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At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 70,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Madison, James (1751-1836) to Consuls and Commercial Agents of the United States

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC01470 Author/Creator: Madison, James (1751-1836) Place Written: Washington, D.C. Type: Printed letter signed Date: 1 August 1801 Pagination: 3 p. : docket ; 33 x 20 cm.

Summary of Content: Circular letter instructing the recipients to issue only the enclosed sample Sea-letter (not included) to vessels so that ships owned by American citizens could be identified (and property protected) and fraud from forged seals and sea-letters could be prevented. Also discusses issuing certificates of health to avoid unnecessary quarantines and the consuls' duties relating to the relief of seamen. Signed as Secretary of State.

Background Information: Signer of the U.S. Constitution.

People: Madison, James, 1751-1836

Historical Era: The New Nation, 1783-1815

Subjects: PresidentMaritimeForgery and FraudMerchants and TradeCommerceHealth and MedicalDiplomacyGovernment and Civics

Sub Era: The Age of Jefferson & Madison

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