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Mr. Monroe, Secretary of State, to Mr. Steele, collector.


July 18, 1811. SIR: There is some reason to apprehend that the owners of the French privateer, the Diligence, are taking steps for the arming and equipping her for sea. As it is improper that French vessels should be armed within the United States, I have to request that you will be particularly attentive to this vessel, to prevent such a measure being carried into effect. I have, &c.,

JAMES MONROE. JOHN STEELE, Esq., &c., Philadelphia.

(2) *Mr. Monroe, Secretary of State, to the collector of Charleston.


September 19, 1811. SIR: Having been recently informed that a British ship, a prize to the French privateer Duke of Dantzig, Arregnandier, commander, has been for some months past lying in the port of Charleston, I request you to state to me, with as little delay as possible, and with accuracy, the particular circumstances connected with the arrival and detention of this British vessel in the waters of the United States.

You will also be pleased to inform me whether there have occurred within your district any cases of vessels apparently fitted out as mer. chant ships, which have, on quitting the American shores, commenced acting as privateers, under French commissions, against the British trade. I am, &c.,

JAMES MONROE. the COLLECTOR of the Port of Charleston.

Mr. Monroe, Secretary of State, to Mr. Dallas, district attorney.


November 4, 1811. SIR: I have had the honor of receiving your letter of the 20th ultimo, including a decision of the circuit court for the district of Pennsylvania, in the case of the French public vessel Exchange, by which the decision of the district court is reversed.

As this case is a very important one, it is proper that it should be carried before the highest judicial tribunal of the United States. The President requests, therefore, that you will take the steps necessary for that purpose.

Your own judgment and knowledge will suggest those which may be taken with the least compromitment of the Government. I have, &c.,

JAMES MONROE. [3] *ALEXANDER J. DALLAS, Esq., Philadelphia.

Mr. Monroe, Secretary of State, to Governor Claiborne.


December 5, 1811. SIR: I have the honor to transmit to you a copy of a letter from Mr.

Onis, from which it would appear that he had received informa[4] tion *that some Frenchmen at New Orleans had it in view to armı

and equip at that place a vessel, for the purpose of surprising the port of Baracoa, in the island of Cuba, plundering its inhabitants, and laying waste the town."

Such an equipment in the port of New Orleans would be highly im. proper, and the President does not doubt that you will take effectual measures to prevent it, if, on inquiry, you find there is any foundation for the report which has reached Mr. Onis. I am, sir, &c.,


Mr. Monroe, Secretary of State, to the gorernor of Tennesset.


September 3, 1812 SIR: Intelligence has been received that some of the citizens of your State are collecting in the county of Giles, with the intention to make an incursion into some of the provinces of Spain, to join the revolutionary party in a contest against the existing government. As the United States are at peace with Spain, and such a movement is prohib

ited by law under severe penalties, the President has instructed [5] me to communicate to your excellency this intelligence, with

a request that you would investigate its truth, and, should it appear to be well founded, give it all discountenance in your power. It is presumed that when the parties concerned in this proceeding are apprised of the sense of their Government, and, more especially, of the le gal prohibition and penalties attached to it, they will not hesitate to decline it.


Mr. Monroe, Secretary of State, to Governor Howard.


September 3, 1812. SIR: Your letter of the 21st of June, with a paper addressed to you by J. McClanaham, for himself and in behalf of Reuben Smith and

James Patterson, inhabitants of Louisiana, was received here while I was absent on a visit to Virginia, or it would have been sooner attended to.

It appears by this communication that its authors intend to visit some of the provinces of Spain, and, as may be inferred from the recital it gives of the circumstances attending a former journey there, and the

motives assigned for the purposed one, their object may be, and [6] probably is, of an unfriendly nature. It is in the latter 'view

that the subject is interesting, and on which in that view I have to communicate to you the sentiments of the President.

The United States are at peace with Spain. The convulsions of the Spanish monarchy have produced no effect on this policy toward her. The disorganized condition of that power and its embarrassments have afforded motives rather to forbear to press claims of right founded on positive wrongs, than to seek redress by force, which under other circumstances might bave been done.

If the projected visit contemplates any measure of hostility to Spain, it is repugnant to the policy of the United States, and is also positively prohibited by law. I have, therefore, to request that you will make this known to the parties concerned, and give all the discountenance in your power to any measure which may possibly tend eventually to assume a hostile cbaracter.


0 * Jr. Monroe, Secretary of State, to the gorernors of Louisiana and of the Mississippi Territory, and to Tully Robinson, esq.


February 14, 1814. Sirs: It is understood that Dr. John Robinson, who was employed some time past, on the recommendation of the late General Pike, in making a friendly communication to the governor of the internal provinces of New Spain, is now engaged, with others, in raising troops to make a hostile incursion into those provinces.

These acts of Dr. Robinson, illegal 'in themselves, are the more reprehensible from the consideration that, as he was some time since in the service of this Government, it may be inferred that he is so still, and that these measures are taken under its sanction. I therefore hasten to inform you that he has at this time no employment whatever under the Government, nor has he had since his return last year from the internal provinces of New Spain; and that the measures imputed to him are repugnant to the views of the Government, and contrary to law. While at peace with Spain, whatever may be the injuries heretofore received from her government, it is highly improper for any of the citizens of the United States to violate that relation. The President, therefore, expects that you will take the necessary and proper steps to prevent any measures of the kind imputed to Dr. Robinson from being carried into effect.


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