James Madison Papers

Benjamin Harrison to Virginia Delegates, 12 April 1783

Benjamin Harrison to Virginia Delegates

FC (Virginia State Library). In the hand of Thomas Meriwether. Addressed to “Virginia Delegates in Congress.”

Council Chamber April 12th. 1783.


Severe rheumatic Pains prevent my doing more than acknowledge the receipt of yours favor of the 1st. Instant1 and informing you that I shall lay it before the Assembly if you desire it but I really do not know what they can do more than is already done,2 the Treasurer is directed to Pay your Salarys quarterly out of any Money that shall come to his Hands, if it is not done the fault must either be in him or your Agents.3

I am with respect Gentlemen yrs: &c.

B. H.

1Q.v. Harrison’s affliction probably accounts for the recess in the meetings of the Virginia Council of State from 15 to 19 April and the almost complete suspension of letter writing by the governor during the same period (Executive Letterbook, 1783–1786, p. 100, and Executive Letterbook of War Office, 1783–1786, p. 42, MSS in Va. State Library; JCSV description begins H. R. McIlwaine et al., eds., Journals of the Council of the State of Virginia (4 vols. to date; Richmond, 1931——). description ends , III, 77).

2In their letter of 1 April 1783, the delegates asked Harrison to recommend to the Virginia General Assembly that it establish “a Credit” in Philadelphia to enable them “to draw their Salaries” when due rather than to have to resort to usurers for loans. On 1 July 1782 the Assembly had enacted a law assuring the delegates that their salaries would “be paid them quarterly out of such public money as shall hereafter be set apart and appropriated for that use” (Minutes of the House of Delegates, 6 May 1782–2 July 1782, p. 85, MS in Va. State Library; Hening, Statutes description begins William Waller Hening, ed., The Statutes at Large; Being a Collection of All the Laws of Virginia, from the First Session of the Legislature, in the Year 1619 (13 vols.; Richmond and Philadelphia, 1819–23). description ends , XI, 32).

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