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From Thomas Jefferson to Wilson Cary Nicholas, 24 April 1802

To Wilson Cary Nicholas

Apr. 24. 1802.

Th: J. to Mr. Nicholas

I am anxious to recieve the British convention, because the moment I do, I shall lay it before both houses with a message for appropriation. for altho’ the next Congress might by possibility appropriate in time to make the first paiment, yet so great a remittance if pressed in time, might be made to great disadvantage. Great Britain too may want confidence in our ratification, if the legislature remains still free to refuse an appropriation; and, tho’ in session, should actually rise without having made one. their satisfaction as well as ours, requires that no doubts or uncertainties should remain on either side: and it is moreover fair that the instrument should be tried and finally passed on, under the circumstances & considerations existing at the time, rather than on such as the events of another twelvemonth might bring into operation. I suggest these ideas to your reflection, that if approved, the advice of ratification may be expedited, and the convention laid before both houses before the appropriation time passes.

PrC (DLC).

The Senate approved RATIFICATION of the convention with Great Britain on 26 Apr. by a vote of 19 to 2, the two nay votes coming from George Logan and Thomas Sumter, Sr. (JEP description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States … to the Termination of the Nineteenth Congress, Washington, D.C., 1828, 3 vols. description ends , 1:415, 417, 418, 420–2).

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