James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Joseph Jones, 23 March 1797

From Joseph Jones

Fredg. 23d. Mar: 1797.

Dr. Sr.

From good information the Poll between Dawson and Posey was as follows—Spots: Dawson 204 Posey 68—Orange Dawson 156. Posey 46—Louisa Dawson 195. Posey 161—Madison I do not recollect the numbers but about 30 Majority for Dawson. Heath1 and Tayloe2 having declined a Poll Dr. Jones and Ball were the only Candidates. I have heard only from K. George where Jones had near five for one. The presumption is he will be elected. Nicholas and Brent3 I believe are not opposed. In the room of Moore4 it is probable David Hoomes5 will be elected agt. Bowyer6 and Steele.7 From all accots. Rutherford8 will be hard pushed if not pushed out. I am told it will depend on the Quakers in that quarter. I last Post mentioned that Saunders had arrived and can now inform you that Blair received and sent on to Orange the things you sent by him. Duly Ann Capt. McNamara is in Phila: and Capt. Taylor in the  9 Ann sailed from here a few days past. The House he goes to is one of the Walns & Co. I had written to Mr. Proudfit10 at Norfolk to send me up a barl. of choice Spirit wch. I intended to divide with Monroe on his arrival but he writes me no good spirit is at this time to be had at Norfolk but will send a cask as soon as he can get what is good. If you receive the money from Yard and have time to get me a barl. of choice old rum or Spirits (my old acquaintance Short will perhaps furnish it of the best) and a bag of the best Coffee be pleased to get them and send with your things round to this place. If you get rum request it to be caned to prevent wasting either at the bung or by gimbles hole. I set off on Monday for Northumberland shall be in Williamsburg the 29th. next month but intend to come here from K. & Queen if I have time of which I have little doubt the business being generally dispatched in six days—a letter to this place or to Williamsburg getting there abt. the time I mention will be requisite to inform me wher. you had been able to get the Spirits [illegible] that I may give Proudfit notice to prevent a double stock which wod. be rather burdensome these hard times from the high price and Scarcity of money. We have now here both Clover and Timothy seed very good I am told at old Mr. Andersons. Wishing you an agreeable Journey I am yr friend & Servt

Jos: Jones.

RC (DLC). Docketed by JM, “Mar. 27. 1797.”

1John Heath was replaced in the Nineteenth Virginia Congressional District, consisting of King George, Lancaster, Northumberland, Richmond, and Westmoreland counties, by Walter Jones (Parsons et al., United States Congressional Districts, p. 74).

2John Tayloe (1772–1828) resided at Mount Airy in Richmond County (PJM–PS, 1:290 n. 1).

3Richard Brent and John Nicholas were reelected in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Virginia Congressional Districts, consisting respectively of Fairfax, Loudoun, and Prince William counties and Culpeper, Fauquier, and Stafford counties (Parsons et al., United States Congressional Districts, p. 74).

4Andrew Moore was replaced by David Holmes in the Second Virginia Congressional District, comprising Augusta, Bath, Rockbridge, Rockingham, and Shenandoah counties (ibid., p. 70).

5David Holmes (1769–1832), a lawyer practicing in Winchester, Virginia, served in the Fifth through the Tenth Congresses. In 1809 JM appointed him governor of Mississippi Territory, an office he held until 1817 (Dunbar Rowland, ed., Mississippi: Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons … [4 vols.; Atlanta, 1907], 1:878–89).

6Probably John Bowyer, justice of the peace in Rockbridge County and county lieutenant of militia (VMHB description begins Virginia Magazine of History and Biography. description ends , 17 [1909]: 323).

7Probably John Steele (1737–1820), who served in the Virginia Continental line and was a colonel of militia in the 1790s (DAR Patriot Index description begins National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, DAR Patriot Index (Washington, 1966). description ends , p. 644; CVSP description begins William P. Palmer et al., eds., Calendar of Virginia State Papers and Other Manuscripts (11 vols.; Richmond, 1875–93). description ends , 6:426–28).

8Robert Rutherford was replaced in the First Virginia Congressional District of Berkeley and Frederick counties by Daniel Morgan (Parsons et al., United States Congressional Districts, p. 70).

9Left blank by Jones.

10John Proudfit was a merchant and shipowner in Norfolk (WMQ description begins William and Mary Quarterly. description ends , 1st ser., 18 [1909–10]: 268).

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