Alexander Hamilton Papers

To Alexander Hamilton from Tobias Lear, 7 September 1791

From Tobias Lear

United States
Sept: 7, 1791

By the Presidents command T. Lear has the honor to transmit to the Secretary of the Treasury for his information a letter from Colo. Ballard,1 Inspector of the port of Baltimore, stating the trouble & expence attending the execution of the duties of his Office, for which there is no compensation.2

At the same time the President directs the enclosed letter from Genl. Lincoln3 to T. L. (which has been submitted to the president’s inspection) to be laid before the Secretary, as it points to the same subject relative to the Inspector of the port of Boston.4

Tobias Lear.
S. P. U. S.

LC, George Washington Papers, Library of Congress.

1Robert Ballard was surveyor of the port of Baltimore.

2On September 7, 1791, Lear wrote to Ballard as follows: “It is impossible for the President to attend to the minutiae of business which may be communicated by Individuals, he wishes always to receive such information as may be proper to come before him, relating to the several Departments through the heads of the Departments to which the business properly belongs. Upon this view of the matter the President is persuaded, Sir, that you will not consider his declining to reply to the subject of your letter at this time, as a singular case; for he observes the same conduct on all occasions of this nature” (GW description begins John C. Fitzpatrick, ed., The Writings of George Washington (Washington, 1931–1944). description ends , XXXI, 360, note 84).

3Benjamin Lincoln, collector of customs at Boston.

4Thomas Melville (or Melvill).

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