James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Richard O’Brien, 14 May 1802

From Richard O’Brien, 14 May 1802

Algiers the 14th. of May 1802

Esteemed Sir

On the 29th. of March sailed 5 Algerine Corsairs, and on the 29th. of April sailed 7 sail. To this date they have sent in two Neapolitans, taken within 1 Mile of Toulon, allso, 2 Spanish Vessels one loaded with Sugar Condemned for A Genoa & the other took the Algerine for a pirate & abandoned his Vessel, & on this acot. is Condemned Cargo of wheat.

There has allso This day arrived an Algerine Corsair bringing with him Two french Brigs which were destined for the west indies. The Algerine Sayes They fired 2 Guns at him & for this They are Sent in, but I supose will be cleared.

On the 31st. of March 2 Swedes & 1 American frigate were Cruising of Tripoli. To that date nothing had been taken by tripoline Corsairs, whom were Then all in port.

There Seems to be by the definitive treaty a prospect of a reform intended with the Barbary States. It would be our interest to facilitate the event, by every means in our power.

On our affairs nothing has turned up. This government & that of Tunis is apprehensive of a visit from The Captain Pascha.

The timber & Spikes on the Annuities with this place is anxiously Expected. Allso Money to pay our debts to The Bacris &c. I am Sir respectfully Your most Obt. Servt.

Richd. OBrien

15th. May

This day arrived an Algerine 44 Gun frigt. & brought with her a portugee frigt. of 44 Guns after 2 hours Combat. The Algerine boarded The portugee & Carried her. The portugee has 312 men, landed here & 42 killed & wounded. The Algerine had 30 Killed &c. A great affair to Algiers, & frigt. & Crew, is a loss & dishonoure to portugal, which Cannot be retrived.

Further this day The dey declared That all Christian Corsairs which his Corsairs Should Send in &c. had not Medittirranian passports shd. be Condemned & Considered as Enemies. This was the declaration of The dey to The french Consl.

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