Writings of James Madison, Volume 2

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Author: James Madison

To Governor Claiborne.

VIRGINAIA, August 28, 1804.

SIR,—I have received your favor of the 12 and 14 of July. The continuance and conduct of the Spanish officers at New Orleans justly excite attention. In every view, it is desirable that these foreigners should be no longer in a situation to affront the authority of the United States, or to mingle, by their intrigues, in the affairs of your territory. The first of October will be an epoch which may be used for letting it be understood that their stay, so much beyond the right and the occasion for it, is not seen with approbation. The mode and measure of the intimation are left by the President to your discreet judgment. With Morales there may be less need of very delicate management; especially if he perseveres in retaining a title which, having belonged to a Spanish officer purely provincial, in Louisiana, seems to arraign the present jurisdiction of the United States.

You will soon receive from Mr. Granger blank commissions for offices within his Department. The President wishes you to sound the Marquis de Casa Calvo on the subject of a link of the chain of post offices within the contested territory, and, by friendly explanations, to obtain his concurrence in making such an establishment for mutual convenience by mutual consent; with an understanding, or, if preferred, an express declaration, that the measure is neither to strengthen nor weaken the rights of either nation. Should a post office within the limits possessed by Spain not be acquiesced in, it is thought best that it be waived for the present, leaving to the mail a mere passage, to which it may be presumed no opposition will be made.

By the last communications from Madrid, of June 12, it appears that the Spanish Government had imbibed the discontent expressed by the Marquis d’Yrujo at the act of Congress authorising a revenue district on the waters of the Mobile, &c., and that it manifested a backwardness to ratify the Convention, which had been ratified here in the very terms in which it was concluded on there. A knowledge of this ill humor may be useful in the course of your transactions, particularly those with the Spanish Functionaries.

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Chicago: James Madison Jr., "To Governor Claiborne.," Writings of James Madison, Volume 2 in James Madison, Letters and Other Writings of James Madison, 4 Vols. (Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott & Co.), P.203 Original Sources, accessed July 16, 2024, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4YS9235NBHZ6JWU.

MLA: Madison, James, Jr. "To Governor Claiborne." Writings of James Madison, Volume 2, in James Madison, Letters and Other Writings of James Madison, 4 Vols. (Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott & Co.), P.203, Original Sources. 16 Jul. 2024. http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4YS9235NBHZ6JWU.

Harvard: Madison, J, 'To Governor Claiborne.' in Writings of James Madison, Volume 2. cited in , James Madison, Letters and Other Writings of James Madison, 4 Vols. (Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott & Co.), P.203. Original Sources, retrieved 16 July 2024, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4YS9235NBHZ6JWU.