Thomas Jefferson Papers

Burr Conspiracy Statement, 31 May 1807

May 1807

Doctor Watkins in a Speech made in the House of Representatives of the Territory of Orleans, more replete with extravagant, barefaced falshoods than anything of the Kind ever before uttered—Tells us that General Adair, the day he reached the City of Orleans, mentioned, “He had left Nash Ville the 22nd. of December, and that Burr was then there with two Flat Boats, destined for this City.” In relation to this, Watkins, it may Suffice barely to remark at present, that He declared to General Wilkinson a few days after the General reached the City, and in the House of James Carrick Esqr, that “it was nonsense to attempt to fortify the City, for if the people expected from above Should Come down, the General could not resist them with His regular force, and that He would not find a man to assist Him here—That the flames of Revolution were so widely extended, it was not in the power of the Government to extinguish them, and that they deserved it, from their imbecility, and their connivance at Mirandas expedition, for that every child in the Streets who could lisp, would tell you they did connive at that expedition— That we might talk of discontents on the Mississippi, but they were to be found on the Atlantic also.” This Patriotic Gentleman was at the time, the Mayor of the City, and the Speaker of the House of Delegates, and yet we are told even by himself that we had not a Traitor among us, but that the Glow of Patriotism was universal; and we hear that Burr’s Plot was a Mere “Intrigue.” Fie upon it Mr. Randolph, Fie upon it— Would you Stab your Country to gratify your ambition or your revenge?—

Ja: Wilkinson

DLC: Burr Conspiracy Collection.

Index Entries