James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Lemuel Sawyer, 2 January 1810

From Lemuel Sawyer

Washington 2d. Jany. 1810

Dear Sir,

Upon the supposition that no one has accepted the office of the Collectorship of New Orleans,1 I take the liberty of mentioning to you that if no person can be found better qualified, I would be willing to take it. I know it is customary for persons in such cases to procure others to recommend them, but I see no impropriety in my making known to you my disposition in that regard, and I trust you will do sufficient justice to my patriotism & sentiments as to beleive, that altho I would endeavour to discharge its duties faithfully, yet I would by no means feel disappointed in the selection of another. My object in this case is not the emoluments of the office merely, but the obtaining a situation in a climate much more congenial to my health than this. My station here would in that case be filled by a person, much better qualified than myself, to take an active support in the measures of your administration, as well as to prove experimentally, the high estimation in which you are professd to be held, by Dr. Sir yr Ob Hule Sert.

L Sawyer2

Please consider this entirely inter nos.

RC (DLC). Docketed by JM.

1After the customs collector at New Orleans, William Brown, absconded with public funds, JM nominated Thomas Hill Williams to the post on 3 Jan. (William C. C. Claiborne to JM, 19 Nov. 1809; Senate Exec. Proceedings description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States of America (3 vols.; Washington, 1828). description ends , 2:135, 136).

2Lemuel Sawyer (1777–1852) was a Republican congressman from North Carolina, 1807–13, 1817–23, and 1825–29.

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