James Madison Papers

To James Madison from William Smyth, 7 June 1815

Washington June 7th. 1815


When introduced to you this day by Docr. Blake I wished to have shown you my wound recd. at York & to have known whether it was possible to have procured some plan of support in my Cripled situation, but modest feeling prevented such a thing in company and personal communication with the President is not admisible or usual therefore allow me to state, I am without a trade, profession or property to live on, after suffering the privations of camp for three campaigns, two hard winters in the frozen lines of Canada & wounded in hazzarding my life for my Countrys honor, I am left out of the peace arrengt. to beg my bread while others who never fought any Battles or even suffered privations are retained & provided for. I handed a letter of recommendation & stated my wish to the Hr. Secretary of the Treasury & was praying some relif but have had no answer or promise when I may expect one; I would be glad to know if any thing can be expected now or even when congress acts I think with submission that wounded officers, who have sufferd in every respect and way should be provided for before men who have neither fought or even left their homes or sufferd even privations; any way, a number of such have been retained and otherwise provided with places, when they have done nothing & are rich & one who has requested indeed when left out. with all respect I have the honor to be Yr Obt h servt.

Wm. Smyth
late Capt. of R. Rgt.

I can still write a Better hand & have seen as much service & not as much disabled as Capt. Larrabee who is retained as an Ast. Inspector in the army such an appmt. would have suited me & I presume I am as fully qualified to execute its duties.

Some Civil appt. would be preferred if not too much writing as much of that would produce pain in the wounded arm.

DNA: RG 107—LRUS—Letters Received by the Secretary of War, Unregistered Series.

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