For this Gazette
To the Members of Congress, from Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, a Virginian addresses the few following THOUGHTS.
For the last ten years you have been engaged in an ineffectual struggle
to obtain for the South and West , their due weight in the government.
You are now on the verge of realizing your most just expectations.
A majority of electors were determined in favor of Jefferson. It is
to be dreaded, however, that they have all gone for Burr, also. If
this is the case, we have every-thing to fear, and it behooves us
to put our shoulders to the wheels. Burr is well known to be a New-England-man
born. He was cradled in that little nest of aristocracy and religious
hypocrisy, Conn. He is a grandson of the famous puritan-preacher Edwards,
of Stockbridge, in Mass. which has the honor to send Theodore Sedgwick
to Congress. This Edwards was president of Jersey College. His son-in-law,
parson Burr, the father of the Colonel, succeeded him in that office.
The Colonel was educated at that Nursery of Federalism. He is strongly
suspected to be a New-England man at bottom. It is said that he has
often betrayed yearnings in his bowels for the cause of his countrymen;
and, depend upon it, if he is President, he will play us a New-England
trick. All the New England men and Federalists here count upon him.
The greater part of the Jersey state was peopled from Connecticut.
The inhabitants are in sympathy with their Connecticut brethren, in
their religious and political prejudices. Their politics are the same.
We have nothing, therefore, to hope from jersey, or any one of the
Eastern States unless it may be Vermont, & there we can only count
on a drawn vote. New-York is not to be depended on: Burr is their
own man.--It is clear that this State will be as much attached to
her man as we are to ours. They have more reason than one for this
preference. They do not forget that New-York is the greatest State-debtor
to the union. She may find that Southern President with a Southern
majority in Congress, may call for a payment of her balance. Burr's
greatest enemy in this State, has lost all influence, except amongst
a few. He is known to be the personal enemy and competitor of the
others. All therefore he can say is put down by everyone to the score
of personal malice. Much as he hates Jefferson, he would rather see
him President than Burr, against whom his hatred knows no bounds.
This man may be compared to a blasted tree on a naked heath, surrounded
by nothing but poisonous shrubs. His late publickations have lost
him all his credit with the aristocrats and puritans of New-England,
and indeed, with all moderate Federalists. He is a man politically
damned, and therefore nothing can be hoped from his assistance. There
has appeared here a vile sort of pieces, in which every foible of
Mr. Jefferson's character is set in the strongest light. It proves
Burr to be a man of energy. They say he has only opposed particular
measures of the last and present Presidents, and that he opposed these
from thinking they were really impolitic, and not like Jefferson from
a deep rooted hatred to these Eastern and would be Federal Great Men.
Be persuaded they will have a great effect. Another scribbler, who
signs himself "HOBSON" is also contributing all in his power to aid
the cause of Burr, by a parcel of rigamarole fabrication against him,
which are intended to impress the Eastern Members the more strongly
in his favor. They have made Burr here ten friends for one enemy.
In my opinion, they will do more for him, unless counteracted, than
all that could be said in his favor. They pretend to say, he was inactive
during our Revolutionary War. To me, who know the history of his military
services, this more than anything else, seems calculated to be of
service to him. I have not a doubt, they are written by some of his
long-sighted, political friends who mean by falsehoods and blackgaurdism
to elevate him above the philosopher of Monticello. They say here,
that he is a practical man. Practical or not, he has none of the refined
ideas of government that Jefferson has been distinguished for all
his life. That little limb of aristocracy, Delaware, will also be
against us. The ancient hatred between Maryland, and ancient Dominion,
will, I am afraid, incline her against us. They are not of a temper
to forget past wrongs. With the South Carolina members, we have also
to fear the commercial influence, especially with members from the
low country, who are afraid of the fall of rice and indigo if Jefferson
is chosen. They believe because he hates the British that he is an
enemy of their commerce. The two Carolinas import little or nothing;
but buy their goods here in New York and in other ports of the middle
states, such as Philadelphia and Baltimore. Their preference for commerce
over agriculture, may incline them to unite with their trading brethren,
to keep out a man who, they say, is an enemy to commerce and great
cities. I will not allow myself to entertain a moment's doubt of North
Carolina. She is ours by every tie that ought to unite neighboring
states. Of Kentucky, Tennessee and Georgia, there is, also no doubt.
I hope much for Maryland, unless the cursed commercial spirit should
govern. If the story of Burr's dislike to the Federal City, had been
suffered to have its effect, I am sure it would have done much for
us with some of the Maryland members. The misfortune is it has been
disproved in time to leave Dent, and some others, to make up their
minds, in Burr's favor, without this clog dragging against him. Pennsylvania,
commercial as she is, will be with us. We have a host in Gallatin,
who will be Jefferson's secretary of the treasury, and rest assured
McKean is not governor of Pennsylvania for nothing. On this subject
I have much to say, which shall be done through a Philadelphia paper
on my passage home through that city.
A VIRGINIA PLANTER