From Joseph Jones
RC (LC: Madison Papers). Docketed, “June 25. 1782.”
Spring Hill 25th June 1782
Your favor of the 4th. instant1 and the packet of Newspapers by Mr. Webb went to Richmond2 and were returned to Fredericksburg where I received them the last week but no letter from you by that post. From Richmond I had written you a long letter and geting home in time for the post at Fredericksburg added a short one of some other matters that occured after my geting home.3 these Letters I am told last night have been intercepted near Onions works in Maryland4 and carryed (probably) to Sr. Guy Carleton before this and you will I expect have an opportunity of reading them in the royal Gazette5 soon to which I must refer you for their contents having no Copy and not well recollecting the whole. I fear there are some observations I could wish not to be public. If any such they must relate to some transactions of the Assembly or individual members but I think none of them very reprehensible though6 known to the parties. I was particular respecting the petition you mentioned to have been communicated to the Minister7 and this may induce a publication. I mentd. the continuation of the old Delegates by a vote but wch. I afterwards found to be a mistake the vote being postponed untill the Bill had passed repealing the Law that rendered yourself and J. J. ineligible8—the allowance 8 dols. P day—no directions given for the settlement of the time past although the sense of the House asked by the Auditors respecting the daily allowance.9 Jefferson Mason Randolph Lee & Walker have been appointed to State the Title of Virga. to western territory—Com: to draw instructions for Delegates respecting western territory.10
Ct. Beneouski had not reached Richmond when I left it but hear since he was there but not likely to succeed this days post will I expect communicate the result of his application.11
In the intercepted Letter I transmitted you a Bill of Mr. Ross’s on whitesides in my favor for two hundred and some dollars to pay Mr. C Griffin or if he was not in immediate want a Messr. Baker & Co. wch. Mr. Solomon could inform you of.12 I that week recd. a line from my friend Griffin requesting a remittance of the money. I have wrote to day to Mr. Ross to renew the draft & forward it to me & it shall go forward as soon as I receive it.13 pray present my Compliments to Mr. Griffin and acquaint him wth. this circumstance. I have not yet concluded on my return to Philadelphia but think I shall do it at least for the fall if I can prevail upon Mrs. Jones to accompany me with Joe. she is now up in Orange on a visit to her Father.14 If I visit Phila: it will be about the middle or twentieth next month you will therefore be so obliging as to inquire abt. a lodging furnished, with two lodging rooms servts. room, and two entertaining rooms & the use of the Kitchen or a convenient House furnished that if I come up you may be able to engage me one upon as moderate terms as you can. as soon as I make up my mind upon the Journey you shall be informed. Mr. Lee15 has I expect joined you as he was to set out in a few days after my leaving him in Richmond. pray make my compliments to Col. Bland & Mr Lee if present & believe me
3. Neither the long nor the short letter has been found. The duration of Jones’s visit to Richmond is obscure. On 21 May (q.v.), writing to JM from Spring Hill, Jones stated that he probably would be in Richmond in “eight or ten days.” Jones’s stay in the town was evidently brief, because he left there ahead of the postrider who carried Governor Harrison’s letter of 8 June 1782 to the delegates in Congress (q.v., n. 1; also the third sentence of the present letter).
4. The mail had been intercepted as the postrider was “passing Gravely-Hill in the forest between Onions’s old iron-works and Harford-town” (Virginia Gazette description begins Virginia Gazette, or, the American Advertiser (Richmond, James Hayes, 1781–86). description ends , 29 June 1782).
6. The meaning would be clearer if, instead of “though,” Jones had written, “even though they should become.” See Randolph to JM, 20 June 1782, for Randolph’s comment about how Jones, when in Richmond, had been “very warm” in his criticism of the Lees.
8. Jones (“J. J.”) viewed the attack as being directed against him and JM rather than against JM and Randolph (Randolph to JM, 20 June 1782, and n. 5). The constitutional or statutory limitation upon the duration of a delegate’s tenure in Congress applied equally to JM and Jones. Since 14 December 1779, when the General Assembly had elected both of them, their terms as delegates had been of the same duration (Papers of Madison description begins William T. Hutchinson, William M. E. Rachal, et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison (4 vols. to date; Chicago, 1962——). description ends , I, 318; III, 161).
9. The auditors were Bolling Stark, Harrison Randolph, and John Boush. Their letter requesting a scale of depreciation whereby the long overdue per diem allowance of the delegates from Virginia in Congress could be determined had been received by the House of Delegates on 4 June 1782 (Minute Book, House of Delegates, May 1782 description begins Minute Book, House of Delegates, May 1782, MS in Virginia State Library. description ends , p. 61).
12. David Ross, Peter Whiteside, Cyrus Griffin, and Haym Salomon. Jones’s letter to JM on 16 July 1782 (q.v.) identifies “Baker & Co.” as “Baker Potts & Co. Ironmongers” near the corner of Second and Arch Streets, Philadelphia. Baker may have been Hilary Baker (1750–1798), an “iron merchant” (Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography, X , 450). Potts was probably Thomas Potts (1735–1785), an ironmonger (ibid., IV , 226).
14. See Jones to JM, 21 May 1782, n. 11. “Joe” (1780–ca. 1808) was the son of Jones and his second wife, Mary Waugh Dawson (George H. S. King, comp. and ed., Marriages of Richmond County, Virginia, p. 249).