Alexander Hamilton Papers

To Alexander Hamilton from Tench Coxe, 20 June 1794

From Tench Coxe1

Treasury Department, Revenue Office, June 20, 1794. “A purchase of salt Petre was effected on the 13. instant at Providence at 18 Drs. per lb for a quantity amounting to about 22 Tons. This with the commission will be near 9000 Dollars. The whole is payable in 15 days from the 13th. at the bank of Providence.…”2

LC, RG 75, Letters of Tench Coxe, Commissioner of the Revenue, Relating to the Procurement of Military, Naval, and Indian Supplies. National Archives.

1For background to this letter, see Henry Knox to H, March 29, April 21, 1794; H to Coxe, April 4, 1794.

2On May 31, 1794, Coxe wrote a “secret and confidential” letter to Thomas Lloyd Halsey of Providence, which reads in part as follows: “It is understood that a vessel has arrived in your State from the East Indies with a quantity of Salt Petre.… you will proceed … to purchase the whole or any part of the said Salt Petre (if not more than two hundred tons) at any price not exceeding £8 Pennsa. money or 21⅓ Dollars per Ct. of 112 lt. It is not expected the price will be near so high.… The terms of payment will be cash to be raised, by authority to draw on Philadelphia, or New York, with what money can be spared from the public cash in the Bank of Providence, or Bank Post notes of the United States, payable in three days after date here, can be sent per first post …” (LC, RG 75, Letters of Tench Coxe, Commissioner of the Revenue, Relating to the Procurement of Military, Naval, and Indian Supplies, National Archives).

On June 21, 1794, Coxe wrote to Jeremiah Olney, collector of customs at Providence: “The Treasurer of the U: States has been instructed to transmit to Mr. Halsey 9000 Drs in bills on the bank of Providence …” (LC, RG 75, Letters of Tench Coxe, Commissioner of the Revenue, Relating to the Procurement of Military, Naval, and Indian Supplies, National Archives).

On June 20, 1794, Warrant No. 3772 was issued to Halsey for nine thousand dollars. On June 14, 1798, Halsey’s final bill for expenses amounting to $304.14 was recorded at the Treasury Department (D, RG 217, Miscellaneous Treasury Accounts, 1790–1894, Account No. 9816, National Archives).

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