James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Jesse Kersey, 9 April 1810 (Abstract)

§ From Jesse Kersey1

9 April 1810, Downingtown. Feels an interest in JM’s welfare, “having been in thy company some months past” when the Senate was discussing the status of some Cuban emigrants. Sends a pamphlet written “to reform the habits of our Country and that in relation to an evil which is now rendering Miserable many thousands of our fellow Creatures.” Mentions in a postscript that the author is an “obscure Character” but “respectable in his own neighbourhood,” and Kersey would be happy to see his ideas “spread over the Continent of America & particularly among the influential part of the community.”

RC (DLC). 1 p. Enclosure not found.

1Jesse Kersey (1768–1845) was a prominent Quaker minister who resided at Downingtown in Chester County, some thirty miles outside Philadelphia. He was involved in antislavery activities and discussed the problems of emancipation with JM in a meeting on 1 June 1814. He also opposed the War of 1812 and visited Washington, probably sometime in the second half of 1812, to call on JM “to embrace the first opening to close the contest” (Jesse Kersey, A Narrative of the Early Life, Travels, and Gospel Labors of Jesse Kersey … [Philadelphia, 1851], pp. 74, 195–96).

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