James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Theodorick Bland, [22 June] 1783

From Theodorick Bland

RC (LC: Madison Papers). Undated and signature clipped. JM later wrote “Theodk. Bland.” at the close of the letter. The text is faded almost to the point of illegibility. Letter docketed by JM, “Bland Theodk. June 22. 1783.” Cover missing.

[22 June 1783]

Dear Sr.

In consequence of the determination of Congress on Saturday,1 I took the necessary measures, to put myself in a Situation, to fulfill their intentions as far as concerned myself & Family.2 I wrote to the President and to Mercer3—from the former I have got no decisive answer, from the latter none at all I shall look on it as inglorious, and shamefull to quit my station whilst the majority of Congress shall maintain theirs in Philadelphia, and however imprudent, I as an Individual may deem it that Congress or the members shd trust their persons in the hands of a Mutinous army, without support, if they determine so to do, I on my part shall without hesitation share their fate. It is my wish therefore that you wd as soon as possible let me know their final determination on this point, and particularly how matters stand respecting the determination of the Exe. Council &.c.4 that I may either return or send for my family accordingly,5 it being personally perfectly indifferent to me which I do

& you’ll oblige

Theodk. Bland

1JM Notes, 21 June 1783, and n. 5.

2Although the place to which Bland had gone is not known, he may have been writing from Trenton or Princeton.

3Elias Boudinot and John Francis Mercer, respectively.

4JM Notes, 21 June 1783, and n. 7.

5Mrs. Bland evidently was in Philadelphia. She and her husband had no children. Besides his wife, Bland meant by “family” their household slaves (Charles Campbell, ed., Bland Papers, I, viii).

Index Entries