« AnteriorContinuar »
Let me hear from you by mail, as well as by the first good private conveyance, and believe me, with the best wishes for your prosperity and happiness, most truly,
Your friend and servant,
If you write in cypher ) [Hieroglyphics.] use the same word, viz: $ Mess— 0~^A
The last, though not the least worthy, is General John Adair. And the evidence as to him, is not the least conclusive. That he may not be thought in any manner slighted, that is also inserted; by way of shewing that the attorney might well have considered him a material witness—and even indictable, as he could not get his evidence. See the following letter, &.c.
My Dear Sir: I did not answer your letter by Taylor, but I did better; I procured him a pension of twenty dollars per month. I was to have introduced my friend Burr to you, but in this I failed by accident. He understands your merits, and reckons on you. Prepare to visit me, and I will tell you all. We must have a peep at the unknown world beyond me. I shall want a pair of strong carriage horses, at about 120 dollars each, young and sound, substantial, but not flashy. I am in health, and, in spite of the neglect of friends, and the shameful omissions of attornies, have this day given sir a damper.
Perdition overtake the Jew scoundrel; he had nearly destroyed me by a decree, of which I had no intimation, although it is almost seven years old. Enough for the present. Thine ever,
JA. WILKINSON. Rapids of Ohio, May 2Sth, 1805,
11 o'clock, A. M. I sail in an hour. Gen. Adair. Write me.
Private. Extract from General Adair's publication, \st of March, 1807— made at Washington city.
"So far as I know or believe of the intentions of Colonel Burr, (and my enemies will agree that I am not ignorant on this subject) they were to prepare and lead an expedition into Mexico, predicated on a war between the two governments; without a war, he knew he could do nothing." Again—
"I thought this object honourable, and worthy the attention of any man; but I was not engaged in it," &c.
Extracts from General Wilkinson's publication, dated New Orleans, April 17th, 1807: and referring to a previous publication of General Adair's, says it is not unanswerable, and shall be noticed in due time—at the present he publishes the statements of Doctor Claiborne, &c.
Extracts from Claiborne's statement.
"General John Adair and Colonel Burr, arrived in Nashville about the middle of December last, (1806) from Kentucky. I know not whether they came together; they lodged at the same house, and occupied, I understood, one room. They left Nashville in a few days of each other; Adair by land, and Colonel Burr by water."
(Signed) "THOS. A. CLAIBORNE." Extra it from the Affidavit of Jo. F. Carmichael.
"Mr. Ralston (one of Burr's party) opened his business with this deponent, stating that he had descended the Mississippi as far as New Madrid, in company with Colonel Burr, where he left him; that General Adair had, gone to New Orleans, by a circuitous route, and that his intention was to communicate with General Wilkinson, and return so as to meet them at my house (Bayou Pierre) about that time, (the 11th of January, 1807) if possible," &C. &c.
(Signed) "JO. F. CARMICHAEL.
"County of Orleans."
Extract from the affidavit of J. S. Smith.
"About the 25th of January, 1807, General Adair, (a prisoner of the United States then in my charge) observed that if he had been permitted to have remained forty-eight hours in New Orleans, unmolested, it would not have been in the power of General Wilkinson to have arrested him; that he believed he had more friends in Orleans, than the general—and if he . had known, or thought the general would have arrested him, he would have brought with him his equipage for his protection. &c. (Signed)
"J. S. SMITH.''
Extracts from General Adair's publication, dated IGth of Juner 1807—in reply to Wilkinson's.
"It will always be less difficult for me to explain my intentions, than for the general (Wilkinson) and his supporters to tell why he sent an officer with a party last summer, from St. Louis, into the neighbourhood of Santa Fe; where it is said, they are now prisoners—or even why he sent, in October or November last, a gentleman from the Mississippi territory, who travelled by land to Mexico; from thence to Vera Cruz, and returned by water to this place: was that really to buy mules?"
"Wilkinson seems anxious, in his equivocal publications, to impress a belief on the public mind, that he has not written to. me on the subject of an expedition into Mexico."
"In the spring of the year 1806, while in the city of Washington, I received a letter from him, (Wilkinson) dated St. Louis, in which, speaking of Mexico and Santa Fe, he says, do you not know that I have reserved these for my own triumphal entryf'&c. &c.
"About the 1 st of November, 1806, I received a letter from him, (Wilkinson) dated Natchitoches, September 28th, 1806, in which he detailed the number of troops under his command; the number of Spanish troops opposed to him, and by whom commanded; the relative situation of the two armies, together with the orders he acted under; and assures me he will fight in six or eight days at farthest. In that letter are the following words: 'The time long looked for by many, and wished for by more, has arrived, for subverting the Spanish government in Mexico—be you ready and join me, we will want little more than light armed troops,'" &x.
Then after expressions signifying that he (Adair) understood the meaning—and after referring to the president, he says— Let him then prosecute Wilkinson; he will know where to find the above proofs—proofs that scepticism itself shall not doubt." From General Wilkinson's evidence on Burr's trial.
Speaking of a man who had rowed Latrobe (as he said) from Pittsburgh down the Ohio, the witness says: "He informed me that he had passed to Frankfort, in quest of General Adair, for whom he had despatches from Colonel Burr; and not hearing from him there, had returned back to Lexington, in pursuit of
him; where he was informed by Major Waggoner, (a crony of Adair's,) that General Adair being in ill health, had gone to some medical spring; and that if he would wait a few days he might see him; that he did so, and thus had an interview with him without incurring any suspicion; at which time he delivered his despatches. He said General Adair was zealously engaged in the enterprise, and observed, 'Tell him that I will not write to him, but that I expect to meet him at the place: that he may depend I will meet him at the spot;' or words to that effect."—This was fall, 1806.
Had Burr's project been only an expedition against Mexico, and that according to General Adair's view, predicated on a war between Spain and the United States, there was no reason for a clandestine intrigue, a mysterious concealment of the object—or for a false explanation of the intended use and design of the boats, and other preparations, &c. Had the settlement of Bastrop's grant, been the purpose for which they were intended, there was still less reason, if possible, for concealment or denial: besides, women and children, families, would have made a part of the equipment. The precipitate flight of Blannerhassett, is a faithful expositor of his previous declarations, in favour of revolutionizing the western states, and Spanish colonies, and uniting them under one government, at the head of which was to be placed Colonel Burr:—whom we have seen a prisoner; and now in the course of the narrative, is approaching a prosecution ordered by the president to take place in Richmond; and for which great preparations were made, in both counsel and witnesses.
About May, the court was opened, for preparatory proceedings; such as a grand jury, indictment, &.c. It seems, that the prisoner, had been previously accommodated with lodgings in the state penitentiary. Then, on application, and by order of court, he was removed into the city: that on the charge for a misdemeanor, he gave bail, it is believed, in a recognisance of ten thousand dollars: that afterwards upon being charged with treason, "in making war upon the United States," additional bail was required, of fifty thousand dollars; and ordered, at twenty thousand. The prisoner was indicted on both chars ges. In the course of proceeding, a subpoena duces tecum was moved for on the part of Colonel Burr, to the president of the United States, requiring his attendance in court with certain papers, described in an affidavit filed, as a ground for the motion; and opposed by the attorney for the prosecution on the score of executive exemption from the influence of such process. It was by the court decided that the party was entitled to the use of the paper, as he had sworn to its materiality, and that it was believed to be in the hands, or possession, of the president; therefore, the process required, should go to him. That in despotic governments, and even in England, where tire head of the executive department was not subject to process of any kind from a court, such was a principle in the govern5ment. But that the constitution of the United States, was different. That under it, no man was privileged to refuse obedience to judicial process, without assigning a reason, of which the court was to judge. That there should be no doubt, but that proper attention would always be paid to the situation of the president of the United States. That the process ought to issue as requested. That every citizen had a right to justice—of course to all the legal means of obtaining it: that the procurement of evidence, was one of the most importance; and the court could find no excuse for refusing to the motion of the applicant, that kind which by law was authorized, and appropriate to his case. It must therefore issue. That, whether the president obeyed, or not—the court made no anticipation. It was enough for the court, to do its own duty.
It should be added, that the process was executed on the president—that he declined giving any answer, to the officer, or messenger—that he did not in fact attend—but it is believed some time afterwards sent either originals or copies of papers to the prosecuting attorney: and which are supposed to have answered the purpose.
It is owned that an accurate statement of all the facts, is not accessible; that those stated are from impressions of some standing; but believed to convey a correct view, in the outline,