James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Oliver Towles, 8 November 1791

From Oliver Towles

Virginia November 8th. 1791.

Worthy Sir,

Mr. Towles being about to depart from this State for Philadelphia, on business, has amongst other things been kind enough to undertake the management of some Representations of mine, that are to be laid before Congress; being unable personally to attend to them myself; As they are matters in which I am greatly interested, I shall hold myself highly obliged for your generous attention to the same, and as far as the rules of Propriety, and your convenience may admit of it, to contribute your assistance in forwarding the business.

Earnestly wishing your life may be prolonged to a distant period with health and happiness during its continuation, and eternal felicity thereafter; I conclude sincerely felicitating you, on the heart felt satisfaction you must experience, from the full and just applause, acquired by a Life successfully, and in a manner unremitedly devoted, to the publick good; which is gratefully acknowledged, and will ever be remembered by all, and with peculiar pleasure by, Your most obedient, and humble Servant

O. Towles1

RC (DLC). Docketed by JM.

1Oliver Towles (1736–1825), originally of Spotsylvania County, later of Campbell County and Lynchburg, was the brother of Thomas Towles. Commissioned as a captain in the Sixth Virginia Regiment, he was captured at Germantown and exchanged in 1780. The following year he was appointed lieutenant colonel of the Fifth Virginia Regiment. On 18 Nov. 1791 two petitions from Towles, requesting federal compensation for his military service and his expenses as a prisoner of war, were read in the House and referred to Secretary Knox. On 21 Feb. 1793 the House tabled Knox’s report on Towles’s claim (VMHB description begins Virginia Magazine of History and Biography. description ends , VIII [1900–1901], 429; Journal of the House of Representatives, 2d Cong., 1st sess. [Philadelphia, 1792; Evans description begins Charles Evans, ed., American Bibliography … 1639 … 1820 (12 vols.; Chicago, 1903–34). Roger P. Bristol, ed., Supplement to Charles Evans’ American Bibliography (Charlottesville, Va., 1970). description ends 24910], p. 32; Annals of Congress description begins Debates and Proceedings in the Congress of the United States, 1789–1824 (42 vols.; Washington, 1834–56). description ends , 2d Cong., 2d sess., 885).

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