James Madison Papers

To James Madison from William Willis, 9 October 1802

From William Willis

Barcelona 9th. Oct. 1802.

Respected Sir.

Since mine of the 19th. of Sept. inclosing with it the false Register and Mediterranean pass that I demanded & obtained from Capn. Thos. Lewis, and mine of the 29th. of the same month,1 I have Receiv’d from Capn. Mills the Papers mentioned; but none of them are either signed or sealed. I shall send you some of them in a few days. I am trying all in my power to find to a Certainty the Authors, but think best to proceed slowly & silently, Altho’ I have already strong presumptive proof of who were the Actors, and Lewis has even mentioned that he intends to make a voyage shortly from some ports in the mediterranean to the Coast of Africa, in a vessel which he says is prepared for him, but he will find, I trust, that no Consul will Again clear Any vessel with him as master as I shall apprise them of what I have detected him in. I herewith Enclose you an insolent Letter which he wrote me2 and was it not from a hope of further informations on the subject by leaving him a few days at Liberty, I should immediately apply to Authority to do me justice by punishing him. I make him no Answer to his insolent falsehoods, as no improper paper has ever been obtained with my Signature to it from this office, but I have strong suspicions that my hand and Seal has both been forged, as well as that of my vice Consul, as you will see by the papers which I enclosed you, what those who forged those papers were Capable of. Did I know of Any Law to Authorize it, I would Confine both Lewis & Baker & send them to the United stat[e]s by the first frigate that Calls here.

The Court is Still here with the King & queen of Hetruria3 & prince and princess of Naples who depart from this on monday the 11th. I Am Sir with Respectfull Esteem your Most Humble Servt.

Willm Willis

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