James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Christian Febiger, 2 April 1789

From Christian Febiger

Philadelphia Aprill 2nd. 1789.


Haveing had the honor of being Known to and treated with the politest Attention by you1 and conscious of haveing done nothing to obliterate your good Opinion,

I boldly venture to address you in the familiar Style of a Friend.

The Supreme Executive Councill of Pensylvania are on the Brink of appointing me naval Officer in this City, with the express View of recomending for and getting me appointed to said Office or any one created in its stead under the new Government. A Favourite of a certain political Party here is in the Way, he has held it more than 12 Years2—Particulars relative to this, my Friend General Muhlenberg will inform you. Whether I gett the State Appointment (:which would be butt of short Duration:) or not, I propose solliciting the justly reverd. Chief & the most honorable Senate for that or some other Office, which I may fill with Propriety.3

Permitt me my Dear Sir to sollicit your Interposition in my Behalf.

A Gentleman of your long standing in Congress has Weight & Influence, if you exert a small Part of it in my Behalf, you may rest assurd: that every Exertion on my part shall be usd: to deserve it. I have the honor to be with the most unfeignd Regard—Your much obligd. & most obedient Servant

Christian Febiger

RC (DLC). Docketed by JM.

1See PJM description begins William T. Hutchinson et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison (vols. 1–10, Chicago, 1962–77; vols. 11—, Charlottesville, Va., 1977—). description ends , II, 191, 193 n. 17.

2Frederick Phile (d. 1793), naval (customs) officer at Philadelphia since 1777, was appointed to the same post under the federal government (DHFC description begins Linda Grant De Pauw et al., eds., Documentary History of the First Federal Congress of the United States of America (3 vols. to date; Baltimore, 1972—). description ends , II, 15, 20, 536).

3Unsuccessful in his quest for a federal appointment, Febiger was elected treasurer of Pennsylvania in November 1789 (Pa. Archives, 1st ser., XI, 638).

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