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title:“Cutting to Thomas Jefferson”
date written:1788-7-11

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last updated:Jan. 22, 2013, 8:03 a.m. UTC
retrieved:April 24, 2024, 6:29 a.m. UTC

"Letter to Thomas Jefferson." The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787. Vol. 3. Ed. Max Farrand. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1911. Print.

Cutting to Thomas Jefferson (July 11, 1788)

London July 11. 1788
Mr Martin, the attorney general, who was primarily appointed to that office by Mr Chase — was by the same influence deputed to represent the state — after Mesrs Carrol, Johnson &c &c the first choice of the legislature declined quitting Maryland even upon the important business of new-framing the national government. Mr Chase having just before menaced the Senate for rejecting a wide emission of paper money — and appealed to the people against them — they had joined in that general issue — and cou'd not venture to relinquish to a violent and headstrong party their active influence in the senate as well as in the lower house — at the very moment — when it was so essentially needed to stem the torrent of the populace for the paper.1 Those Gentlemen therefore remained at home — convinced their fellow citizen of their superior rectitude and wisdom — and defeated that favourite measure of Mr Chase: meanwhile Mr Martin and Mr John F. Mercer — a young gentleman whom you well know —went to the general Convention — opposed the great leading features of the plan which was afterwards promulged — withdrew themselves from any signature of it: — and from the moment when it was proposed for ratification — in conjunction with Mr Chase and his sure coadjutor Mr Paca — exerted every effort to hinder its adoption. So far did Mr Martin proceed in his avowed hostility, as even to detail in the face of decency — before the assembled Legislature of Maryland — the petty dialogues and paltry anecdotes of every description — that came to his knowledge in conventional committees and private conversations with the respective members of the Convention — when at Philadelphia. I blush'd in my own bed-chamber when I read his speech on this side of the Atlantic.

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