James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Griffin Stith, 22 April 1789

From Griffin Stith

Virginia, Northampton County
22d. April 1789.

Dear Sir.

However improper it may be to interrupt the attention which may be devoted to more important concerns; you will not, I am pursuaded, be less disposed to indulge a solicitation which can only proceed from my wishes to serve the interests of a friend, so far as they are found not incompatible with those of the community. Mrs. Grace Bowdoin,1 the present proprietor of the ferry from this shore to York and Norfolk, is apprehensive lest any arrangement should take place relative to the post roads, and conveyance of the mail, which may interfere with the ferry. Should any tendency of this kind become apparent in the regulations which may be made on this head; I should feel myself greatly obliged by any interposition in her behalf which you may think reconcileable with the object of those regulations. Should a line of communication be established through this part of the country; it would doubtless be equally convenient, and more œconomical, to convey the mail by the ferry, than by any other means: and every necessary assurance will be readily given for the punctual discharge of the duty which may be assigned. I am Dear Sir, Your mo: obedt. Servt.

Griffin Stith2

RC (DLC). Docketed by JM.

1Grace Stringer Bowdoin, widow of John Bowdoin (VMHB description begins Virginia Magazine of History and Biography. description ends , XXXVIII [1930], 193).

2Griffin Stith (1753–1794) represented Northampton County in the House of Delegates, 1785–1787 (WMQ description begins William and Mary Quarterly. description ends , 1st ser., XXI [1912–13], 190; Swem and Williams, Register description begins Earl G. Swem and John W. Williams, eds., A Register of the General Assembly of Virginia, 1776–1918, and of the Constitutional Conventions (Richmond, 1918). description ends , p. 432).

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