James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Henry Tazewell, 29 June 1795

From Henry Tazewell

Phila: 29th. June 1795.

Dear Sir

I now inclose you Bache’s paper in which is contained Extracts of the Treaty with England.1 They are not correct, but will serve to enable you to form an Idea of this new Compact. I also send you a Copy of the Resolution ratifying the Treaty.2 You will perceive that this resolution begets difficulties in the way of a complete ratification, which must again bring the whole subject before the Senate.3

I hope I shall see you in Fredericksburg as I pass thro. that Town next week, when I shall be able to shew you the Treaty at length which I cannot send to you under the resolution of the Senate for secrecy. Yours

Henry Tazewell

RC and one enclosure (DLC: Rives Collection, Madison Papers). RC docketed by JM. For surviving enclosure, see n. 2.

1On 29 June Republican Benjamin Franklin Bache’s Philadelphia Aurora General Advertiser published an abstract of the Jay treaty. Federalist John Fenno’s Gazette of the U.S. had already leaked article 12 of the treaty on 26 June, together with the resolution that conditionally ratified the treaty and suspended part of its twelfth article. Since that article embarrassed the Federalists, they evidently wanted to publicize its suspension. Concluding that the continued secrecy of the treaty was doing more harm than good, Washington and Secretary of State Randolph determined to publish it. But before they could do so, Senator Stevens Thomson Mason of Virginia sent the treaty’s full text on 29 June to Bache, who printed it as a pamphlet (Evans description begins Charles Evans, ed., American Bibliography … 1639 … 1820 (12 vols.; Chicago, 1903–34). description ends 29743) and advertised it in the Aurora General Advertiser, 1 July 1795.

2Tazewell enclosed the text of the Senate resolution conditionally ratifying the Jay treaty (see Pierce Butler to JM, 26 June 1795, n. 1). Tazewell’s enclosure includes a list of the ten senators who opposed ratification.

3On the procedural questions raised by the Senate’s conditional ratification of the Jay treaty, see Tazewell to JM, 30 Aug. 1795, and n. 2.

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