James Madison Papers

From James Madison to Clement Biddle, 6 December 1804 (Abstract)

§ To Clement Biddle

6 December 1804, Department of State. “I have received your letter of the 1st. inst. [not found], and have to inform you, that as the instrument, a copy of which it enclosed, appears to be exicuted by no other of the party than Thomas Reilly, it will be insufficient to enable you and Mr. Latimer1 to receive the two instalments due on the awards in the case of the Brig Sally, Logan, Master.2 As there appears to be a complication of interests founded no doubt upon a variety of facts, not known with certainty here, it is deemed a necessary, and it is hoped not inconvenient precaution, to request that a bond of indemnity should be exicuted to the United States in the sum of £5500 Stg. with sureties to be approved by the Cashier of the Bank of the United States. With this bond and the instrument above referred to, exicuted by all the parties named in it, the money will be paid to you and Mr. Latimer, or your Attorney duly constituted.”

Letterbook copy (DNA: RG 59, DL, vol. 14). 2 pp.

1This was probably George Latimer, who was a director of the Pennsylvania Insurance Company and former collector at Philadelphia (James Robinson, The Philadelphia Directory for 1804 … [Philadelphia, (1804); Shaw and Shoemaker description begins R. R. Shaw and R. H. Shoemaker, comps., American Bibliography: A Preliminary Checklist for 1801–1819 (22 vols.; New York, 1958–66). description ends 7044], 132, 291; Senate Exec. Proceedings description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States of America (3 vols.; Washington, D.C., 1828). description ends , 1:432).

2The Sally, which was condemned by the Board of Admiralty in March 1799, was apparently awarded £5,472 1s.6d. by the board of commissioners under the Jay treaty (“List of American Cases under Article 7 of the Treaty with Great Britain of 1794,” DNA: RG 76, Preliminary Inventory 177, entry 179, Great Britain, Treaty of 1794 [Art. VII], Unbound Records, box 1; ibid., box 4).

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