James Madison Papers

To James Madison from William Short, 29 March 1809

From William Short

Madn. P.—March 29. [1809, Paris]—make use of occasion announced by Gel. A though precarious—catarrh—& pain of writing—do not address Sec. of S—he not known yet—state of information here—zero—his nomination only known. Anxious to write so as to explain the cause of my delay here—my letters by Union sent by A1—Wait on Ct. R.2—postpone details for another occasion—the advantage of first seeing him here—& the expectation of the aviso3—first during the month of Janry—then feby—then March—expected one every 6 week or 2 months—importance of recieving his next despatches here—they will be more particular—route for them uncertain after my departure—need also of ⟨clearer answers?⟩ to points asked before leaving Amer.—If the delay of Aviso had been foreseen wd. not have waited—shd. have suffered, health weak since my arrival—Austn. Ambdr [one or two words illegible]—ask him to examine the delay there by degrees & not in mass—no doubt it will then appear advisable & proper—presentatn. to Emp. by Charg[é] & why—gracious then as also on a second occasion—will be more particular by another opportunity—Daschkoff4 here—forbear genl. politics as he will be informed by A—If this letter shd. perchance find him at Mtpelier or Monte—beg him to say to Mr J. intended to write to him but fo[u]nd myself so much fatigued by this effort that obliged to postpone it.

Ms (DLC: Short Papers). An outline of a letter to JM which has not been found. From Short’s calendar of letters sent in 1809, arranged in double columns on separate sheets of paper.

1While awaiting confirmation of his appointment to the Russian court, Short availed himself of General Armstrong’s diplomatic pouch for his correspondence. The Senate’s rejection of Short’s nomination aborted the mission (William B. Giles to JM, 27 Feb. 1809 [DLC]).

2Count Nicolas de Romanzoff, the Russian minister of foreign affairs.

3An aviso was a vessel used for diplomatic dispatches.

4André de Daschkoff was appointed Russian consul general to the U.S. in June 1808 (ASP description begins American State Papers: Documents, Legislative and Executive, of the Congress of the United States … (38 vols.; Washington, 1832–61). description ends , Foreign Relations, 3:298).

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