James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Daniel Parker, 5 September 1813

From Daniel Parker

Sunday Morning Sept. 5th. 1813.

D. Parker has the honor to report to the President of the U.States, that on receiving from the Secretary of State the letters of Governors Shelby, Mitchell & Blount with the endorsed memda. of the President1 he presented to the Secretary of State an order of Genl. Harrison which is published in the newspapers, & has not been received at the War office in any other shape, dated August 10h. in which the Genl. states that he shall improve the first opportunity to dismiss a number of the different corps now in service.2

On examining that order the Secy of State deemed it unnecessary to write to Governor Shelby untill he should see & consult the President further on the subject.

A letter was prepared to Genl. Pinckney corresponding with the instruction of the President & shown to the Secy of State.3 The letter has not been sent. The Secretary of State informed Mr. P. that he would write to the Govr. of Georgia to take the command of the troops ordered for the expedition against the hostile Creek Indians. Twenty thousand dollars have been remitted to the contractor in that quarter to meet the requisitions of the Govr. of Georgia for supplies to the militia—and twenty thousand dollars have been remitted to Governor Mitchell for Quartermaster’s and other supplies.

Mr. Parker has sent to the Govr. copies of the contracts with a copy of the order for the 3d U.S. Infantry to march to Fort Stoddart to cooperate against the hostile Indians with information relative to common details having understood from the Secy of State that all necessary instructions would be given to the Govr. by him.4

Letters have this moment been received from Governor Mitchell & Colonel Hawkins which are enclosed for the further information of the President.5 Mr. Parker will inform the Secretary of War that those letters relate to the expedition against the hostile Indians and have been refered to the President. He will also inform the Secretary of War that the Secy of State has this morning left the City & will see & consult the President relative to further orders to Governor Shelby which he presumes will be given by the President should any be deemed necessary.

Except these subjects Mr. Parker is not apprised of anything of sufficient importance to require the immediate attention of the President.

RC (DNA: RG 59, ML). For enclosures, see n. 5.

1For Isaac Shelby’s 1 Aug. 1813 letter to John Armstrong and JM’s notes on it, see Parker to JM, 20 Aug. 1813 (second letter), n. 1, and Notes on Kentucky Volunteers, 23 Aug. 1813. Parker may also have referred to Willie Blount’s letters to Armstrong of 30 July and 1 Aug. 1813 (see JM to Parker, ca. 18 Aug. 1813, n. 2).

2Maj. Gen. William Henry Harrison’s 10 Aug. 1813 general order, of which the War Department received a broadside copy, dismissed the volunteer light dragoons serving under Capt. William Garrard ten days before the expiration of their term, with Harrison’s commendation of their service (DNA: RG 94, Letters Received, filed under “Garrard”).

3For JM’s instructions regarding Maj. Gen. Thomas Pinckney, see JM to Parker, ca. 1 Sept. 1813.

4Parker to David B. Mitchell, 5 Sept. 1813 (DNA: RG 107, LSMA).

5JM’s letter to Armstrong of 8 Sept. 1813 suggests that Parker enclosed letters to Armstrong from Benjamin Hawkins, 23 Aug. 1813 (DNA: RG 46, Executive Proceedings, Indian Relations, 13B-C1; printed in ASP description begins American State Papers: Documents, Legislative and Executive, of the Congress of the United States … (38 vols.; Washington, 1832–61). description ends , Indian Affairs, 1:851–52), and David B. Mitchell, 24 Aug. 1813 (DNA: RG 107, LRRS, M-206:7). Hawkins forwarded extracts of correspondence between himself and Mitchell dated 9, 17, and 19 Aug. 1813 (DNA: RG 107, LRRS, M-206:7) to support his contention that Mitchell had “usurp[ed] all authority of the General Government” by promising military aid to the friendly Creeks rather than leaving such dealings to Hawkins as federal Indian agent. He described his own attempts to encourage the friendly Creeks’ campaign against their hostile counterparts, and declared that he intended to lead their attacks on hostile villages and would have done so “ere now, had not the promise of aid, gratis, paralyzed their efforts.” Hawkins also relayed rumors that Tecumseh planned to join the hostile Creeks and that the Spanish government had promised to provide more arms and ammunition for the Indians’ war against the United States. In his 24 Aug. letter to Armstrong, Mitchell reported that he had received a letter from Willie Blount stating that Blount would not call out Tennessee militia against the hostile Creeks until he received a “specific and distinct order from the War Department,” and suggesting a rendezvous location for the Tennessee and Georgia troops that Mitchell considered unsuitable. Convinced that Georgia would have to fight the hostile Creeks on its own, Mitchell had increased the number of Georgia troops to 2,500, ordered them to meet at Fort Hawkins, and advanced his own money to provide them with supplies.

Index Entries