Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to Boonen Graves & William Crafts, 8 April 1790

To Boonen Graves & William Crafts

New York April 8. 1790.


I received on my arrival here a fortnight ago your favor of Jan. 28. I had then with me all the bonds I had received in consequence of the authority delegated to me by the state of South Carolina on that subject, and have since delivered them to Messrs. Izard and Butler the Senators of the state, whose receipt I have in these words. ‘New York March 23. 1790. Received on behalf of the State of South Carolina from Thomas Jefferson 150. obligations signed by Alexander Gillon and delivered to the said Thos. by Messrs. Nicholas & Jacob Van Staphorsts of Amsterdam by order of the Governor of the said state, the said obligations being distinguished by numbers from 1. to 150. inclusive. Ra. Izard. P. Butler.’ I have the honor to be Gentlemen Your most obedient humble servt,

Th: Jefferson

PrC (DLC). Enclosure: TJ to the governor of South Carolina, 8 Apr. 1790, giving the following assurance: “The bonds committed to me for your state by the Van Staphorsts having, while in my possession, narrowly escaped being lost, once by water, and again by fire, I was impatient to place them out of any risk with which I should be connected. Immediately on my arrival here therefore, I delivered them to Mr. Izard and Mr. Butler, whom I considered as the representatives of your legislature, and therefore the most proper depositories of those papers, and have their receipt for them” (PrC in DLC). This assurance was requested by Graves & Crafts in their letter to TJ of 28 Jan. 1790, in which they stated that they had been appointed by N. & J. van Staphorst as attorneys to accede to the terms proposed by South Carolina in their ordinance of Mch. 1790 in lieu of a bond given by Commodore Gillon; that they had received from the Amsterdam firm TJ’s receipt for the bond together with other relevant papers; that they had presented these to the treasurers of the state who had refused to grant the certificate of indebtedness “because as they say they have no official information from you of your being in possession of the bond, and although we have by the assistance of some of your friends here prov’d the hand writing as far as was possible, yet they stand in need of a letter from you on the subject” and that, this being the case “and the delay being highly injurious” to their friends in Amsterdam, they ask TJ to send the necessary assurance to the governor of the state (RC in DLC; endorsed as received 23 Mch. 1790 and so recorded in SJL).

The reciept from Izard and Butler, in TJ’s hand except for the signatures and agreeing substantially but not literally with the text quoted above, is in DLC: TJ Papers, 54: 9130.

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