From Jacquelin Ambler
RC (LC: Madison Papers). Cover addressed to “The Honobl. James Madison of Congress Philadelphia.” Docketed by JM, “May. 10. 1783.”
Richmond, Virga. 10th. May 1783
To my great mortification Mr. Newton is not yet come to the Assembly and, altho’ I wrote pressingly to him last week to send me the Bill, I have received no Answer. I hinted in my last the probability of your drawing from Mr. Newton’s Bill a part of the Arrears due to you, supposing some of the Gentlemen of the Delegation to have received nearly the amount of their Salaries: will you write me your Opinion as to the practicability of your being ava[i]led in this way. I find Mr. Mercer, as well as Mr. Jones, has given directions to their friends here to draw in their behalf when the Treasury is in Cash; by this it should seem they prefer this mode to that which I had adopted of purchasing Bills on the joint Accot. & remitting them to Philada. it must be obvious to them that both cannot be done.1
Bills, such as I approve, are become scarce, if this was not the case, I confess I should be at a loss to know how to act, as some of the Gentlemen prefer the receiving their proportions here. Yours[,] Mr. Randolph will remit,2 unless you direct the contrary, whenever the Circumstances of the Treasury will enable me to make a dividend.3
Yr friend & Servt
1. Ambler to JM, 3 May 1783, and nn. 1–4. James Monroe, a member of the Council of State, had probably been asked by his uncle, Joseph Jones, “to draw” for him. Monroe was acting in behalf of John Francis Mercer, a friend since their student days at the College of William and Mary (Papers of Madison description begins William T. Hutchinson, William M. E. Rachal, et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison (7 vols. to date; Chicago, 1962——). description ends , V, 192, and n. 6; VI, 43; George Morgan, The Life of James Monroe [Boston, 1921], p. 27; Va. Mag. Hist. and Biog., LIX , 99, 184, 185).
2. Edmund Randolph and JM had helped each other on matters of personal finance for over a year (Papers of Madison description begins William T. Hutchinson, William M. E. Rachal, et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison (7 vols. to date; Chicago, 1962——). description ends , IV, 194, and n. 2; 195, nn. 6, 8; 262; 417; 448; V, 19, and n. 3; 70; 73; 91; 95; 96, n. 3; 104; 128; 266, and n. 1; VI, 182; 183, n. 4). See also Randolph to JM, 24 May 1783.