George Washington Papers
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From George Washington to the United States Senate, 31 October 1791

To the United States Senate

United States [Philadelphia], October 31st 1791.

Gentlemen of the Senate,

Certain Offices having become vacant, since your last Session, by the death, resignation or appointment to other Offices, of those who held them, I have, in pursuance of the power vested in me by the Constitution, appointed the following persons to fill these vacancies—vizt.

Thomas Johnson, of Maryland, one of the Associate Justices of the Supreme Court, vice John Rutledge, resigned.

William Lewis, District Judge of Pennsylvania, vice Francis Hopkinson, deceased.

William Rawle, Attorney for the United States in the Pennsylvania District, vice William Lewis, appointed a Judge.

Mathew Clarkson, Marshal of the New York District, vice William Smith, appointed Supervisor of said District.1

John Brooks, Marshal of the Massachusetts District, vice Jonathan Jackson, appointed Inspector of one of the Surveys within said District.

David Meade Randolph, Marshal of the Virginia District, vice Edward Carrington, appointed Supervisor of said District.

Alexander Campbell, Attorney for the United States in the Virginia District, vice William Nelson Junr resigned.

Oliver Wolcot Junr Comptroller of the Treasury, vice Nicholas Eveleigh, deceased.

Timothy Pickering, Post-master-General, vice Samuel Osgood, resigned.

Isaac Holmes, Collector of the Port of Charleston in South Carolina, vice George Abbot Hall, deceased.

Josiah Murdaugh, Surveyor of the Port of Hartford in North Carolina, vice Joshua Skinner Junr son of William, deceased.

The following promotions and appointments in the Troops in the service of the United States, have likewise taken place since your last Session.2

First Regiment.
Promoted { William Hersey Captain vice McCurdy resigned.
Robert Thompson Lieutenant vice Hersey promoted.
Jacob Melcher Lieutenant vice Seayres resigned.
Appointed { William H. Harrison Ensign vice Thompson promoted.
Hastings Mark Ensign vice Heth promoted.
John Van Hoesen Huyck Ensign vice Melcher promoted.
Appointed James Wilkinson, Leuitt Colonel vice Doughty declined.
Second Regiment.
Promoted { Samuel Newman Captain vice Pray declined.
Thomas Huges Captain vice Sayles declined.
Jonathan Haskell Captain vice Freeman declined.
Martin Brimmer Sohier, Lieutenant, vice Newman, appointed
John Heth Lieutenant vice Rickard declined.
Cornelius Lyman, Lieutenant vice Higginson, declined.
Joseph Dickinson Lieutenant vice Huger declined.
Edward Miller Leuitenant, vice Sherman, resigned.
Appointed { John Tillinghast Ensign vice George declined.
Daniel Tilton Junr Ensign vice Gilman, declined.
Samuel Andrews Ensign vice Pierce declined.
John Bird Ensign, vice Dickinson, appointed
Micah McDonough, Ensign, vice Duff declined.
William Balch Ensign vice Sohier, appointed
John Sullivan Junr Ensign vice Edwards, resigned.3
George Demelar Ensign vice Miller, promoted.
John Elliot Surgeon vice Eustis declined.
Elijah Tisdale Surgeon’s vice Sumner declined.
Appointed Staats Morris Lieutenant vice Ernest resigned

As these appointments will all necessarily expire at the end of your present Session, I nominate the foregoing persons to fill the Offices annexed to their names respectively.

I likewise nominate Andrew Barratt to be Supervisor of the District of Delaware, vice Henry Latimer, who has resigned his appointment.

Go: Washington

DS, DNA: RG 46, Second Congress, 1791–1793, Records of Executive Proceedings, President’s Messages—Executive Nominations; LB, DLC:GW. A later hand marked a “c” to the right of each appointment, probably to signify Senate concurrence.

1Matthew Clarkson sent his resignation to GW on 22 Mar. 1792 (see Tobias Lear to Clarkson, 29 Mar. 1792, n.1).

2Earlier this day Henry Knox sent GW from the War Department a “list of Promotions and Appointments in the troops in the service of the United States, since the 4th March 1791,” which provided the dates of the resignations, promotions, and declinations listed in this message (DLC:GW).

3A later hand inserted “postponed” after Sullivan, Demelar, and Tisdale’s lines. After Tobias Lear delivered this message on 1 Nov., the Senate ordered it to “lie for consideration.” On 2 Nov. it postponed further consideration of the nominations until 7 Nov., when the Senate approved all the nominations except those of McDonough, Balch, Demelar, and Tisdale, consideration of which was again postponed. Lear notified Thomas Jefferson and Knox the next day of the civil and military appointments that were made, in order that commissions might be issued to the officers, and he requested Knox to provide “some of the Senators such information as might be necessary, after having ascertaind that the postponemt proceeded” from want of the same (Lear memoranda, 8 Nov., both DLC:GW). The Senate approved Tisdale’s nomination on 14 Nov., and McDonough, Balch, and Demelar’s on 15 Nov. (Executive Journal, description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States of America: From the commencement of the First, to the termination of the Nineteenth Congress. Vol. 1. Washington, D.C., 1828. description ends 1:85–87, 88, 89). Lear informed Knox of these four appointments on 17 Nov. (DLC:GW).

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