To Edmund Randolph
RC (LC: Madison Papers). Cover franked by “J Madison Jr” and addressed to “Edmund Randolph Esqr. Richmond.” Docketed by Randolph, “J. Madison Aug: 24. 1783.” Beneath this docket is written in an unknown hand, “Letters of the honble J Madison (of Congress),” probably signifying that at one time the cover was at the top of a packet of JM’s letters.
Philada. Aug: 24. 1783
My dear Sir
Mr. Jones who arrived the beginning of the week1 acquainted me with your abortive mission to Maryland which I had not before heard of. To this absence from Richmond I impute your silence by the late mails. I hope for the pleasure of a line by the mail now on its way,2 which will not however be acknowledged till the ensuing week, as I am about returning to Princeton where it will find me too late for the post of this week.3 All that I have now to tell you is that Sr G. Carlton has notified to Congs. his having recd. orders for the evacuation of N. York; but he specifies no time fixed either by the orders or by his own plans. He repeats his lamentations touching the Loyalists and insinuates that the proceedings of the people agst. them are a proof that little or no Govt. exists in the U. States.4
With great affection I am Yr. frd & Svt
J. M Jr
1. In 1783 the twenty-fourth of August was a Sunday. For this reason, JM could have written “to-day” rather than “the beginning of the week,” but he probably meant that Joseph Jones had been in Philadelphia for about a week (Jones to JM, 4 Aug., and n. 1; JM to Randolph, 18 Aug. 1783).
4. Delegates to Harrison, 23 Aug., and n. 1; 4 Oct. 1783. Many years later JM or someone at his bidding placed a bracket at the end of the paragraph. Although the bracket may have been to signify that the entire letter, except for its complimentary close, should be published in the first extensive edition of his writings, only the last two sentences of the paragraph appear in Madison, Papers (Gilpin ed.) description begins Henry D. Gilpin, ed., The Papers of James Madison (3 vols.; Washington, 1840). description ends , I, 566.