Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from William Vallance, 22 March 1802

From William Vallance

Philada., 22nd March, 1802.

The Petition of William Vallance, Respectfully sheweth.

That having been in the Service of the United States, on board a Cutter in the Service of the States aforesaid, as first Mate for the space of Twenty Months, the greater part of the Time under the Command of Captn. Isaac Roach and the latter part under Captn. George Price. Had my Sentiments been uniform with Those to whom I was subordinate, no doubt I might have continued longer; but to my inexpressable satisfaction, that cause of Fear no more exists, and am therefore induced to make a Tender of my services, and solicit the command of the Revenue Cutter now building at this Port. My pretentions, Sir, rest on my ability and proficiency in that line and the recommendatory proof, which I hope, to your satisfaction, I shall be able to furnish: By serving a regular Time, I have obtained a sufficient knowledge of the Bay and River Delaware, as to entitle me to hold a first rate Branch as Pilot, and for many years have been Master of Vessels in the Mercantile Line, but at present out of employ. Should you therefore be pleased to give me the Appointed and Command of the Cutter aforesaid, be assured, Sir, that nothing on my part shall be wanting to render my Station satisfactory to You and usefull to my Country, And in gratefull remembrance by,

Sir, Your most Obedient, and very Humble Servt.

William Vallance

RC (NHi: Gallatin Papers); in an unknown hand, signed by Vallance; at head of text: “To Thomas Jefferson Esqr., President of the United States”; endorsed by TJ as received 26 Mch. and so recorded in SJL with notation “T”; also endorsed by TJ: “to command revenue cutter.”

The revenue cutter General Greene entered service in 1797 under the command of Isaac Roach. The following year, the vessel was placed under command of George Price and taken into service by the United States Navy. It returned to the cutter service in 1799 and was sold in 1802 (NDQW description begins Dudley W. Knox, ed., Naval Documents Related to the Quasi-War between the United States and France, Naval Operations, Washington, D.C., 1935–38, 7 vols. (cited by years) description ends , Dec. 1800–Dec. 1801, 367; Philadelphia Finlay’s American Naval and Commercial Register, 15 Aug. 1798; Gazette of the United States, 31 Mch. 1798).

TJ gave command of the REVENUE CUTTER NOW BUILDING at Philadelphia to Richard Howard (TJ to Gallatin, 10 June 1802).

Index Entries