James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Josef Yznardy, 10 June 1807

Cadiz 10th. June 1807.


Continuing without Letters & instructions from ⟨you,⟩ the object of the present will be to enclose the Bond of responsibility of my managements ⟨which is⟩ signed, although I should consider it of no use for three powerfull reasons. First, having ⟨giv⟩en innumerable proofs of my integrity, Zeal, maturity and honorable proceedings for the space of ⟨thi⟩rteen Years that the office is under my care, Second, because I will be obliged to abandon it; ⟨fa⟩tigued of the many, many insults suffer’d during said period, And no redress, And the last ⟨   ⟩ the dishonor of not paying $1200, offer’d my Agent on Mr. Price on accompt of $3354 57/ 100 ⟨owed⟩ me as P account duly forwarded in the year 1804, besides the disbursements I have made since said ⟨   ⟩, for which reason said Mr. Price protested my draft, and I was obliged to ⟨reappay⟩ it here with ⟨   ⟩ PCent damages. I am most positive that no person of the least Knowledge or Sense will ⟨beli⟩eve that a Government of such a high respectability, rectitude and consequence as that of ⟨the⟩ United States, can be capable of acting in such a manner with an ancient officer, and who ⟨on a⟩ll occations so generously oppened his purse infavor of the individuals of the nation he ⟨rep⟩resents as it does towards me. And why. Because Mr. Robert Smith says that my Son ⟨Jose⟩ph is owing his Department. Pray what have I to do with the proceedings of my Sons whom ⟨   ⟩ this long time separated from me; my Son Joseph assures that instead of being a Debtor ⟨he is⟩ a Creditor, but let it be how it will, was the Debt contracted acting as Consul, and tho’ ⟨that w⟩as the case did he act under my Bond. By no means. What confidence can an Officer merit, ⟨if⟩ his Government with not trust him Twelve hundred Dollars. What reason ⟨or jus⟩tice can there be for the Chargé d’Affaires at Madrid, refusing paying my Expenditures ⟨after⟩ the Departure of Mr. Pinckney. With what Justice has a Navy Agent been ⟨app⟩ointed, a contentious and a fomentor of false anonymous calumnys against me and my ⟨   ⟩t, and which are belyed by my Letters to him and which I direct to you separately. ⟨S⟩ay Sir is this the reward merited for my Zeal, honorable proceedings & ⟨stri⟩ct compliance during thirteen Years, and which have been approved by General Washington and Your predecessors. What reason ⟨or jus⟩tice can there be, to blame me for what happens and passes at Algesiras, ⟨having⟩ repeatedly represented the necessity of an Agent there Since the beginning of ⟨the⟩ War, and notwithstanding I have approved and confirmed the appointment given ⟨to⟩ Mr. Porrall by Charles Stewart Commr. of the U. S. Brig Siren, who I assure ⟨co⟩mplys better than I imagined as Messrs. Erving & Young can confirm, altho’ without a Salary or the least benefit (as Mr. Meade has established a Clerk there in opposition) And they complain of him The Consul at Cadiz is the Spit th⟨at⟩ bears the Meat for others to eat it, and besides they will have him pay the fair. ⟨On⟩ Paper and Postage that unfortunate Porral spends at least P Annum One Hund⟨red⟩ Dollars, And still they complain of him, who harrassed by me applied to M⟨r.⟩ Young complaining that a number of Captains obtaining their freights & Vessells ent⟨er⟩ no Protest or appeal. He was replied that with the appeals funds should be sent ⟨to⟩ defray the expences, besides a Security of 5% Commission on the value of Vessell ⟨&⟩ Cargo if freed & 2 1/ 2 PCent on the same if condemned. What reason or Justice can there be for advancing money for a Commission of 5% & without Knowing when ⟨it⟩ will be refunded, when it can be employed at a premium of 12 or 14 % P annu⟨m.⟩ Mr. Young acts wisely in advancing his money to loose it, as I have done and ⟨   ⟩ is still disputed, but in this case what am I to do, and why should I suffer injuries ⟨by⟩ false anonymous publications, without being defended, nor paid by the Governmen⟨t⟩ I have so honorably served during thirteen Years, without the lea⟨st⟩ bl⟨e⟩mish or Stain in my Private or Public Character; as I defy any Morta⟨l⟩ whatsoever of proving the contrary; the only persons who have a right I be⟨lieve⟩ to complain in case they do not meet Quick dispatch, attention and regular ⟨   ⟩ are the Masters of our Vessels, but I have proved under their Signat⟨ures⟩ that they are in every respect pleased; therefore I am surprized that noti⟨ce⟩ should be given to false anonymous libels. If it is Sir your desire and ⟨that⟩ of the other Secretarys that I should leave the Office, be so Kind to order at s⟨ame⟩ time to refund me of my just and legal Expenditures, which when complied wi⟨th⟩ I will leave an office that has given so much trouble, sorrow & loss of Money; a⟨s⟩ it would not be just & regular that after thirteen Years of honorable Serv⟨ice⟩ I should loose my time publishing the wrongs that I have Suffered.

Notwithstanding of what I had the pleasure of informing you under da⟨te of⟩ the 11th. ulto. (Copy herewith) I now have to advise you that the Deputys of ⟨the⟩ Board of Health in ameeting held today, have determined that during the s⟨ummer⟩ Months no Vessell from the U. S. will be permitted to unload untill the 40ne. of forty ⟨da⟩ys is expired, although provided with clean Bills of Health duly Certified by the ⟨Spa⟩nish Consuls; and as no redress can be obtained here, I have immediately acquainted Mr. Erving at Madrid of the novelty that he may try and obtain redress there; of course ⟨the⟩ little trade actualy carried on with them states will suffer considerably; although no ⟨   ⟩ or pains on my part is wanting to favor the same. Spanish Troops to the ⟨am⟩ount of 15 thousand Men are marching for France. Four or five compleat Regiments ⟨ha⟩ve already entered Bayonne; it is reported by some they are to Garrison Hanover, and ⟨o⟩thers to remain in France, their real destination not Known. With Sentiments of high Consideration, I have the honor to be very Respectfully Sir, Your most obedt. hble Servant

Josef Yznardy

25th. June 1807.

⟨P.⟩ S. Fearing that the sundry real proofs remitted you ⟨of my⟩ exact and Zealous compliance, as well as that of my ⟨agen⟩t Mr. McCann with the office under our care, might has miscarried, I trouble you ⟨with⟩ Copies that you as well as the other Gentlemen in Adm.On may be informed thereof, ⟨permi⟩tting me at same time to ask you Sir, if the man that presents such convincing ⟨let⟩ters is deserving to be baffled about in the Public Papers as I am and not defended ⟨by the⟩ Governmt. he represents. Certainly it is very hard, but I have all hopes in yours ⟨and the o⟩ther Members rectitudes; that I will be defended as I believe I deserves by recieving ⟨com⟩petent acknowledgements of my faithfull compliance & services.

DNA: RG 59—CD—Consular Despatches, Cadiz.

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