James Madison Papers

John J. Crittenden to James Madison, 5 March 1830

Frankfort March 5th 1830.


Upon the bond, given by Bell & Tapscott to yourself & Mrs Willis, & which was some time since placed in my hands for collection, I instituted suits in our Federal court. The death of Tapscott rendered it necessary to bring seperate suits against his executrix, & the surviving obligor, Bell, as they could not lawfully be joined in one action— Judgments were obtained against both, & in both cases executions were issued & proved ineffectual— Bell having removed, with his property, & Mrs Tapscott having as I was informed so disposed of hers as to evade the process of the law—In this State of case, Mr John H Lee acting as your agent, determined, with my advice, to commence proceedings in the court of chancery in the county where he lives, & where the land you sold lies, to subject that & such other property of the parties as could be reached, to sale for the satisfaction of the judgments obtained at law— I forwarded to him during the last year, the papers necessary for the institution of such proceedings, & have no doubt they are now in progress. My professional services in your case have thus been terminated, & I can only regret that they were not more available to you.

I became the security for yourself & Mrs Willis in the two suits in the Federal Court, for the payment of costs, & have paid the whole amount of costs, being $37.04, for which I hold the fee bills of the clerk & Marshall, & will transmit them to you if desired. My fee for the two cases is $40, which added to the costs paid by me makes a total of $77.04— Please to remit it to me at your convenience. I have the honor to be with great respect &c yr’s &c

J. J. Crittenden

RC (DLC). Docketed by JM.

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