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New York, March 3, 1788. Dear Sir,

The Convention of New Hampshire have disappointed the general expectation. They have not rejected the Constitution, but they have adjourned without adopting it. It was found that, on a final question, there would be a majority of three or four in the negative; but in this number were included some who, with instructions from their towns against the Constitution, had been proselyted by the discussions. These concurring with the Federalists in the adjournment, carried it by fifty-seven against forty-seven, if I am rightly informed as to the numbers. The second meeting is not to be till the last week in June. I have inquired of the gentlemen from that quarter, what particularly recommended so late a day, supposing it might refer to the times fixed by New York and Virginia. They tell me it was governed by the intermediate annual elections and courts. If the Opposition in that State be such as they are described, it is not probable that they pursue any sort of plan, more than that of Massachusetts. This event, whatever cause may have produced it, or whatever consequences


may have in New Hampshire, is no small check to the progress of the business. The Opposition here, which are unquestionably hostile to every thing beyond the federal principle, will take new spirits. The event in Massachusetts had almost extinguished their hopes. That in Pennsylvania will probably be equally encouraged."



New York, July 2, 1788. DEAR SIR,

There are public letters just arrived from Jefferson. The contents are not yet known. His private letters to me and others refer to his public for political news. I find that he is becoming more and more a friend to the new Constitution, his objections being gradually dispelled by his owon further reflections on the subject. He particularly renounces his opinion concerning the expediency of a ratification by nine, and a repeal by four, States, considering the mode pursued by Massachusetts as the only rational one, but disapproving some of the alterations recommended by that State. He will see still more room for disapprobation in the recommendation of other States. The defects of the Constitution which he continues to criticise are, the omission of a Bill of Rights, and of the principle of rotation, at least in the Executive department.

Congress have been some days on the question where the first meeting of the new Congress shall be placed. Philadelphia failed by a single vote from Delaware, which ultimately aimed at that place, but wished to bring Wilmington into view. In that vote New Hampshire and Connecticut both concurred. New York is now in nomination, and if those States accede which I think probable, and Rhode Island which has yet refused to sit in the question can be prevailed on to vote, which I also think probable, the point will be carried. In this event a great handle, I fear, will be given to those who have opposed the new Government on account of the Eastern preponderance in the Federal

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New York, July 16, 1788. DEAR SIR,

The enclosed papers will give you the latest intelligence from Poughkeepsie. It seems by no means certain what the result there will be. Some of the most sanguine calculate on a ratification. The best informed apprehend some clog that will amount to a condition. The question is made peculiarly interesting in this place, by its connexion with the question relative to the place to be recommended for the meeting of the first Congress under the new Government.

Thirteen States are at present represented. A plan for setting this new machine in motion has been reported some days, but will not be hurried to a conclusion. Having been but a little time here, I am not yet fully in the politics of Congress.


New York, July 22, 1788. DEAR SIR,

The enclosed papers will give you a view of the business in the Convention at Poughkeepsie. It is not as yet certain that the ratification will take any final shape than can make New York immediately a member of the new Union. The opponents cannot come to that point without yielding a complete victory to the Federalists, which must be a severe sacrifice of their pride. It is supposed too, that some of them would not be displeased at seeing a bar to the pretensions of this city to the first meeting of the new Government. On the other side, the zeal for an unconditional ratification is not a little increased by contrary wishes.


New York August 11, 1788 DEAR SIR,

The length of the interval since my last has proceeded from a daily expectation of being able to communicate the arrangements for introducing the Dew Government. The times necessary to be fixed by Congress have been many days agreed on. The place of meeting, has undergone many vicissitudes, and is still as uncertain as ever. Philadelphia was first named by a member from Connecticut, and was negatived by the voice of one from Delaware, who wished to make an experiment for Wilmington. New York came next into view. Lancaster was opposed to it, and failed. Baltimore was next tried, and, to the surprize of every one, had seven votes, South Carolina joining the Southern States and Pennsylvania in the question. It was not difficult

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to foresee that such a vote could not stand. Accordingly the next day, New York carried it on a second trial and at present fills the blank. Its success, however, was owing to Rhode Island, whose Delegates have refused to vote on the final question, and have actually gone home. There are not at present seven States for any place, and the result must depend (unless Rhode Island should return with instructions, as is given out) on the comparative flexibility of the Northern and Southern delegaticns.


New York, August 22, 1788.

Dear Sir,

I have your favor of the thirteenth. The effect of Clinton's circular letter in Virginia does not surprize me. It is a signal of concord and hope to the enemies of the Constitution every where, and will, I fear, prove extremely dangerous. Notwithstanding your own remarks on the subject, I cannot but think that an early Convention will be an unadvised measure. It will evidently be the offspring of party and passion, and will probably for that reason alone be the parent of error and public injury. It is pretty clear that a majority of the people of the Union are in favor of the Constitution as it stands, or at least are not dissatisfied with it in that form; or if this be not the case, it is at least clear that a greater proportion unite in that system than are likely to unite in any other theory.

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