James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Walter Jones, 18 June 1794

From Walter Jones

June 18th. 1794.

Dear Sir.

I remain your Debtor for two Letters,1 which obligation would have been Sooner discharged, but that the accounts we heard of the adjournment of Congress rendered it improbable that my Letters would find you in Philadelphia.

I write this by a transient & hasty opportunity, which allows not time for any reflexions or questions on public affairs. I just take time to mention that many weeks ago an Intimation Came to me from a distant part, that one of our Senators meant to resign,2 & a proposition, that I should take measures, to become his Successor. I cannot finally resolve yet, upon the Course I shall take; and indeed it would depend much upon the probable prospect of not being repulsed, if I attempted it. I hear that Colo. Hopkins is looked upon generally as one who will Succeed, and I do not hear of any other person particularly named. Our part of the Country is So out of the Line of general Intelligence that we Collect with difficulty the general opinion of the State.

Should you think proper to mention my Name, to the Delegates you may meet with, & to write me Some time hence on the prospect you take of the probable Success of my declaration, it would contribute much to Shape my resolution. I am dear Sir with affectionate and sincere Esteem

Walt: Jones

RC (DLC: Rives Collection, Madison Papers). Docketed by JM.

1Letters not found.

2Both U.S. senators from Virginia resigned: John Taylor of Caroline on 11 May and Monroe on 27 May. On 18 Nov. the General Assembly elected Henry Tazewell to succeed Taylor and Stevens Thomson Mason to succeed Monroe, thus preserving the Republican complexion of Virginia’s senatorial delegation. Tazewell took his scat on 29 Dec., but Mason did not appear in Philadelphia until a special session of the Senate convened on 8 June 1795 to consider the Jay treaty (BDC description begins Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774–1971 (Washington, 1971). description ends , p. 56 and nn. 22–25; JHDV description begins Journal of the House of Delegates of the Commonwealth of Virginia, Begun and Held at the Capitol, in the City of Richmond. Volumes in this series are designated by the month in which the session began. description ends , Nov. 1794 [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 29799], pp. 19–20; see also Risjord, Chesapeake Politics, pp. 448–49).

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