James Madison Papers

To James Madison from John Graham, 3 September 1810

From John Graham

Dept of State 3d Sepr 1810

Dear Sir

I received this Morning the Letter which you did me the Honor to write to me on the 30th Ult. and shall before next Mail look thro: the Registers left here by Mrs Skipwith for the purpose of ascertaining whether they contain any entries or Copies corresponding to the Papers you have asked for.

Our Records do not shew that any delegated Power has been given by the President under the Law of June 1794 thro: this Dept. It appears that his orders have gone thro: the War Dept. and that no particular form has been used there, for the purpose of calling out the Militia. The Instructions have generally been sent to the Governors of states or Territories; tho this has not uniformly been the case.

I send a Copy of my Letter to Govr Holmes1 that you may know exactly what has been said to him, and also a Copy of a Letter from the War Dept to Govr Greenup,2 to shew in what way they conveyed their instructions. With the Highest Respect I have the Honor to be Sir, Your Most Obt Sert.

John Graham

You will receive by this Mail Mr Pinkneys Letters by the British Frigate that brought out Mr Morier and also a communication this instant received from Mr Morier himself.3

RC and first enclosure (DLC). RC docketed by JM. For first enclosure, see n. 1. For other enclosures, see nn. 2 and 3.

1Graham enclosed a press copy of his letter to David Holmes, 13 Aug. 1810 (1 p.; marked “Confidential”; printed in Carter, Territorial Papers, Mississippi, 6:99–100).

2Graham was referring to a letter written by Secretary of War Henry Dearborn to Kentucky governor Christopher Greenup on 26 Nov. 1806, requesting the latter to be vigilant in detecting and preventing military expeditions setting out from American soil against the territories of powers at peace with the U.S. (DNA: RG 107, Misc. Letters Sent). The letter was one of a series of instructions sent to governors and army officers in the western states and territories, ordering them to obstruct Aaron Burr’s anticipated enterprise against Spanish territory (see Lipscomb and Bergh, Writings of Jefferson description begins Andrew A. Lipscomb and Albert Ellery Bergh, eds., The Writings of Thomas Jefferson (20 vols.; Washington, 1903-4). description ends , 1:463–64).

3Graham probably enclosed three duplicate dispatches from William Pinkney (Pinkney to Robert Smith, 1 July and 6 July [two letters] 1810 [DNA: RG 59, DD, Great Britain]). The first reported that there had been no change in Lord Wellesley’s attitude on a replacement for Francis James Jackson as Pinkney had conveyed it to the State Department in January 1810. The first of the dispatches of 6 July discussed John Armstrong’s account of the secret overtures recently made by Napoleon to make peace with Great Britain, while the second letter of that date restated Pinkney’s belief that Lord Wellesley eventually would satisfy American requests for a replacement for Francis James Jackson as well as for a settlement of the dispute over blockades and the Chesapeake affair. Graham also enclosed John Philip Morier’s 31 Aug. letter to Robert Smith, written from New York and announcing that he would present himself at Washington after the administration had assembled there (DNA: RG 59, NFL, Great Britain).

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