From Elbridge Gerry
Cambridge 21st Sepr 1813
I have received by the last Post the letters enclosed from Mr Carlton a member of the Council of this State whilst I was in the Chair, & from Mr Wood, a member of the House of Representatives of the UStates, recommending for Office Samuel Parker Esqr.1 Altho I have no recollection of this Gentleman, the opinions of those first mentioned would confirm my own in regard to him, they being uniformly decided republicans. The Revd Doctor Bentley, a determined friend of the existing Government, having addressed a letter to me on the subject of the treatment of our Prisoners, I enclose it for your consideration.2 This appears to be a subject which is of a serious import, & which requires prompt attention. Having implicit confidence in the correctness of your decisions, I have the honor to remain with the highest consideration & respect yours most sincerely
Enclosed is also Major Farley’s wish for office.3 He is a decided friend of the existing Government, & for that reason probably has been lately dismissed from the office of high sheriff for that County. He is a worthy man.
RC and enclosures (DLC). For enclosures, see nn. 1–3.
1. Gerry enclosed letters to him from Moses Carlton Jr., 10 Sept. 1813 (2 pp.), and Abiel Wood, 13 Sept. 1813 (1 p.), recommending Samuel Parker as collector of direct taxes for Lincoln County, Massachusetts. JM, however, nominated Ezekiel Thompson for that position in a message to the Senate dated 1 Apr. 1814, and the appointment was approved on 5 Apr. (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 , 2:521–23; U.S. Statutes at Large description begins The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America … (17 vols.; Boston, 1848–73). description ends , 3:22).
2. The enclosed letter from William Bentley to Gerry, 18 Sept. 1813 (1 p.), relayed a report sent to Bentley by John Mitchell, U.S. agent for prisoners at Halifax, stating that the British had transferred sixteen American prisoners to the local jail in retaliation for the U.S. seizure of several British citizens as “hostages” for captured Americans who had been sent to England. Mitchell wrote that the sixteen Americans were “lodged like Criminals! All in one small room, or rather Cell,” but were “in good Spirits & look to God & their Country.” On behalf of his friend Capt. John M. Morgan, one of the prisoners, Bentley asked that the U.S. government do all in its power to relieve them.
3. Gerry enclosed a letter from Robert Farley, 6 Sept. 1813 (1 p.), stating that Farley’s “friends in salem” had sent a letter to JM (not found) recommending Farley as collector of direct taxes for Essex County, Massachusetts. Farley asked whether, in light of the “treatment which [he had] recd—without cause,” it would be necessary for him to obtain additional recommendations. JM nominated Farley as assessor and Tristram Dalton as collector for Essex County in messages to the Senate dated 17 Jan. 1814, and both appointments were confirmed on 21 Jan. Dalton, however, resigned before 1 Oct. 1814, on which date JM nominated Farley to fill the position of collector. Senate confirmation followed on 3 Oct. (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 , 2:455, 458, 460, 531–32; U.S. Statutes at Large description begins The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America … (17 vols.; Boston, 1848–73). description ends , 3:22).