Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from James Madison, 26 July 1803

From James Madison

Washington July 26. 1803

Dear Sir

Having received some days ago, but not in time for the last mail, the enclosed petition, I have thought it proper to forward with it a pardon, that in case it should be extended to the party, delay might be avoided. I know nothing more of the convict or of the merits of the petition than are to be gathered from the petition itself and the letter from W. Jones. It is signed, I observe by respectable names of all parties. Mr. Wagner will open your answer and make the proper communication to Mr. W. Jones.

No foreign information has been recd. since your departure; nor is any thing further known with respect to Bernadotte or Merry.

I have sent for a pr. of horses, and expect them here in two or three days. I am hurrying my preparations to leave this place as soon as they arrive; but have found the winding up the essential business more tedious than I was fully aware. Several letters which go into cypher particularly one to Mr. Monroe on the subject of Spain have run into considerable length. Mr. Gallatin is still here, but considers every as his last. Mr. E. Livingston made a visit for two days, and returned, I believe without saying a word to any one on the subject which was supposed to cause the visit; nor do I believe that a word was said to him on it.

With respectful attachment I remain yrs.

James Madison

I got Mr. Wagner to see Mr. Mason on the subject of the Pardon. Mr. Mason has promised to write to you

I inclose a supplemental communication from Mr. King, in several views important. also a letter resigning a Commission of Bankruptcy

RC (DLC); at foot of text: “The President of the U. States”; endorsed by TJ as received from the State Department on 29 July and “Samuel Miller. E. Livingston. King’s lre” and so recorded in SJL. Enclosures: (1) Petition of Ambrose Vasse and Others to TJ, 17 July. (2) Pardon for Samuel Miller, 25 July (see Petition of Ambrose Vasse and Others to TJ, 17 July). (3) Rufus King to Madison, [ca. 20] July (see TJ to Madison, 31 July). (4) Richard Skinner to Madison, Manchester, Vermont, 15 July, submits his resignation as bankruptcy commissioner, noting that the state office he holds precludes him from keeping the federal appointment; he recommends Jonathan E. Robinson, an attorney at Bennington of “real merit” and the son of Vermont’s chief justice, Jonathan Robinson, as his successor (RC in DNA: RG 59, LAR; endorsed by TJ: “Skinner Richd. to mr Madison resigns as Commr. bkrptcy”). (5) Israel Smith to Madison, Manchester, 15 July, supporting Skinner’s recommendation of Jonathan E. Robinson as bankruptcy commissioner; Smith is personally acquainted with Robinson and believes he is “well qualified to fill the vacancy” (RC in same; endorsed by TJ: “Robinson Jonathan E. to be Commr. bkrptcy at Bennington Vermt. v. Richd. Skinner resd.”).

w. jones: Walter Jones, Jr., the former U.S. attorney for the Potomac District (Vol. 33:288n). Jones was among those who signed the 17 July petition from Ambrose Vasse and Others to TJ recommending clemency for Samuel Miller.

For Madison’s instructions of 29 July to monroe about acquisition of the Floridas, see Notes on a Cabinet Meeting, 16 July.

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