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the Senate, observing at the same time, that the period of your departure cant be settled until we get our administration together, and may perhaps be delayed till we receive the ratification of the Senate, which would probably be four months; consequently, the commission would not be made out before then. This will give you ample time to make your departure convenient. In hopes of hearing from you as speedily as you can form your resolution, and hoping it will be favorable, I tender you my respectful and affectionate salutations.
TO THOMAS LOMAX, ESQ.
WASHINGTON, Feb. 25, 1801.
DEAR SIR,-Your favor of the 5th came to hand on the 20th, and I have but time to acknowledge it under the present pressure of business. I recognize in it those sentiments of virtue and patriotism which you have ever manifested. The suspension of public opinion from the 11th to the 17th, the alarm into which it threw all the patriotic part of the federalists, the danger of the dissolution of our Union, and unknown consequences of that, brought over the great body of them to wish with anxiety and solicitation for a choice to which they had before been strenuously opposed. In this state of mind they separated from their congressional leaders, and came over to us; and the manner in which the last ballot was given, has drawn a fixed line of separation between them and their leaders. When the election took effect, it was as the most desirable of events to them. This made it a thing of their choice, and finding themselves aggregated with us accordingly, they are in a state of mind to be consolidated with us, if no intemperate measures on our part revolt them again. I am persuaded that weeks of ill-judged conduct here, has strengthened us more than years of prudent and conciliatory administration could have done. If we can once more get social intercourse restored to its pristine harmony, I shall be
lieve we have not lived in vain; and that it may, by rallying them to true republican principles, which few of them had thrown off, I sanguinely hope. Accept assurances of the high esteem and respect of, dear Sir, your friend and servant.
TO GENTLEMEN OF THE SENATE.
To give the usual opportunity of appointing a President pro tempore, I now propose to retire from the chair of the Senate; and, as the time is near at hand when the relations will cease which have for some time subsisted between this honorable house and myself, I beg leave before I withdraw, to return them my grateful thanks for all the instances of attention and respect with which they have been pleased to honor me. In the discharge of my functions here, it has been my conscientious endeavor to observe impartial justice, without regard to persons or subjects, and if I have failed in impressing this on the mind of the Senate, it will be to me a circumstance of the deepest regret. I may have erred at times-no doubt I have erred; this is the law of human nature. For honest errors, however, indulgence may be hoped. I owe to truth and justice at the same time to declare that the habits of order and decorum, which so strongly characterize the proceedings of the Senate, have rendered the umpirage of their President an office of little difficulty, that in times and on questions which have severely tried the sensibilities of the house, calm and temperate discussion has rarely been disturbed by departures from order.
Should the support which I have received from the Senate, in the performance of my duties here, attend me into the new station to which the public will has transferred me, I shall consider it as commencing under the happiest auspices.
With these expressions of my dutiful regard to the Senate, as a body, I ask leave to mingle my particular wishes for the health and happiness of the individuals who compose it, and to tender them my cordial and respectful adieus.
TO M. DE LA FAYETTE.
WASHINGTON, March 1, 1801. you the last year, During the earlier
MY DEAR FRIEND,-I received a letter from and it has been long since I wrote one to you.
part of the period it would never have got to your hands, and during the latter, such has been the state of politics on both sides of the water, that no communications were safe. Nevertheless, I have never ceased to cherish a sincere friendship for you, and to take a lively interest in your sufferings and losses. It would make me happy to learn that they are to have an end. We have passed through an awful scene in this country. The convulsion of Europe shook even us to our centre. A few hardy spirits stood firm to their post, and the ship has breasted the storm. The details of this cannot be put on paper. For the astonishing particulars I refer you to the bearer of this, Mr. Dorson, my friend, fully possessed of everything, as being a Member of Congress, and worthy of confidence. From him you must learn
what America is now, or was, and what it has been; for now I hope it is getting back to the state in which you knew it. I will only add that the storm we have passed through proves our vessel indestructible. I have heard with great concern of the delicacy of Mrs. de La Fayette's health, and with anxiety to learn that it is getting better. Having been at Monticello all the time your son was in America, I had not an opportunity of seeing him and of proving my friendship to one in whom I have an interest. Present the homage of my respects and attachment to Mrs. La Fayette, and accept yourself assurances of my constant and affectionate friendship.
P. S. March 18. This moment Mr. Pickon arrived, and delivered me your letter, of which he was the bearer.
TO THE PRESIDENT PRO TEMPORE OF THE SENATE.
WASHINGTON, March 2, 1801.
SIR, I beg leave through you to inform the Honorable the Senate of the United States, that I propose to take the oath which the Constitution prescribes to the President of the United States, before he enters on the execution of his office, on Wednesday, the 4th inst., at twelve o'clock, in the Senate chamber. I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, Sir, your most obedient, and most humble servant.
TO THE HONORABLE JOHN MARSHALL.
WASHINGTON, March 2, 1801.
I was desired two or three days ago to sign some sea letters, to be dated on or after the 4th of March, but in the meantime to be forwarded to the different ports; and I understood you would countersign them as the person appointed to perform the duties of Secretary of State, but that you thought a re-appointment, to be dated the 4th of March, would be necessary. I shall with pleasure sign such a re-appointment nunc pro tunc, if you can direct it to be made out, not being able to do it myself for want of a knowledge of the form.
I propose to take the oath or oaths of office as President of the United States, on Wednesday the 4th inst., at 12 o'clock, in the Senate chamber. May I hope the favor of your attendance to administer the oath? As the two Houses have notice of the hour, I presume a precise punctuality to it will be expected from me. I would pray you in the meantime to consider whether the oath prescribed in the Constitution be not the only one necessary to take? It seems to comprehend the substance of that prescribed by the Act of Congress to all officers, and it may be questionable whether the Legislature can require any new oath from the President. I do not know what has been done in this
heretofore; but I presume the oaths administered to my predecessors are recorded in the Secretary of State's office.
Not being yet provided with a private secretary, and needing some person on Wednesday to be the bearer of a message or messages to the Senate, I presume the chief clerk of the department of State might be employed with propriety. Permit me through you to ask the favor of his attendance on me to my lodgings on Wednesday, after I shall have been qualified.
I have the honor to be with great respect, Sir, your most obedient, humble servant.
TO THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.
WASHINGTON, March 3, 1801.
SIR, I beg leave through you to inform the Honorable the House of Representatives of the United States, that I shall take the oath which the Constitution prescribes to the President of the United States, before he enters on the execution of his office, on Wednesday, the 4th inst., at twelve o'clock, in the Senate chamber.
I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, Sir, your most obedient, and most humble servant.
TO JOHN DICKINSON.
WASHINGTON, March 6, 1801.
DEAR SIR,-No pleasure can exceed that which I received from reading your letter of the 21st ultimo. It was like the joy we expect in the mansions of the blessed, when received with the embraces of our forefathers, we shall be welcomed with their blessing as having done our part not unworthily of them. storm through which we have passed, has been tremendous indeed. The tough sides of our Argosie have been thoroughly