From Albert Gallatin
Feby. 9th. 1802
From the present situation of Mr Duane’s account, as stated in the enclosed, and considering that the stamp act will most probably be repealed, leaving on our hands a large quantity of Surplus useless paper; it seems that it would be unjustifiable to extend the contract beyond the 400 thd. sheets already engaged, and that the advance which he may claim in relation to his existing contract does not amount to 500 dollars. He has delivered to the amount of 2,275 dollars & has received 3,545; so that we are still 1,270 dollars in advance to him.
How he can be relieved I know not; but you will see that the mode suggested, and which, under an impression that he had yet 2000 dollars to receive and had delivered paper to the amount heretofore advanced, had appeared eligible, is impracticable—
Respectfully Your obedt Servt.
RC (DLC); endorsed by TJ as received from the Treasury Department on 9 Feb. and “Duane” and so recorded in SJL. Enclosure: William Miller to Gallatin, Treasury Department, 8 Feb., noting that William Duane’s contract was for the delivery of 400,000 sheets of paper by 15 Nov. 1801, for which Peter Muhlenberg, according to Gallatin’s instructions, advanced him $3,000 in October; Duane still owes 172,500 sheets from that contract; Duane also gave an order in favor of William Young for payment of 54,500 sheets, making a total of $3,545 advanced to his account, leaving a balance in Duane’s favor of $455, upon delivery of all of the paper; Miller also noting that there is no need to extend Duane’s contract for there was “no immediate pressure for Supplies: the demand for paper” having “considerably abated” (RC in DLC).