James Madison Papers

To James Madison from James Monroe, 9 August 1813

From James Monroe

Washington Augt. 9. 1813

Dear Sir

The day being unfavorable I think it probable you will not get further than occoquan this evening.

Mr Graham has seen Mr Wyer this morning, at my request, to ascertain, whether & when he can set out with our despatches for Russia, & finds that he is altogether destitute of the means.1 He proposes to take a sum not exceeding 1000. dolrs on loan, to be replac’d, with Mr Harris in Russia, where we want money for destitute seamen. I fear, that if a special messenger is not chargd with our despatches, and they are left to chance, especially now that it is possible, that the mediation is accepted, and any extry delay shod. occur, before their receit, it will be a cause of censure. I wish you to think on this subject & give me instructions, as soon as convenient. With great respect & esteem sincerely yours

Jas Monroe

RC (DLC: Rives Collection, Madison Papers).

1JM nominated Edward Wyer as U.S. consul at Riga on 26 July 1813, and the Senate confirmed the appointment the following day. Wyer sailed from Boston on a Swedish ship in September 1813 but was removed from the ship and detained by the British before returning to Boston the same month. In February 1814 he attempted to join Henry Clay and Jonathan Russell on the John Adams, bound from New York for Gothenburg, but lacking instructions from the Navy Department, Capt. Samuel Angus refused him passage. Relating these events to Monroe, Clay opined that it was just as well: “The public interest I am persuaded will not suffer by his absence from Riga; and if one half of what I have heard from a respectable source is true his Commission ought to be instantly revoked” (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 , 2:397, 400; Preston, A Comprehensive Catalogue of the Correspondence of Monroe, 1:361, 363; Hopkins et al., Papers of Henry Clay, 1:869–70, 875).

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