George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Alexander Hamilton, 21 March 1794

From Alexander Hamilton

Treasury Depart. Mar: 21st 1794.


A law having passed to inable the President to cause a loan to be made in aid of the current receipts from the Public revenues, it is urgent that measures should be taken without delay for carrying it into effect.1

The enclosed statement shews the probable situation of the Treasury to the end of the ensuing quarter as far as materials are now possessed and manifests the necessity of an immediate aid by Loan.2

I therefore submit to the President the draft of a Power in the usual form to authorise the making of the Loan.3 With perfect respect &c.

Alexander Hamilton. Secy of the Treasy


1The legislation recently passed was “An Act authorizing a Loan of one million of Dollars,” 20 March 1794 (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 . 1:345).

2The enclosed statement (DLC:GW) reads:

“Probable State of Cash up to the 1. July 1794.

Treasury Department March 21. 1794.

Probable demands on the Treasury to the first of July 1794—Vizt.    
For the Departmt of War by estimation     400,000
For the payment of foreign officers     127,474.75.
For sums informally advanced by the bank of the U.S. for the public service for want of Appropriation.      99,543.05.
For bills purchased & to be purchased to remit to Amsterdam for payments of interest & instalment falling due on the foreign debt to the 1. July 94.     784,560.
For the last instalment of a loan of 800,000 dollars of the bank of the U.S. obtained pursuant to an Act of the last Session     200,000
For two quarters Interest on the public debt payable within the U. States   1,094,000.
Amount of Civil List for two quarters     256,360.
  Dollars 2,961,937.80
Amount of Cash in the several banks per Treasurers return of 7 Mar. 1794     674,621.68.
Amount of Cash in the hands of the several Collectors of the Customs & Supervisors per abstract of returns rendered, dated 7 Mar. ’94     130,726.29.
Amount of sums receivable for duties on Imports & tonnage in the months of march, april May & June per abstract of returns of bonds made up the 7. of March 1794     806,307.31.
Amount of additional return since received from the Custom house of New York      60,877.57.
Sums receivable from the duties on Imports & Tonnage of distilled Spirits not ascertainable by reason of deficient returns ⟨&⟩ by estimation     300,000.
Deficiency of Cash towards answering the probable demands on the Treasury     989,404.95
  Dolls 2,961,937.80

Alexander Hamilton”

3The enclosed draft has not been identified, but the authorization that GW returned to Hamilton on 22 March reads: “For carrying into execution the provisions of the Act of the twentieth day of this present month, whereby the President of the United States is authorised & empowered to borrow a certain sum of money on the credit of the United States.

“I do hereby authorise you the said Secretary of the Treasury in the name and on the credit of the United States to borrow of the bank of the United States, or of any other body or bodies politic, person or persons whomsoever a Sum not exceeding one million of dollars, at any interest not exceeding five per centum per annum; and to enter into such agreements for the reimbursement thereof as shall be needful & proper; hereby promising to ratify whatever you shall lawfully do in the premises.

“In testimony whereof I have here unto subscribed my hand at the City of Philada the 22d day of March 1794” (LB, DLC:GW).

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