Thomas Jefferson Papers

Notes on a Conversation with Pierce Butler, [May 1801 or October 1801]

Notes on a Conversation with Pierce Butler

[May or October 1801]

ex. relat. P.B.

Doyley a republican from selfish & interested principles. not as competent as Simmonds.

Simmonds an excellent officer, much afraid of being removed.

Darrell, a furious republican, & has become a sacrifice to it. he offended the British merchts by his zeal & they lock their business from him as a lawyer so as to distress him.

Goodwyn, a lawyer, English man, came here since the war. a good man & will be a fitter marshal than the actual one.

the printing the laws shd. be restored to the same paper from which Pickering took it. it is under a different firm.

MS (DNA: RG 59, LAR, 3:0375); undated; entirely in TJ’s hand on scrap of paper.

Pierce Butler stopped in Washington in May and again in October 1801 and probably conversed with TJ both times. At TJ’s behest Butler also provided assessments of South Carolina political leaders in his letters (TJ to Butler, 26 Aug. 1801; Butler to TJ, 3, 19 Sep. 1801).

Sometime prior to his dismissal from office in May 1800, Timothy Pickering informed Charleston editors Peter Freneau and Seth Paine, publishers of the City Gazette and Daily Advertiser, that they would no longer be printing the laws of the United States for South Carolina. Laws enacted by the Sixth Congress instead appeared in the South-Carolina State Gazette, and Timothy’s Daily Advertiser, published by Benjamin Franklin Timothy (City Gazette and Daily Advertiser, 25 Mch. 1799, 24 Mch. 1800; South-Carolina State Gazette, and Timothy’s Daily Advertiser, 10 Mch. 1800). Butler described Timothy as “a bad young man” and Charles Pinckney described his paper as “one of the most high toned & abusive federal Papers in the Union—one supported almost entirely by the British Interest here & which still continues it’s abuse” (Madison, Papers, Sec. of State Ser. description begins J. C. A. Stagg, ed., The Papers of James Madison, Secretary of State Series, Charlottesville, 1986–, 8 vols. description ends , 1:229–30; 2:181–2). A different firm: John McIver and David R. Williams replaced Freneau and Paine as publishers of the City Gazette and Daily Advertiser on 1 Jan. 1801 (Brigham, American Newspapers description begins Clarence S. Brigham, History and Bibliography of American Newspapers, 1690–1820, Worcester, Mass., 1947, 2 vols. description ends , 2:1026).

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