James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Stephen Cathalan Jr., 21 October 1804 (Abstract)

§ From Stephen Cathalan Jr.

21 October 1804, Marseilles. “I have the honor of Confirming you my last Respects of the 22d. Septer. last, & of the Inclosures therein; I have only time, by this mail for Bordx. to beg your refference to the here annexed Copy of a letter I Received from J. Barnes Esqre. about the 3d. Attack against Tripoly.1

“I am informed the Gazette of Genoa has published Such Repport, adding that the Gun-Boats &ca. had returned at Syracuse from whence it Came, & that Commodore Saml. Baron was Continuing off Tripoly with three Frigates &c. till matters Should be Settled.”

RC and enclosure (DNA: RG 59, CD, Marseilles, vol. 2). RC 1 p.; in a clerk’s hand, signed by Cathalan; postmarked at New York, 30 Jan.; docketed by Wagner. Cover signed and dated by William Lee at Bordeaux, 1 Nov. 1804. For enclosure, see n. 1.

1Cathalan enclosed an extract (1 p.) of a letter to him from Joseph Barnes at Leghorn, 12 Oct. 1804, describing the U.S. attack on Tripoli in which Lt. James Decatur, Master Commandant Richard Somers, and Midshipman Henry Wadsworth were killed. Barnes added that the assault was so effective that the pasha was expected “to make peace almost on any terms.” For the 3 Aug. 1804 attack in which Decatur was killed, see Knox, Naval Documents, Barbary Wars description begins Dudley W. Knox, ed., Naval Documents Related to the United States Wars with the Barbary Powers (6 vols.; Washington, D.C., 1939–44). description ends , 4:295. For the 3 Sept. 1804 explosion of the Intrepid, in which Somers and Wadsworth died, see Richard O’Brien to JM, 14 Sept. 1804 and n. 2.

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