James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Norman Butler and Josiah Benton (Abstract), 1 April 1805

§ From Norman Butler and Josiah Benton

1 April 1805, Hartford, Connecticut. “Under the seventh article of the Treaty between the United States & Great Britain, We Norman Butler & Josiah Benton, have an award for the Brig Sally, Josiah Benton Master, and her Cargo condemned at Tobago, which award, includes also the Mariners Interest; but in January 1804, on application at your Office, We received an order, for George W Erving Esqr. American Agent in London to pay our Interest seperately from the Mariners,1 and in the same month of January, we executed our powers of Attorney authorizing either of two Gentlemen in Birmingham to receive the award, as the installments became due, by virtue of which powers of Attorney, the first & second installments, were paid by Mr Erving; since which time, we have revoked said powers of Attorney, and under the same seals of Revocation, appointed other persons, for the purpose of receiving the third installment; from which last persons, impowered, We have received information that, it is doubtfull, whether the Agent for the UStates, will pay the said third installment when due, alledging, that the same is contemplated to be paid, at the Treasury of the UStates; which information is very unexpected, and should it be the case, will be of considerable damage to us, as the amount is appropriated in England. We therefore, have to request, that you will be pleased, to inform us, whether, under the circumstances stated, the present order of Government, will remove the payment of our third installment to the Treasury of the UStates; if it does, We must beg leave further to request, that you will be pleased (if compatible with your duty) to permit our third installment to be paid to our attornies in London, and furnish us with, or otherwise give, directions for that purpose.”2

RC (DNA: RG 76, Preliminary Inventory 177, Great Britain, entry 180, Treaty of 1794 (Art. VII), British Spoliations, 1794–1824, box 6, folder S). 2 pp.

1See JM to George W. Erving, 18 Jan. 1804, PJM-SS description begins Robert J. Brugger et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison: Secretary of State Series (9 vols. to date; Charlottesville, Va., 1986–). description ends , 6:359.

2On 10 Apr. 1805 JM replied: “There was no ground for the uncertainty you mention, whether the 3d. instalment of the awards under the British Treaty will be paid in London; but it must be applied for there to Messrs. Baring & Co., between the 15th. July & 11th. Septr. next, otherwise it will be payable here only” (DNA: RG 59, DL, vol. 14; 1 p.).

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