James Madison Papers

To James Madison from John Francis Mercer, 16 May 1803 (Abstract)

§ From John Francis Mercer

16 May 1803, “In Council.” “I have submitted to the Council the result of the conversation which I had the honor of holding with you on the application which the Executive of Maryland was directed to make to you on the subject of the Stock of this State in the British Funds.” Has told them the measures JM has taken “in conformity with the views & wishes of this Legislature in which they have expressd their entire concurrence,” but as “their proceedings under these Resolutions” will have to be communicated to the legislature at the next session, the council “woud be gratified by bei[n]g furnishd with a Copy of the Letter” JM wrote to William Pinkney on the subject,1 “if no wise inconsistent with the rules” JM “may have establishd on similar subjects.” “I have also communicated to the Council the result of my application to you respecting” Maryland’s claim on the U.S. “for Arms & Military Stores furnishd during the Western Insurrection, as well as the substance of a personal conference I had with the Secretary of War, to whom you had referrd this subject.”2 The council believes Dearborn “has given a force to some expressions of a Letter of Mr. McHenry,3 the late Minister, to this Executive, which they had not themselves discovered, but which in every view can in no wise affect the justice & legality of the demand.” If objections to the claim exist “on the part of the Executive of the United States,” the council wishes to know them so that they may be communicated to the state legislature, which will doubtless “resort to some mode that may remove the doubts, or present the demand in some form that may be more acceptable.” “Receive my warm acknowledgements,” in which the council entirely concur, “for the interest you have at all times taken in the attainment of that Justice which has so long been withheld from the State & mine especially for your prompt attention to this late application.”

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