James Madison Papers

To James Madison from George Joy, 13 June 1812

From George Joy

London 13th June 1812

Dear sir,

I have just parted from Mr. Walker of Birmingham whom you will find mentioned in the Chronicle of this date as having received a certain intimation from Lord Castlereagh.1 Mr: Walker denies altogether the imperious Language of Lord C. which he will require to be contradicted in the Chronicle—he even constructed from his Language that a directly different result would follow. But on repetition of the words by another member of the Committee standing by, to which Mr: W. assented, I cannot say that I see any material difference, except in the ⟨suavity?⟩ of the manner. It amounted to a pretended expectation on the part of Lord C. that, under conciliatory propositions, America would acquiesce in the Continuance of the Orders in Council.

Lord Moira, contrà, told the same Committee this morning that if he were in administration, it should not be half an hour before he would give notice to the American legation that the Orders in Council were withdrawn.

I forbear any remarks at this moment on the puerility of the manner in which the Change of Administration has been lost by his Lordship;2 save only the very obvious one, that if the Prince really means a Change, he would not be diverted from his intention by this pitiful difference

“twixt tweadledum and tweadledee.”

I avail myself of a friend just setting off for Falmouth to hand you this information; and am therefore in haste, very respectfully, Dear sir, Your friend & Servt:

Geo: Joy.

RC and enclosure (DLC: Rives Collection, Madison Papers). RC docketed by JM. For enclosure, see n. 1.

1Joy enclosed a copy of the 13 June London Morning Chronicle, which contained an account of a meeting held at Fife House on 11 June between Lords Liverpool and Castlereagh and other ministers and a deputation, headed by Simon Walker, whose members were giving evidence in Parliament against the orders in council. Lord Castlereagh, as the principal spokesman for the ministers, “defended the justice and policy of those Orders, and in the conclusion, observed, that if the Administration, now formed, were supported by the Legislature and the country, the Americans would be under the necessity of passively submitting to these British regulations.” “After this interview,” the Chronicle added, “we think little hope can reasonably be indulged of the revocation of those measures.”

2During the last week of May and the first week of June 1812, Lord Moira had endeavored to persuade the leaders of the Whig party to form a ministry with some of the Tories who had served with Perceval. His efforts included proposals for the repeal of the orders in council and the reform of Parliament, but they were ultimately unsuccessful because the prince regent rejected conditions demanded by the Whigs that required changes in the royal household (Watson, The Reign of George III, pp. 499–500).

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