Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Albert Gallatin, 7 December 1801

From Albert Gallatin

Decem. 7th. 1801

Dear Sir

I have not been at the office these three days, having found that I would be less interrupted here than there in finishing & correcting statements &a.—Mr. Jones writes me that you had requested by your Secretary to be furnished this forenoon with copies of the papers preparing to be submitted to Congress.

Exclusively of five distinct reports on tonnage, exports, and importations which by sundry resolutions are to be laid before Congress during the session, and which (all the returns not being yet received,) cannot be transmitted till sometime in January, there are three reports intended to be made at the commencement of the session vizt. 1st Estimate of appropriations for next year including summary statement of expenditures of last year—This after having received sundry corrections & alterations is now in the hand of the Register, by whom it must be signed, and who has promised it for Wednesday. To have it transcribed in full would delay its transmission at least two days. It is in fact a mere form, and the alterations I have made are only in the arrangement and not in the sums. For that estimate is always compiled from those sent by the other Departments. I think that if it is sent to you, before it goes to Congress, it will answer every end—

2d. Receipts & Expenditures of 1800—This is printed, one table excepted, which is now printing. I write to the Register to send you a copy—This is only an abstract from the register’s books, and as it relates to last year—I only transmit it without any alteration from the usual form. The Register has promised it for Thursday

3d. My own report under the law of 1800—In this I have been obliged to do so much of the clerks work & correct so many details, that the tables in relation to it are not yet transcribed. This report with all its tables, is intended of course, to be submitted to you before it is transmitted to Congress. And that will not be before Monday next. For the report of the Commissr. of the revenue was not transmitted till Saturday and I could not prepare that part which relates to the internal revenues without it. He had indeed offered to make his report earlier; but I wanted it as complete as possible, and by waiting till Saturday we obtained the actual returns from Kentucky, which, before, we had only an estimate—I must add that as the two other reports go this week [and] I do not wish them to be blended with [my report] I had concluded all along not to transmit this last till the second week of the session—

With sincere respect Your most obt. Servt

Albert Gallatin

RC (DLC); torn at seal; addressed: “The President of the United States”; endorsed by TJ as received from the Treasury Department on 7 Dec. and “documents for Congress” and so recorded in SJL.

On 14 Dec., the House of Representatives received the estimate of appropriations for 1802 and the summary statement of expenditures for 1 Oct. 1800 to 30 Sep. 1801 from the Treasury Department and referred it to the Committee of Ways and Means the same day. Joseph Nourse, the register of the Treasury, signed the documents on Saturday, 11 Dec. (MS in DNA: RG 233, RCSH, 7th Cong., 1st sess.). Gallatin wrote the transmittal letter to the speaker of the House the next day (RC in same; in a clerk’s hand, signed by Gallatin). The documents, printed by an order of the House, became a 91-page pamphlet entitled Letter and Report from the Secretary of the Treasury, Accompanied with Estimates of the Sums Necessary to be Appropriated for the Service of the Year One Thousand Eight Hundred and Two; Also, A Statement of the Receipts and Expenditures at the Treasury of the United States, for One Year, Preceding the first day of October, one thousand eight hundred and one (Washington, D.C., 1801; see Shaw-Shoemaker description begins Ralph R. Shaw and Richard H. Shoemaker, comps., American Bibliography: A Preliminary Checklist for 1801–1819, New York, 1958–63, 22 vols. description ends , No. 1493). Gallatin recommended appropriations of $564,235 for the civil list; $283,564.26 for miscellaneous expenses, including $93,000 for military pensions and almost $45,000 for lighthouses “and other establishments for the security of navigation”; $132,116.67 for intercourse with foreign nations; $1,366,840.68 for the War Department, including $60,750 for Indian affairs; and $1,101,390.57 for the Navy; for a total appropriation of $3,448,147.18 (same, 5–7).

Send you a copy: on 8 Dec., Nourse wrote TJ from the Register’s Office, indicating that at Gallatin’s suggestion he was sending a copy of the receipts and expenditures for 1800 (RC in DLC; in a clerk’s hand, signed by Nourse; at foot of text: “The President of the United States”; endorsed by TJ as received from the Treasury Department on 8 Dec. and “Receipts & Expenditures” and so recorded in SJL). In that letter, Nourse may have enclosed a copy of his letter to Gallatin of the same date, transmitting the same account to the Treasury secretary and explaining that “The tables in relation to the Imports & Tonnage, and of the internal revenues for the year 1800 are in a course of preparation. Only a sufficient number for the immediate use of the Legislature have been prepared in the present form, the residuary copies with the tables will be transmitted as early as possible” (Tr in same; in a clerk’s hand, signed by Nourse; at head of text: “Copy”). This document, presented to the House of Representatives on 9 Dec., and the transmittal letters from the Treasury secretary and Nourse have not been found (JHR description begins Journal of the House of Representatives of the United States, Washington, D.C., 1826, 9 vols. description ends , 4:12).

My own report: see Gallatin to TJ, 13 Dec.

Commissr. of the revenue: William Miller.

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