James Madison Papers

To James Madison from James Monroe, 7 June 1813

From James Monroe

Department of State, June 7. 1813.

The Secretary of State, to whom was referred the Resolution of the Senate of the 3rd. Instant, requesting the President to cause to be laid before the Senate the Correspondence which may have passed between the United States and the King of Sweden respecting the Interchange of Public Ministers, has the Honor to report to the President, that no direct correspondence has taken place on the subject.

In reference to the object of the Resolution, the Secretary of State submits several extracts of letters from Mr. Speyer, Consul of the United States at Stockholm, and a letter from Mr. Beasley, Commissary of Prisoners at London, by which the wishes and intentions of the Swedish Government in relation to the Interchange of Ministers have been made known to this Department.1 Respectfully submitted.

Jas. Monroe

RC and enclosures (DNA: RG 46, Executive Proceedings, Foreign Relations, 13B-B2). JM transmitted the report to the Senate on the same day (ibid.; printed in Senate Exec. Proceedings description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States of America (3 vols.; Washington, 1828). description ends , 2:351). For enclosures, see n. 1.

1Monroe enclosed Reuben G. Beasley’s letter to him of 12 Dec. 1812 (4 pp.) stating that Sweden had “invariably manifested the most friendly disposition towards the United States,” and had even provided protective convoys for American ships, of which practice Lord Castlereagh had reportedly complained to the recently appointed Swedish minister to the United States, Johan Albert von Kantzow. The Swedish government therefore felt “considerable dissatisfaction” that the United States had not sent a minister to their country. Observing that “The crown prince [Bernadotte] is fond of Court splendor; the Government is poor; and … the example of Denmark is immediately before it,” Beasley hinted that Sweden might start cooperating with Great Britain if that mark of respect was not shown to it. The enclosed extracts from John Speyer’s letters to Monroe of 18 Jan., 21 Jan., 31 Mar., 18 May, and 25 Sept. 1812 (5 pp.) reported Kantzow’s appointment, his instructions to inform the British government, while he was in London, that the Swedish Prince Royal wished “to see a good understanding restored with the United States,” and Speyer’s decision not to present his commission as U.S. consul in Stockholm for fear that “it might be ungraciously received here after their notification of the appointment of a Minister.”

Index Entries