James Madison Papers

To James Madison from James McCally, 25 August 1812 (Abstract)

§ From James McCally

25 August 1812, Clarksburg. Encloses a copy of a Harrison County order “relative to a company of Cavalry which I have been ingaged in enlisting.”1 Describes the company as consisting of approximately fifty men and notes that it is prevented from increasing in size by the “oposition made by some disaffected Captains of the Cavalry & Rifle companies.” Proposes that if the company was “recognised by the president of the U. S. & the officers commissioned by him,” recruitment could proceed “with authority & the citizens Could not be deterred for volunteering.”

Relays the wish of the company to join the detachment under General Hull. Expresses concern that unless they are called into service and commissioned by JM, “the purposes for which the[y] have enlisted will have gone past & their assistence in this form lost to the Country.”2

RC and enclosure (DNA: RG 107, LRRS, M-400:6). RC 2 pp.; docketed as received in the War Department on 5 Sept. 1812. For enclosure, see n. 1.

1The enclosed court order (1 p.) noted that a company of cavalry had assembled to tender their services to the president. The court recommended James McCally to be captain, “also Jonathan Jackson 1st. Lieutenant, John Wilkinson 2nd. Lieutenant and David E Jackson Cornet” of this troop. At the foot of the page, the company officially tendered the services of these four officers, four sergeants, four corporals, and fifty-three privates.

2Filed with the letter is a slip of paper with a note in JM’s hand: “It wd seem best to send the Commissions in blank to be filled on the spot, so as to combine respect for the law with the choice of the Volunteers.” On 8 Sept. 1812 Eustis replied to McCally, forwarding blank commissions for officers and ordering the volunteer company to report at Point Pleasant to Brig. Gen. Joel Leftwich, who would march them to join the Northwest Army (DNA: RG 107, LSMA).

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