"I Remain" - A Digital Archive of Letters, Manuscripts, and Ephemera
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  1. Monroe, James, 1758-1831
    [Letter] 1792 December 13, Philadelphia / [James Monroe et al.].
    This letter is part of a numbered series sent by Monroe regarding the Reynolds affair in 1792. See others in the collection as well as additional 1797 letters from Hamilton and Monroe referencing the Reynolds affair. See also Hamilton's biography and a guide to research collections of his papers (http://bioguide.congress.gov/scripts/biodisplay.pl?index=H000101), as well as Monroe's official White House biography (http://www.whitehouse.gov/history/presidents/jm5.html) and a guide to researching his papers (http://bioguide.congress.gov/scripts/biodisplay.pl?index=M000858). Monroe and others state that they thought it proper to lay before the recipient [Washington?] some documents concerning the conduct of Alexander Hamilton in the office of Secretary of the Treasury. They do not characterize themselves as prosecutors, but merely imparters of information to the Chief Magistrate for his intelligence. They could have made further investigations into the matter but "in tenderness" the parties involved, have not done so for fear of making it public. This is one of a series of letters in the collection referring to Hamilton's involvement in the "Reynolds scandal." In 1797 accusations were brought against Hamilton by James Monroe and others, alleging that Hamilton had bribed James Reynolds to cover up financial misconduct during his tenure as Secretary of the Treasury; to preserve the honor of the financial system, Hamilton confessed that the blackmail payments resulted from an affair with Reynolds' wife, Maria. Born in the British West Indies, Hamilton was effectively orphaned at age 11, and emigrated to America where he served with Washington during the Revolution. After the war he attended the Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention, publishing the Federalist papers in installments in 1787, and becoming Washington's Secretary of the Treasury (1789-1795). Hamilton's public opposition to Aaron Burr's gubernatorial candidacy in New York resulted in a challenge from Burr, and in the ensuing duel Hamilton was fatally wounded. The author of the letter, James Monroe would become the fifth President of the United States; he also served in the Revolution, as a Senator from Virginia (1790-94), as a member of the Continental Congress (1783-86), as Minister to France under Washington (1894-96) and Jefferson (1803, also England 1803-07), as Madison's Secretary of State (1811-17), and as Secretary of War (1814-15). Frederick Muhlenberg was a preacher and politician, member of the Continental Congress (1779-80) and the House of Representatives (1789-1797) where he was the Speaker of the House for the first and third Congresses.
  2. Monroe, James, 1758-1831.
    [Letter] 1797 July 21 [with addenda on August 4 and October 9], Philadelphia [to] Alexander Hamilton / James Monroe.
    Monroe regards Hamilton's recent public remarks as "indelicate and improper" as Monroe was merely fulfilling his duty to the public in conducting an inquiry; after all, what could be worse than an officer in charge of his country's finances committing speculation? He reports himself satisfied by the explanation; however, he does not bind himself not to hear further information or to investigate if need be. Clingman, for instance, had a right to be heard on the matter. As to speculation, Monroe will reserve judgment until Hamilton presents his defense. Monroe declares himself prepared to "vindicate my conduct and character against the attacks of any one who may assail them." The August 4 addendum states that they ought not to have let the affair get so personal and it is incumbent upon Monroe to accept Hamilton's explanation. On October 9, Monroe states that the intent of his letter was to have a personal interview, but Hamilton's disavowal means that any further steps on his own part would be improper. This is one of a series of letters in the collection referring to Hamilton's involvement in the "Reynolds scandal." In 1797 accusations were brought against Hamilton by James Monroe and others, alleging that Hamilton had bribed James Reynolds to cover up financial misconduct during his tenure as Secretary of the Treasury; to preserve the honor of the financial system, Hamilton confessed that the blackmail payments resulted from an affair with Reynolds' wife, Maria. Born in the British West Indies, Hamilton was effectively orphaned at age 11, and emigrated to America where he served with Washington during the Revolution. After the war he attended the Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention, publishing the Federalist papers in installments in 1787, and becoming Washington's Secretary of the Treasury (1789-1795). Hamilton's public opposition to Aaron Burr's gubernatorial candidacy in New York resulted in a challenge from Burr, and in the ensuing duel Hamilton was fatally wounded. The recipient of the letter, James Monroe would become the fifth President of the United States; he also served in the Revolution, as a Senator from Virginia (1790-94), as a member of the Continental Congress (1783-86), as Minister to France under Washington (1894-96) and Jefferson (1803, also England 1803-07), as Madison's Secretary of State (1811-17), and as Secretary of War (1814-15).
  3. Monroe, James, 1758-1831.
    [Letter] 1792 December 15 [and notes on December 16 and January 2], Philadelphia / [James Monroe].
    Monroe notes that Clingman revealed that Reynolds wrote him a letter but tore and burned part of it. Hamilton, meanwhile, begins worrying about the investigation and talks with Wolcott about the matter, calling Reynolds a "villain, a rascal" who would "swear to any thing." An additional note on the 16th indicates that Monroe and others interviewed Hamilton who told them of a "particular connection" with Mrs. Reynolds and showed them a series of letters from both Reynolds demanding money in exchange for silence, ongoing since 1791. A January 2 note indicates that Clingman called and approved the vindication, then told Mrs. Reynolds who was shocked and "wept immoderately" and denied everything as a fabrication of Hamilton's in which her husband colluded. This is one of a series of letters in the collection referring to Hamilton's involvement in the "Reynolds scandal." In 1797 accusations were brought against Hamilton by James Monroe and others, alleging that Hamilton had bribed James Reynolds to cover up financial misconduct during his tenure as Secretary of the Treasury; to preserve the honor of the financial system, Hamilton confessed that the blackmail payments resulted from an affair with Reynolds' wife, Maria. Born in the British West Indies, Hamilton was effectively orphaned at age 11, and emigrated to America where he served with Washington during the Revolution. After the war he attended the Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention, publishing the Federalist papers in installments in 1787, and becoming Washington's Secretary of the Treasury (1789-1795). Hamilton's public opposition to Aaron Burr's gubernatorial candidacy in New York resulted in a challenge from Burr, and in the ensuing duel Hamilton was fatally wounded. The recipient of the letter, James Monroe would become the fifth President of the United States; he also served in the Revolution, as a Senator from Virginia (1790-94), as a member of the Continental Congress (1783-86), as Minister to France under Washington (1894-96) and Jefferson (1803, also England 1803-07), as Madison's Secretary of State (1811-17), and as Secretary of War (1814-15). Frederick Muhlenberg was a preacher and politician, member of the Continental Congress (1779-80) and the House of Representatives (1789-1797) where he was the Speaker of the House for the first and third Congresses.
  4. Monroe, James, 1758-1831; Clingman, Jacob.
    [Letter] 1792 December 13, Philadelphia / James Monroe and Jacob Clingman.
    Monroe records Clingman's testimony to which Clingman signs an oath on the final page. Clingman states that while visiting with Mrs. Reynolds, Hamilton arrived with a paper he had been "ordered" to give Mr. Reynolds. When Clingman questioned Mrs. Reynolds, she said that Hamilton does not want it known, but that he had given them $1100 and had made $30,000 in speculation; Mr. Reynolds later told Clingman that he could get money from Hamilton to pay his debts. When Reynolds was imprisoned, Hamilton advised Mrs. Reynolds to seek help from Wolcott or Muhlenberg; instead, she received aid from Colonel Wadsworth who had served with her husband's father. She tells Clingman that she has burned all of Hamilton's letters except for two or three to which his name is not attached. When released from prison, Reynolds sent a message to Hamilton by a girl, whom he followed, while being followed himself by Clingman. Hamilton agreed to meet with Reynolds the following morning. This is one of a series of letters in the collection referring to Hamilton's involvement in the "Reynolds scandal." In 1797 accusations were brought against Hamilton by James Monroe and others, alleging that Hamilton had bribed James Reynolds to cover up financial misconduct during his tenure as Secretary of the Treasury; to preserve the honor of the financial system, Hamilton confessed that the blackmail payments resulted from an affair with Reynolds' wife, Maria. Born in the British West Indies, Hamilton was effectively orphaned at age 11, and emigrated to America where he served with Washington during the Revolution. After the war he attended the Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention, publishing the Federalist papers in installments in 1787, and becoming Washington's Secretary of the Treasury (1789-1795). Hamilton's public opposition to Aaron Burr's gubernatorial candidacy in New York resulted in a challenge from Burr, and in the ensuing duel Hamilton was fatally wounded. The recipient of the letter, James Monroe would become the fifth President of the United States; he also served in the Revolution, as a Senator from Virginia (1790-94), as a member of the Continental Congress (1783-86), as Minister to France under Washington (1894-96) and Jefferson (1803, also England 1803-07), as Madison's Secretary of State (1811-17), and as Secretary of War (1814-15). Frederick Muhlenberg was a preacher and politician, member of the Continental Congress (1779-80) and the House of Representatives (1789-1797) where he was the Speaker of the House for the first and third Congresses.
  5. Monroe, James, 1758-1831; Venable, Abraham Bedford, 1758-1811.
    [Letter] 1792 December 13, Philadelphia / James Monroe and Venable.
    Monroe states that news reached them that a man named Reynolds of Richmond, Virginia, was in jail for certificates and would give information on the financial speculations of a highly placed person in the government (i.e., Hamilton). Upon meeting with him, they discovered that Reynolds was from New York, but they heard his explanation anyway; he claimed to have Hamilton in his power and that Hamilton had sent a merchant to bail him out, but then demanded money. Monroe and Venable returned the next day to get a more detailed statement, only to find that Reynolds had absconded. This is one of a series of letters in the collection referring to Hamilton's involvement in the "Reynolds scandal." In 1797 accusations were brought against Hamilton by James Monroe and others, alleging that Hamilton had bribed James Reynolds to cover up financial misconduct during his tenure as Secretary of the Treasury; to preserve the honor of the financial system, Hamilton confessed that the blackmail payments resulted from an affair with Reynolds' wife, Maria. Born in the British West Indies, Hamilton was effectively orphaned at age 11, and emigrated to America where he served with Washington during the Revolution. After the war he attended the Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention, publishing the Federalist papers in installments in 1787, and becoming Washington's Secretary of the Treasury (1789-1795). Hamilton's public opposition to Aaron Burr's gubernatorial candidacy in New York resulted in a challenge from Burr, and in the ensuing duel Hamilton was fatally wounded. The recipient of the letter, James Monroe would become the fifth President of the United States; he also served in the Revolution, as a Senator from Virginia (1790-94), as a member of the Continental Congress (1783-86), as Minister to France under Washington (1894-96) and Jefferson (1803, also England 1803-07), as Madison's Secretary of State (1811-17), and as Secretary of War (1814-15). Frederick Muhlenberg was a preacher and politician, member of the Continental Congress (1779-80) and the House of Representatives (1789-1797) where he was the Speaker of the House for the first and third Congresses. Venable was a Representative and a Senator from Virginia.
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