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[James Alexander Hamilton] to MVB, 18 February 1829

My dear Sir.

Yesterday I dined with the Genl. in company with Calhoun Baldwin Stevenson The Tennessee Delegation & Cambreleng. The General after computing with me the time within which he could receive your answer to his letter <illegible> inquired whether it was not possible for you to be here for two days before the 4th. I said it was not & that you could not probably be here before the 10 or 15th. He has some difficulty about the Dept & says it must ^will^ be left & unprotected until you get here & that he will have no intercourse with it ^while the people remain who are now there^ He then talked the <W> over with me the whole matter as to his Cabinet for all which I infer that the Choice now as to between Ingham & McLane of Del. & The more I hear & think on the subject the more I am convinced the latter out to be selected & let the other take the War. Tazewell is out of the Question. The Calhoun influence is much <taken> of him, it is not however very great If the Genls letter permits you to express an opinion I hope you will do it <illegible>  & particularly advise him to leave the Question as between Ingham & the two Mc Lanes <illegible> to Hamilton Drayton Mc Duffie Archer Dickerson Tazewell with divers others They will divide depend upon it <illegible> in favor of McLane of Del. I am compelled to remark that I have not referred to the destitute relation of the State Dept to prompt you in regard to myself on the Contrary I feel f bound to say that the more I reflect on the Subject the more am I disinclined to live here the pl but to advise you to make some suggestions to the Genl on that subject in order that your <illegible> ^absence^ may be as little bothersome to him as possible I would advise that one of the other Secretaries should ^be required to^ take charge of that department ad interim to term. <illegible> out & that his place should be supplied temporarily by one of your friends and I have no hesitation to say that for that purpose I am at your service. This arrangement will relieve you perhaps from the embarrassment of being <Lee> there and the offer is made by me entirely with that view and no other I will remark that that an objection on my part will be that the salary being only 2000 I could ask him for that sum & I am determined that if I serve the public I will be supported, to make money is not my desire.

I am very much gratified to see that you have as many def devoted friends here as you have ^you do not know them all^ all well

Shall I take lodgings for you & when

James Alexander Hamilton to MVB, 18 February 1829James Alexander Hamilton to MVB, 18 February 1829James Alexander Hamilton to MVB, 18 February 1829James Alexander Hamilton to MVB, 18 February 1829
Source: DLC Library of Congress
Collection: MVB Papers (DLC)
Series: Series 5 (1 January 1825-3 March 1829)