From Robert Morris
Office of Finance [Philadelphia] 16. April 1783
I have been duly honored with the Receipt of your favor of the fifteenth Instant.1 I accepted the Marine Agency simply with a View to save the Expence of the Department but whenever a marine is to be established a previous Point would be (in my Opinion) to nominate a Minister of Marine and let his first Work be the forming of those Plans and Systems which when adopted by Congress he would have to execute. For my own Part were my Abilities equal to this Task my Leizure would not permit the Attempt.2
With Respect to the Finances I am of Opinion that as we cannot increase our Revenue we must do all we can to lessen our Expenditures and that therefore we should take off every Expence not absolutely necessary as soon as possible.
On the Subject of the Coin I hope soon to make a Communication to Congress which if approved of by them will compleat that Business.
I am Sir with very sincere Esteem and Respect—your most obedient and humble Servant
LC, Robert Morris Papers, Library of Congress.
1. Letter not found. See note 2.
2. An entry in Morris’s Diary for April 8 reads:
“Colo. Hamilton informed me that he is of a Committee to Consider of Peace managements and was desired by that Committee to Consult me respecting the Plan for establishing a Navy. I replyed nothing would be more agreeable to me than to Assist in that Business; but as I shall soon quit Public Office I recommended that Congress should appoint a Minister of Marine who might now form the Plans he is to execute.” (Robert Morris Papers, Library of Congress.)
H’s letter of April 15, 1783, which has not been found, probably discussed the appointment of a Minister of Marine.