James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Anthony Merry, 30 June 1805

From Anthony Merry

Washington, Sunday Night, June 30th. 1805.

Mr Merry has the Honor to present his Respects to Mr Madison, and to transmit to him inclosed Extracts of Two Letters which he received by the Mail of this Evening1 from the Governor of Nova Scotia,2 and by which he has had the Satisfaction to learn that the Effects belonging to the President and to Mr Madison have been liberated, and, if not already arrived, may be expected shortly at New York.

RC and enclosures (DLC). In a clerk’s hand. For enclosures, see n. 1.

1Merry enclosed extracts from (1) Sir John Wentworth to Merry, 1 June 1805 (2 pp.), stating that he had communicated Merry’s letter about the property belonging to JM, Jefferson, and Pierce Butler, to Vice Adm. Sir Andrew Mitchell who, together with the captor, Captain Nairne, and the judge of the vice-admiralty court, concurred with Merry’s recommendation. Accordingly, the property was delivered to Mr. Smith, a Halifax merchant, for shipment to the United States. Wentworth added that one of the jars had been “found broken by being badly stowed” but that the rest should “be received in good order,” and (2) Wentworth to Merry, 11 June 1805 (1 p.), saying that since his previous letter he had learned that the cases of wine and the other items had remained in the care of the captain who commanded the ship in which they were imported, and that they would “be forwarded this Week.” A 22 June 1805 bill of lading created when the goods were forwarded listed four packages for JM, consisting of three cases and one jar; thirteen packages for Jefferson, consisting of seven cases, one bag, four boxes of preserves, and one jar; and two cases for Pierce Butler, all of which were shipped on the Adventure, Leonard Pearson, from Halifax to “Mr. Allen” at New York for delivery to JM, Jefferson, and Pierce Butler. Allen was the supercargo of the New Orleans; the captain was William Butler (Merry to JM, 19 Aug. 1805, DLC; 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 8:359).

2Harvard graduate Sir John Wentworth (1737–1820) was born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, had an early career as a merchant, and in 1766 was named governor of New Hampshire. During the American Revolution he raised a company of Loyalists, and in 1778 he left America for England. In 1783 he was named North American surveyor general and sent to Nova Scotia; in 1792 he was named lieutenant governor; and in 1795 he was created baronet. He was removed from the governorship in 1808 but retained his position as surveyor general which, together with annuities granted by the Nova Scotia legislature and the British government, provided him with a means of support until his death (Halpenny, Dictionary of Canadian Biography, 5:848–51).

Index Entries