To Thomas Jefferson
June 22. 1812
The inclosed letter was sent to me with a request that I wd. forward it. The reason assigned was, that the one of which it is a duplicate, was presumed to have miscarried, no answer to it having been recd.1 An answer will of course be expected.
I inclose a Paper containing the Declaration of war &c. merely to supply a possible miscarriage of others usually recd. by you. It is understood that the Federalists in Congs. are to put all the strength of their talents into a protest agst. the war, and that the party at large are to be brought out in all their force.2
It is impossible to say what effect will follow the assassination of Percival. In England it is doubted whether there will be a successor of the same kidney; whether Wellesley will be the man, with some modifications, not affecting the Character of the Cabinet; or whether he will be allowed to make one for himself, in which case it is supposed, he will bring in the Fox party. All this will depend on the Prince, who it seems is ruled at present by Lady Herbert,3 who at the age of 60 years, has some secret fascination for his vitiated caprice. Yrs. affecy
RC (DLC). Docketed by Jefferson, “recd June 24.”
2. In early July congressional Federalists published An Address of Members of the House of Representatives of the Congress of the United States, to Their Constituents, on the Subject of the War with Great Britain, expressing their disapproval of the war (Alexandria, Va., 1812; Shaw and Shoemaker description begins R. R. Shaw and R. H. Shoemaker, comps., American Bibliography: A Preliminary Checklist for 1801–1819 (22 vols.; New York, 1958–66). description ends 24535). The address was widely published in Federalist newspapers and appeared in the National Intelligencer on 11 and 13 Aug. 1812.
3. JM probably meant to refer to fifty-two-year-old Lady Isabella Hertford (1760–1834), wife of the second marquis of Hertford, an ardent Tory. Jonathan Russell’s 14 May dispatch to Monroe concerning the assassination of Perceval had raised the question of Lady Hertford’s influence. He explained: “No new arrangement of the ministry has yet been effected—and every thing remains in doubt and darkness on this subject.… Lady Hertford, the Madame Pompadour of this court, is said to be opposed to the employment of the Marquess Wellesley as well as of the members of the opposition.… The Prince is undecided.” Possibly JM had confused Lady Hertford with fifty-six-year-old Maria Anne Fitzherbert (1756–1837), the prince regent’s sometime wife, who by 1812 had little contact and no influence with him (Russell to Monroe, 14 May 1812 [DNA: RG 59, DD, Great Britain]; M. J. Levy, The Mistresses of King George IV [London, 1996], pp. 128–51; W. H. Wilkins, Mrs. Fitzherbert and George IV [London, 1906], pp. 311–14, 328).