James Madison Papers

To James Madison from William Jones, 1 October 1813

From William Jones

Treasury Department Octor. 1st. 1813

Dear Sir

I herewith enclose a Tableau of the several Districts, candidates & persons recommending for appointments under the tax Laws, containing all the applications made to this time.1 I found Sir that the mere names would have afforded but a very partial mean of deciding as some of the letters are warm & decisive whilst others are cold and equivocal. I have therefore directed the whole of the letters to be arranged into Districts and severally numbered so as to be referred to with facility and you will receive them by this days mail as also a sufficient number of blank commissions.

I enclose also the letter of S H Smith Esqr and a memorandum of Mr Sheldons to show the importance of completing the appointmts both distant and near as far as may be practicable without delay.2

I most reluctantly intrude upon your retirement (so necessary for the perfect reestablishmt. of health) with these masses of papers, and regret on this occasion that my personal knowledge of the parties is so imperfect as to render my aid of comparatively but little importance to that which you would have derived from the Secretary himself. Recollecting however that Mr Coles is with you and that your extensive knowledge of the characters of prominent men throughout the union will lighten the labour and diminish the nec[e]ssity of particul⟨ar⟩ referrence I hope the inconvenience will not be found oppressive. With Most perfect esteem and Sincerity I am Dear Sir your Obdt Servt

W Jones

RC and enclosures (DNA: RG 59, ML). For surviving enclosures, see n. 2.

1Enclosure not found.

2The enclosed letter to Jones from Samuel Harrison Smith, 29 Sept. 1813 (2 pp.), stated that in order to enforce the new revenue laws, “Half a million of Stamps and one hundred thousand Licenses signed and stamped should be distributed through the Union previously to the 1st. day of January”; that the Post Office could safely handle only “three or four Reams” per day, and less as road conditions worsened in winter; that licenses could not be mailed until the collectors stated the type and number needed in their districts; and that it would be unwise to send stamps and licenses to collectors before they had accepted their appointments. Daniel Sheldon’s undated memo (1 p.) re-emphasized the large quantity of documents to be sent and the burden this task would place on the postal service.

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