papers). For a description of the manuscript of Notes on Debates, see Papers of Madison description begins William T. Hutchinson, William M. E. Rachal, et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison (7 vols. to date; Chicago, 1962——). description ends , V, 231–34.

The day was employed chiefly in considering the Report on the Journal relative to the Department of Finance.1 Some thought it ought to lie on the files: some that it ought to receive a vote of approbation, and that the Superintendant, should, for the period examined, be acquitted of further responsibility.2 Mr. Gorham particularly was of that opinion. Finally the Report was entered on the Journal without any act of Congress thereon, by a unanimous concurrence.3

1The “Report,” in the hand of Thomas FitzSimons, had been rendered on 10 June on behalf of a committee, Nathaniel Gorham, chairman, appointed on 6 January and renewed on 31 March 1783, “to enquire fully into the proceedings of the Department of Finance, including the several branches of the same, and report the result of their enquiry.” The appointment of the committee with this directive was in pursuance of a resolution written by JM and adopted by Congress on 17 June 1782 (JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds., Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789 (34 vols.; Washington, 1904–37). description ends , XXII, 334; XXIV, 37, and n. 2, 222, and n. 2, 387, 396–99, 399, n. 1; Papers of Madison description begins William T. Hutchinson, William M. E. Rachal, et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison (7 vols. to date; Chicago, 1962——). description ends , IV, 343–44).

2The “period examined” was from 14 May 1781, when Robert Morris signified to Congress his willingness to accept appointment as superintendent of finance, to 1 January 1783 (ibid., III, 137, n. 4; JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds., Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789 (34 vols.; Washington, 1904–37). description ends , XXIV, 398). The number of states effectively represented in Congress on 17 June is unknown, but there were seven on 20 June. If a motion to thank Morris for his services had been introduced on that day, it probably would have been adopted by a vote of five to two. See Papers of Madison description begins William T. Hutchinson, William M. E. Rachal, et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison (7 vols. to date; Chicago, 1962——). description ends , VI, 304–5; 305, n. 4; 306, n. 6; 347, n. 4; 409, n. 1; JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds., Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789 (34 vols.; Washington, 1904–37). description ends , XXIV, 407; Burnett, Letters description begins Edmund C. Burnett, ed., Letters of Members of the Continental Congress (8 vols.; Washington, 1921–36). description ends , VII, 184, and n. 5.

3JCC description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds., Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789 (34 vols.; Washington, 1904–37). description ends , XXIV, 396–99.

Index Entries