James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Elias Boudinot, 24 March 1802

From Elias Boudinot

Philadelphia March 24t 1802

Dr Sir

Altho’ I am much averse from intermeddling with the appointments of Government, well knowing the great difficulties attending them, yet from the peculiar Situation and adverse Circumstances of Mr. Isaac C. Barnet of Bourdeaux, a Son of an old Acquaintance who died in the Army during our late Struggle with Great Brittain,1 I am constrained to trouble you with this Letter.

I have been privy to the encouragement and even assurances of Government made to him, if he would continue at his Post, until peace should take place with France. I have been informed from the best authority, that his Conduct has been correct & useful. General Washington in his life time considered him as a very promissing Officer of Government and among the best in France.

Suffer me then Sir, to save you time, to enclose an original Letter, I have just recieved from Mr. Barnet, which will better communicate his real Situation, than any language of mine; and I shall be much obliged by your returning it, when you have done with it.

I do not mean, by this Communication, to urge any thing on Government they have reasons for disapproving, but barely to possess you with his Statement of Facts, and to beg such an Answer as you may think expedient, and which may decide his expectations and ascertain his future prospects. He seems to have his Eye, on the Consulate either of Antwerp or Lisbon. Government only can determine the propriety of th⟨e⟩ Application. I have the honor to be with great respect D Sir Your very Obedt Servt

Elias Boudinot

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