<br /> Lee Letter: n856

Washington and Lee University

Sender: Henry Lee
Recipient: James Madison

Dear sir

You now have the report from the secretary of war mentioned in my last
letter & omitted.1

The opinions I conveyed then relative to the eastern commotions are daily
supported by additional intelligence. The eastern gentlemen here are
confirmed in sentiments on this matter and beleive that the discontents
will never be settled but by the sword. Perhaps their apprehensions may
have some operation in their judgement: but whether so or not is
immat[er]ial, for it is unquestionably true that present appearances
portend extensive national calamity. The contagion will spread and may
reach Virginia.

The objects of the malcontents are alluring to the vulgar and the impotency
of government is rather an encouragement to, than a restraint on, the
licentious. Carrington left us a few days past to visit Col. Grayson,
whose situation demanded this attention. This leaves me alone, tomorrow
I expect his return, when I hope Grayson and his family will
arrive.2

His misfortune is truely lamentable but will soon yield I trust to
relaxation from business and the company of his friends.

Yours affec.,

H. Lee Jnr

Notes:

Receiver’s copy, Madison Papers, Library of Congress.

1 See Lee to Madison, October 19, note 2.

2 Edward Carrington resumed his seat in Congress by October 30, but William
Grayson, who had gone to Philadelphia with James Monroe in early
September where he developed “an extr[aordinar]y disease,” did not
attend again until November 20. See JCC,
31:621, 652, 910, 916, 930; and Monroe to Madison, September 12,
postscript.