Thomas Jefferson Papers

Notes on the Reynolds Affair, 17 December 1792

Notes on the Reynolds Affair

Dec. 17. the affair of Reynolds & his wife.—Clingham Muhlenb’s clerk.
testibus F. A. Muhl. Monroe. Venable.—also Wolcott et <forsan> Wadsworth.
known1 to J.M. E.R. Beckley & Webb.
<Reynolds was speculating agent in the speculns of Govt. arrearages. He was furnished by Duer with a list of the claims of arrearages due to the Virga. & Carola. lines & bought them up, against which the Resolns of Congress of June 4 1790 were levelled. Hamilton2 advised the President to give his negative to those resolns.>

MS (DLC); partially dated; entirely in TJ’s hand; last paragraph heavily lined out in a series of discrete cancellations by TJ at a later date and tentatively reconstructed by the Editors (see MS illustrated in Vol. 18: xxxviii); text printed literally; written on same sheet as “Anas” entries for 13 Dec. 1792, 15 and 16 Jan. 1793; recorded in SJPL under 13 Jan. 1793: “Hamilton & Mrs Reynolds.” Included in the “Anas.”

Et <Forsan>: “and <perhaps>.” J.M.: James Madison. E.R: Edmund Randolph. For the significance of TJ’s notes in the disclosure within government circles of Alexander Hamilton’s relationship with James and Maria Reynolds, and accounts of the roles of the dramatis personae mentioned in them, see the note on the first conflict in the cabinet, in Vol. 18: 611–88, esp. 649; and Syrett, Hamilton description begins Harold C. Syrett and others, eds., The Papers of Alexander Hamilton, New York, 1961–87, 27 vols. description ends , xxi, 121–44.

1Word written over an erased and illegible word.

2This word the most heavily canceled of all.

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