James Madison Papers
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To James Madison from James Monroe, 11 August 1811

From James Monroe

Albemarle Augt. 11. 1811

Dear Sir

The incapacity for business produc’d by so long an application to it at Washington, has been increasd since my return home by a fall from my horse, being taken off by a limb of a tree under which he passed. My head, & left shoulder were bruis’d, & my leg cut a little by the stirrup, but I have almost recover’d from these injuries. I have walk’d about to day, & expect to be able to ride tomorrow.

I inclose you recommendations in favor of two persons to succeed Mr Freneau in the office of Commissr. of loans in So Carolina.1

Mr Gales has written to enquire whether the Statment in the Aurora of rudeness being offerd to me personally by Mr Foster is correct.2 It certainly is not so. But whether, since the proceeding & judgment in the admy. in the case of the Fox & other vessels, the statment ought to be contradicted or even noticd, as not heard of, is doubtful at least at this time.3 I have intimated to Mr Graham that I will answer Mr Gales (thro Mr G), in my next on the subject, suggesting a doubt as to noticing it for the reason herin stated. I shall be glad of a line from you on it in the inter[i]m. Respectfully your friend & servt

Jas Monroe

RC (DLC: Rives Collection, Madison Papers). Docketed by JM. Enclosures not found.

1JM nominated Morton A. Waring to be commissioner of loans for South Carolina on 3 Dec. 1811 (Senate Exec. Proceedings description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States of America (3 vols.; Washington, 1828). description ends , 2:194).

2On 5 Aug. 1811, William Duane, who had repeatedly declared that Foster’s mission was “only a business of amusement and procrastination,” editorialized in the Philadelphia Aurora General Advertiser that the British minister had “fallen nothing short of the insolence of one of his predecessors, in the style and part which he has assumed, and he has exceeded him in personal indecorum and even personal rudeness.” Duane further charged that Foster had resorted to “menaces” in his talks with Monroe over the Nonintercourse Act of 1811 and that the secretary of state, although responding with “dignity and temper,” had been obliged to delay his departure for Virginia by three days as a consequence.

3The Philadelphia Aurora General Advertiser also reported on 5 Aug. 1811 recent news from Great Britain to the effect that on 18 June Sir William Scott had condemned the Fox and fifty-four other American vessels under the orders in council. The Fox had sailed from Boston for Cherbourg and was captured on 15 Nov. 1810. In response to defense claims that the Berlin and Milan decrees had been repealed, Scott had ruled that there was no evidence that this was the case and that Great Britain could not accept French conditions for the repeal of the orders in council without loss of its “rights sanctioned by the acquiescence and general custom of Europe.” In communicating the news of the decision to Monroe on 7 Aug., John Graham remarked: “This looks inauspiciously, particularly when connected with the Reports that the Indians are making war on our Western Frontier, that the British are sending reinforcements to Canada, and are endeavouring to get possession of the Island of Cuba” (DLC: Monroe Papers).

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