Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to George Washington, 25 February 1793

To George Washington

Feb. 25. 93.

  • Th: Jefferson, with his respects to the President has the honor to inclose him
  • 1. letters from Mr. Barclay.
  • 2. a letter from the Govr. of N. York and an act of that legislature ceding certain lands on Montack point.
  • 3. Dr. Smith’s letter, against whom one of the Indians, in a peice read today, has entered a Caveat under the description of a Landmonger.

RC (DNA: RG 59, MLR); endorsed by Tobias Lear. Tr (Lb in same, SDC). Not recorded in SJL. Enclosures: (1) Thomas Barclay to TJ, 17, 19, 27 Dec. 1792, 2 Jan. 1793. (2) George Clinton to TJ, New York, 21 Feb. 1793, enclosing “an Exemplification of an Act of the Legislature of this State, ceding the Jurisdiction of certain Lands on Montaack Point to the United States of America for the purposes in the said Act mentioned” (Tr in Lb in DNA: RG 46, Senate Records, TR; recorded in SJL as received 25 Feb. 1793). (3) Exemplification of New York’s act of cession, 18 Dec. 1792, signed by Clinton on 21 Feb. 1793 and countersigned by Lewis A. Scott on 22 Feb. 1793 (Tr in Lb in same, certified as a true copy by TJ on 27 Feb. 1793; MS, owned by Forest Sweet, Battle Creek, Michigan, 1958, consisting solely of certification in TJ’s hand). (4) William Smith to Washington, Philadelphia, 25 Feb. 1793, praising effusively Washington’s efforts to promote peace with the Western tribes and requesting an appointment as commissioner or secretary to the forthcoming peace conference with them (DNA: RG 59, MLR).


Washington submitted a copy of the New York ACT with TJ’s certification to Congress on 27 Feb. 1793 (for a description of the statute and its constitutional implications, see Washington, Journal description begins Dorothy Twohig, ed., The Journal of the Proceedings of the President, 1793–1797, Charlottesville, 1981 description ends , 70, 72n). William Smith, an Anglican clergyman who was the first provost of the College of Philadelphia, was currently involved in land speculation and the development of canals in Pennsylvania (DAB description begins Allen Johnson and Dumas Malone, eds., Dictionary of American Biography, New York, 1928–36, 20 vols. description ends ).

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