James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Erick Bollman, 23 December 1810

From Erick Bollmann

Philadelphia Dec. 23d. 1810


I take the liberty of sending Your Excellency a Copy of a trifling Production which may perhaps derive some Interest from the Circumstances of the Moment.1

If You will receive it with Indulgence and on Perusal should think well of it I shall be highly gratified. I have the Honour to be with great Respect Your Excellency’s most obedient St.

Erick Bollmann2


1Bollmann probably enclosed a copy of his recently published pamphlet Paragraphs on Banks (Philadelphia, 1810; Shaw and Shoemaker description begins R. R. Shaw and R. H. Shoemaker, comps., American Bibliography: A Preliminary Checklist for 1801–1819 (22 vols. to date; New York, 1958—). description ends 19584). The following day, 24 Dec. 1810, the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce sent Congress a lengthy petition calling for the recharter of the Bank of the United States (see ASP description begins American State Papers: Documents, Legislative and Executive, of the Congress of the United States … (38 vols.; Washington, 1832–61). description ends , Finance, 2:453–54).

2Justus Erick Bollmann (1769–1821) was a physician, born in Hanover, who, in 1796, came to Philadelphia where he established a business house with his brother, Ludwig. He remained in the U.S. until 1814, engaging in a variety of commercial and speculative enterprises. His interests in New Orleans and Mexico made him a suitable agent for the schemes of Aaron Burr in 1806–7, but Brig. Gen. James Wilkinson arrested him and dispatched him to Washington in January 1807 to inform the administration about Burr’s activities. JM was present, taking extensive notes, during Bollmann’s interview with Jefferson where he divulged information in his possession about the Burr conspiracy (Fritz Redlich, “The Business Activities of Eric Bollmann,” Bulletin of the Business Historical Society, 17 [1943]: 81–91, 103–12; “Burr’s Conspiracy: Bollman’s Communication,” 23 Jan. 1807, Madison, Letters [Cong. ed.] description begins [William C. Rives and Philip R. Fendall, eds.], Letters and Other Writings of James Madison (published by order of Congress; 4 vols.; Philadelphia, 1865). description ends , 2:393–401).

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