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To George Washington from Edmund Randolph, 24 July 1795

From Edmund Randolph

Department of State July 24. 1795.


After a very mature consideration, we are unanimously of opinion, that an answer be returned to the papers, inclosed in the letter, which you honored me with from Baltimore on the 18th instant. At first, the sentiments contained in the sketch (No. 1.) seemed to prevail wi⟨th⟩ a majority.1 But the prospect of more and more popular meetings has converted us all to the idea, that an answer may be framed, as a text, around which temperate men may rally. Mr Wolcott and Colo. Pickering have both made draughts; and each is well done upon the principle, on which each proceeds.2 But we have thought that a mixture of the two would be preferable. This morning we shall sit again upon the composition; and I shall forward it so as at least to overtake the stage at Baltimore.

I have the honor of forwarding the memorial (No. 2). and the rough of a ratification (⟨No. 3⟩).3 They indicate the sentiment only; and it is not my wish, ⟨even⟩ after you shall have perused them once, to put them out of my hands, until you shall have seen them a second time in the final dress, which I shall give them. The instructions will be transmitted, as soon as the meeting of Philadelphia on the morrow shall have exhibited a very laboured address to you, which, I am told, will contain every thing, which can be objected to the treaty.

Nothing has transpired from Europe since my last;4 not5 yet from any of the Ministers here. I have the honor to be with the highest respect Sir yr mo. ob. serv.

Edm: Randolph.

ALS, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters; LB, DNA: RG 59, GW’s Correspondence with His Secretaries of State; LB, DNA: RG 59, Domestic Letters. The letters in angle brackets are taken from the Correspondence letter-book copy.

1The paper Randolph listed as number 1 has not been identified.

2Secretary of War Timothy Pickering wrote two drafts (see MHi: Pickering Papers). The draft by Treasury Secretary Oliver Wolcott, Jr., has not been identified.

3For the memorial to British minister George Hammond, see Randolph to GW, 20 July, n.4. The rough drafts of the statement of ratification (number 3) have not been found.

4Randolph referred to his letter to GW of 21 July.

5Both letter-book copies read “nor” for this word.

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