George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Edmund Randolph, 10 February 1794

From Edmund Randolph

Philadelphia february 10. 1794

Sir

The bill, drawn by Edward Church on the Secretary of State and accepted by me, amounts to one hundred and fifty pounds sterling.1 The Secretary of the Treasury is disinclined to pay it out of the monies in his hands. I must therefore request you to give an order for the payment, out of the contingent fund at your disposal.2 The form of the Order may be somewhat in this shape. “The President of the U.S. desires the Secretary of the Treasury to cause a bill of exchange, drawn at Lisbon, on the 19th of October 1793 for one hundred and fifty pounds sterling, by Edward Church in favor of Jacob Dohrman & comp.; and accepted by the secretary of State in behalf of his department on the 10th of January 1794, to be adjusted and paid out of the contingent fund at his disposal. If the forms of the Treasury department require any further document from the President, he wishes it to be prepared and sent to him for his signature.”3 I have the honor, sir, to be with the highest respect yr mo. ob. serv.

Edm: Randolph

ALS, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters; LB, DNA: RG 59, GW’s Correspondence with His Secretaries of State; LB, DNA: RG 59, Domestic Letters.

1Edward Church, the U.S. consul at the Portugese port of Lisbon, reported in his first letter to former secretary of state Thomas Jefferson of 22 Oct. 1793 that he had drawn a bill for £150 Sterling in favor of the mercantile firm of Jacob Dohrman and Company for the charter of a vessel to sail from Lisbon to New York City. This was done in order to procure a means for sending diplomatic dispatches to Jefferson (Jefferson Papers description begins Julian P. Boyd et al., eds. The Papers of Thomas Jefferson. 40 vols. to date. Princeton, N.J., 1950—. description ends , 27:262–64). Jefferson submitted this letter and its enclosures to GW on 23 Dec. 1793 (JPP description begins Dorothy Twohig, ed. The Journal of the Proceedings of the President, 1793–1797. Charlottesville, Va., 1981. description ends , 272).

2Section 3 of “An Act making appropriations for the support of government for the year one thousand seven hundred and ninety,” 26 March 1790, authorized the president “to draw from the treasury a sum not exceeding ten thousand dollars, for the purpose of defraying the contingent charges of government” (Stat description begins Richard Peters, ed. The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America, from the Organization of the Government in 1789, to March 3, 1845 . . .. 8 vols. Boston, 1845-67. description ends . 1:105).

3On this same date, GW directed Alexander Hamilton to pay this bill (JPP description begins Dorothy Twohig, ed. The Journal of the Proceedings of the President, 1793–1797. Charlottesville, Va., 1981. description ends , 283).

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