Thomas Jefferson Papers

James Monroe to Thomas Jefferson, 1 October 1813

From James Monroe

octr 1st 1813.

Dear Sir

I have read with great interest & satisfaction your remarks on finance, which I return by the bearer. we are now at the mercy of monied institutions, who have got the circulating medium into their hands, & in that degree the command of the country, by the adventurers in them, who without mu[ch] capital are making fortunes out of the public and individuals. many of these institutions are hostile to the govt, and the others have already gone far in loans made to it. Hamiltons plan, was a reliance on monied institutions, aided by taxes, at the head of which he had plac’d a national bank, since extinct; and Gallatins has been the same, in respect to a national bank, having proposed to reinstate it, & in respect to any1 species of taxes. Yours appears to me to be more simple, more consistent with original principles & with those of the constitution, much more œconomical, and certain of success, in both its parts, if it could be got into operation. I fear however that that has become difficult if not impracticable, by the ascendancy gaind by the existing institutions, & the opposition they would be sure to make, to its introduction in the radical form proposed, on which its success would principally depend. These corporate bodies would make a great struggle, before they would surrender—either their power, or the profit they are making by the use of it. Something however ought to be done to relieve the nation from the burthens & dangers inseparable from the present plan.

The fatiguing process of my concerns here, has kept me constantly at home and engaged. we will have the pleasure to dine with you to morrow if the weather permits, and mr Hay who joind us last night, indisposed, will accompany us, if his health should improve.

with great respect & esteem I am Dear Sir your friend

Jas Monroe

I find among my papers a bond of yours which came into my hands, while you were in Europe, & your affrs in those of Colonel Lewis which is enclosed.

RC (DLC); edge frayed; endorsed by TJ as received 1 Oct. 1813 and so recorded in SJL. Enclosures: TJ to John Wayles Eppes, 24 June, 11 Sept. 1813. Other enclosure not found.

TJ’s close friends Francis Eppes (ca. 1747–1808) and Nicholas Lewis managed his business affairs while he was in europe serving as United States minister plenipotentiary in France, 1784–89 (MB description begins James A. Bear Jr. and Lucia C. Stanton, eds., Jefferson’s Memorandum Books: Accounts, with Legal Records and Miscellany, 1767–1826, 1997, The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , 1:23, 225; PTJ description begins Julian P. Boyd, Charles T. Cullen, John Catanzariti, Barbara B. Oberg, and others, eds., The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1950– , 34 vols. description ends , 6:210; Malone, Jefferson description begins Dumas Malone, Jefferson and his Time, 1948–81, 6 vols. description ends , 2:203–4).

1Preceding four words interlined in place of “the.”

Index Entries

  • Bank of the United States; and A. Gallatin search
  • Bank of the United States; and A. Hamilton search
  • Constitution, U.S.; mentioned search
  • Eppes, Francis (TJ’s brother-in-law); manages TJ’s business affairs search
  • Gallatin, Albert; and Bank of the United States search
  • Hamilton, Alexander (1757–1804); and Bank of the United States search
  • Hay, George; health of search
  • Lewis, Nicholas; manages TJ’s affairs search
  • Monroe, James; and TJ’s letters on finance search
  • Monroe, James; forwards bond to TJ search
  • Monroe, James; letters from search
  • Monroe, James; on government finance search
  • Monroe, James; plans to visit TJ search