James Madison Papers

To James Madison from James Wilkinson, 29 February 1812

From James Wilkinson

Washington Feby. 29th. 1812


Since I had the Honor to address you, the day before Yesterday, I perceive by an indorsement on my defense, before the General Court Martial which tried me, I have reserved the right to correct it,1 which will Enable me with propriety, to alter the manner without changing the matter, and I tresspass this observation on you, to prevent the appearance of caprice or inconsistency in my Conduct. With perfect respect, I have the Honor to be sir Your most Obedt & Humble Servant

Ja: Wilkinson

RC (DLC). Docketed by JM.

1In a note attached to the first page of Wilkinson’s defense in his 1811 court-martial, the transcriber pleaded the “pressure of circumstances” to excuse the “imperfections” of the record, which, “it is to be feared, will be found extremely incorrect.” He added: “The accused, whatever may be his destiny, looks forward to an opportunity for revision” (DNA: RG 153, Records relating to the 1811 and 1815 Courts-Martial of Maj. Gen. James A. Wilkinson).

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