James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Donald Fraser Sr., 30 August 1817

From Donald Fraser Sr.

Newyork Augt. 30th. 1817.


Permit me to present, for the honour of Your acceptance, a copy of a few verses of mine; which, may afford you a few minutes’ amusement, at a leisure hour. For, triffles, light as air,1 may amuse a Philosopher, after profound reflection. I have the honour to be, very respectfully, Sir, Your Obdt. humble Servant

Donald Fraser Senr.

P. S. A recent anecdote. When the President of the U. S. Landed in this City, a Gent of veracity, then Standing upon the wharf; informed me that he heard two Captains of vesse[l]s, in conversation, A British & American. The former asked the latter, [“]who that Gent. was, whom the people were so eager to see?” The President of the U. S. was the reply of the latter. “Has he no Body-Guards?” “O Yes! Nine Millions of freemen, for, all the Citizens, are his Body-Guards.”

RC (NN). Enclosure not found.

1“Trifles light as air / Are to the jealious confirmations strong / As proofs of holy writ,” Shakespeare, Othello, 3.3.322–24 (Riverside description begins G. Blakemore Evans, ed., The Riverside Shakespeare (Boston, 1974). description ends ).

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