The Federalist (Dawson)/Introduction

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INTRODUCTION.

Among the most effective of the instrumentalities which were employed in the overthrow of the royal authority within the Thirteen United Colonies of America was The Public Press; and in the proceedings which led subsequently to the establishment of "The Constitution for the United States" between the several States which assented thereto, the same powerful agent was again brought into action, both by the supporters and by the opponents of that instrument.

In the latter memorable contest, quite as much as in the former, the Public Newspaper Press, in all parts of the Union, teemed with anonymous political papers of great merit, in the preparation of which some of the finest intellects in America had found employment; and at no other period, not even in the memorable days of "The Whig Club," had the judgment of the People been instructed with more profound ability, or its action directed with greater wisdom.

Among the manifold productions of the Press, on the occasion referred to, none were received with more general respect, and none have been preserved and referred to with more satisfaction, than those over the signature of "Publius," which found their way into the periodical Press of the city of New York in the fall of 1787 and during the following winter and spring.

At that time, and on the question of approving and assenting to the proposed "Constitution for the United States," the State of New York occupied a peculiar position, and on her decision of the question of its acceptance and ratification, to a greater extent than on that of any other State, depended the future welfare of the United States, and the place, if any, which they should occupy in the great family of nations.

Within the borders of New York, and among her members, had originated the greater number of the measures which had led to the War of the Revolution; and, inspired by her example, and encouraged by her success,—not unfrequently, also, directed by her popular leaders,—her twelve associates had learned, at an early date, to look to her as to a leader, in the assertion of their own political rights, as well as in the more decided opposition which, from time to time, they had made to the representatives and to the measures of the sovereign.

In the protracted struggle for independence which had ensued, her inhabitants had suffered more from the enemy, and during a longer period, than those of any other State; and her territory—which had been held by the Sovereign of Great Britain from an early day, by right of conquest—was the last which had been abandoned by the royal forces,—nor, even then, had it been fully and formally surrendered, in the mode which had been prescribed by the military usage of that day.

Of the thirteen members of the sisterhood of States, after the war had been terminated in an honorable peace, New York alone had discharged all her financial obligations to the United States; and when the failure of her sister States to meet the requisitions of the Fœderal Congress had produced disaster, and had threatened the worst results, she had not hesitated to make still further payments into the Fœderal treasury, in anticipation of future requisitions,—her People, meanwhile, sustaining her Government in its devotion to the Union, and the inhabitants of her extended territory, from the wrecks of their fortunes and from the current fruits of their labors and of their enterprise, as promptly supplying the means for the consummation of her purposes.

At length, wearied with the continued shortcomings of her sister States, and, probably, aroused by the frequent insults and threats of dismemberment which had been freely indulged in by more than one of her immediate neighbors,—all of whom had envied her rising greatness, without at any time aspiring to her fidelity to the Fœderal compact—on the suggestion of one of the most distinguished and most patriotic, but most maligned, of her citizens, New York had been the first to propose measures for a complete revision of the Fœderal Constitution.

In this hazardous undertaking, however, while she had steadily sought the extension of sufficient authority to the Fœderal Congress to render the existing Government entirely efficient for the purposes for which it had been organized, New York had never lost sight of her own dignity, nor ceased to guard, in the most careful manner, all her rights as a free, sovereign, and independent Commonwealth. Accordingly, while she had steadily sought the delegation, by the several constituent States of the Confederacy, of sufficient authority to the Fœderal Congress to maintain the credit of the United States, to pay their obligations, and, generally, to execute its duties with more efficiency and despatch, she had as steadily opposed every movement which might be construed to imply a surrender of the prerogatives of her sovereignty, or which, in the future, might be considered as her approval of a centralization of "the Right to Command;" and every proposition which possibly might serve at any time to obliterate the lines of the several States, or to consolidate the thirteen distinct Peoples and Sovereignties which then existed within the Union, into one People, one Nation, one Sovereignty, was vigorously opposed both by her members and her Government.

Governed by these well-known sentiments, and sustained by so jealous a constituency, it need not be wondered at, that the Delegation from New York in the Fœderal Convention—a body which had originated in the action of the Legislature of that State, several months before—had firmly disapproved the pretensions, and resolutely opposed the designs, of several of the States, in the formation of a new Constitution; or that, when the simple result which she had proposed had been found unattainable, two of the three gentlemen who composed her Delegation in that Convention had considered it their duty to withdraw from its sessions, leaving her without a legal representation in that assembly, and throwing the entire responsibility of the result of its deliberations on the eleven States which had remained therein. Nor need it excite any surprise that, from that time forth, the opposition to the proposed "Constitution for the United States" had been nowhere so determined, so general, or so completely organized as in the State of New York; and that in no other State had that opposition been directed by so formidable an array of leaders, each of whom had been so entirely, so consistently, so effectively, or, during ss long a period, identified with the best interests of the State and of the Union. So thoroughly, indeed, had the opposition to the proposed Constitution been organized in that State, and with so much skill had it been directed by the experienced popular leaders, that the impending political crisis appears to have been fully understood, even while the Fœderal Convention was yet engaged in the discussion of the various projects of its members; and, through the newspapers of the day, as well as through tracts which had been prepared for the purpose, the fundamental principles of Governmental science, the existing necessities of the United States, and the relative rights and duties of the constituent States and of the Union, had been discussed before the People, with marked ability and the utmost diligence.

The termination of the labors of the Fœderal Convention, and the promulgation of its proposed plan of Government, served rather to concentrate than to diminish the strength of the opposition; and, thenceforth, from every county in the State, the arguments and appeals of the "Anti-Fœderalists"—as the States'-Rights party of that day was subsequently called—were hurled against the devoted instrument, without ceasing, and with the most relentless severity.

On Thursday, the twenty-seventh day of September, 1787, the same day on which the draught of the proposed Constitution had been promulgated in the city of New York, and side by side with that document in The New York Journal,—the ancient organ of "The Sons of Liberty" in that city,—there had also appeared the first of a series of powerfully written essays, over the signature of "Cato," in which the condemnation of the proposed form of Government had been pronounced in the most emphatic terms. This antagonistic effusion, a few days afterwards, had been seconded in the same paper by the first of another series, even more ably written than the former, over the signature of "Brutus,"—probably from the pen of one of the most accomplished statesmen of that period, who was, also, one of the most elegant writers of the day; while, in an "Extraordinary" sheet of the same Journal, on the same day, there had also appeared the first number of a third series, over the signature of "Centinel," which had been copied from the Philadelphia press, in which also the action of the Convention had been handled with great severity. Still later, "Cincinnatus" supported the assault; and Brutus, Jr.," "A Son of Liberty," "Observer," "An Officer of the Continental Army," "Medium," "A Countryman" (Duchess County), "A Citizen," "An Old Whig," "A Countryman" (Orange County), "One of the Common People," and other writers, in the same and other newspapers of the day, and in rapid succession, sustained the same cause, with great acuteness and ability. Tracts, also, in opposition to the proposed Constitution, were prepared, both in New York and Albany, for distribution in New York and Connecticut, possibly in other States; and through the ancient organization of "The Sons of Liberty," practically revived under its former leaders, Colonels John Lamb and Mariunus Willett, the most thoroughly organized opposition confronted the friends of the proposed Constitution, in every part of the State, and rendered their undertaking a desperate one.

At the same time, while the opponents of the "new system"—harmonious in their sentiments and united in their action—were thus resolutely and skilfully resisting it throughout the State, its nominal friends were widely separated in their sentiments; and, in many cases, they were apathetic, if not discordant, in their action. At best, they were only few in number, when compared with their adversaries; and, in the lukewarmness of some of them, and in the entire inaction of others of their number, there was little to afford encouragement, nothing to insure success.

But, not alone by reason of the apathy and the discord which existed among the nominal friends of the proposed Constitution, nor of the harmonious and energetic opposition of those who disapproved its provisions, nor of the numerical weakness of the former when compared with the strength and perfect organization of the latter, was the position which New York then occupied so peculiar, and at the same time so important.

Possessing a territory which extended from the Atlantic seaboard to the southernmost bounds of the British possessions in America, it was within the power of New York, entirely and absolutely, to separate New England from every other portion of the United States; and it remained for her alone to determine—even in opposition to the expressed wills of her twelve sister States—whether or not the territories of the United States should, thenceforth, be severed by the intervening territory of a foreign sovereign republic; whether or not the Union, thenceforth, should be maintained, if maintained at all, between twelve distinct Commonwealths, occupying not only distinct, but detached territories.

The peculiarity of her geographical position, therefore, the rising importance of her commerce, the acknowledged intelligence and enterprise of her inhabitants, the great ability and fearlessness of her statesmen and popular leaders, the widely spread influence of her political action in former days, not yet wholly forgotten, and her unflinching devotion to the then existing Union of the States, had rendered it important, in the highest degree, that New York should assent to the proposed "Constitution for the United States;" while, on the other hand, her undeviating opposition to any centralization of political powers within the Fœderal Government, which the constituent States, as such, could not entirely control, her uncompromising adherence to her rights as a free, sovereign, and independent republic, the unanimity of her well-tried popular leaders and of her inhabitants, in opposition to the proposed Constitution, and the perfect organization of her citizens, in every county throughout the State, to prevent the official approval of that instrument, had indicated that the task of securing that approval of the Constitution, in the form which it then possessed, would be difficult, if not impossible.

It need not be a matter of surprise, therefore, that while the best friends of the new Constitution, throughout the Union, had desired the organization of measures for securing the assent and approval of the State of New York to that instrument, there were but few among her citizens who were inclined, and a still smaller number who were qualified, from their associations and their acquirements, to come before the People, and to undertake that delicate but arduous duty.

Robert R. Livingston—firm and patriotic, and possessed of abundant abilities—had evinced, in public, but little interest in the subject. His social position and his high attainments would have amply qualified him for a leader of the People of his native State, in any political emergency, had not an overpowering love of ease prevailed over every other trait in his character, withdrawn him as far as possible from public duties, and rendered him dilatory and uncertain.

James Duane's sympathy with the royal authorities in colonial New York; his collusion with Lieutenant-Governor Colden to frustrate the earlier efforts of his neighbors and fellow-citizens, while the latter were struggling with the Crown for their original political rights; and his concerted opposition to the measures which had been recommended by the Continental Congress of 1774, of which body he had been an active but unworthy member,—had disqualified him for any position through which the People was to be controlled in its political action, and rendered useless any efforts which he might make in a cause which was dependent for its ultimate success on the sympathy of the great body of the People of New York.

John Jáy, a long-tried and faithful servant of the State and of the Congress, was also a native and a citizen of New York, but, like the greater number of the leading friends of the proposed Constitution in that State, he was not adapted for leadership in its support and establishment. Descended from one of the most respectable families in the Province, an eminent and highly successful member of its bar, from an early age an active participant in the momentous political events which had rendered New York so distinguished among the republics which formed "the new constellation" in America, an acute and remarkably successful diplomatist, candid, above most of his associates, in the declaration of his carefully considered sentiments, and resolute and untiring above all of them in seeking an open and unequivocal accomplishment of his well-conceived purposes, he nevertheless failed—if he ever tried—to secure the hearty sympathy of the masses of his countrymen, and was not qualified to direct them in any struggle whatever. Taking an abstract and self-evident truth as the basis of his argument, he was accustomed to reason independently and boldly for the right, per se, without regarding or respecting the opinions of those with whom he was associated; and with equal boldness, and with an energy which scorned fatigue, he pushed forward to the front, for the establishment of his own principles, without swerving either to the right or to the left, alike irrespective of the movements of his associates and of the prejudices and sympathies and personal or local interests of those whom they led. While his great abilities, the value of his public services, and his personal integrity were freely recognized by all, the greater number of his fellow-citizens considered him selfish, impracticable, and aristocratic; and some portions of his earlier political action,—at that time remembered by many of his opponents,—his generally reserved manner, and his evident want of fellowship with the great body of the People, gave color to the popular opinion concerning him, and impaired his influence and his usefulness.

In the discussion of the great question which attracted the attention of the People of the State of New York, at the period referred to, Mr. Jáy's inclination does not appear to have led him to take any part whatever, nor does the People appear to have looked to him for either counsel or personal leadership. His well-known and freely acknowledged preference for a complete centralization of all political power—even to the extent of dissolving the political and constituent powers of the several States, of reducing them to the grade of counties, and of making them entirely dependent, even for their nominal existence and for their local officers, on the will of a consolidated, National Government—having received no favorable consideration in the Fœderal Convention, he had found little in the proposed Constitution which he could commend, and nothing for which he could labor.

The responsibility, therefore, as well as the greater portion of the labor, which attended the organization of the friends of the new Constitution—scattered throughout the State, the direction of their feeble efforts, and the general conduct of the struggle in this, the principal battle-field for "the new system," necessarily devolved on Alexander Hamilton,—a gentleman whose record was one of honorable and patriotic service; whose voice had never been raised in behalf of political oppression, or in extenuation of official dishonor; in whom the People of New York had often placed confidence, and by whom it had never been betrayed; whose great abilities, indomitable energy, and never-failing tact had seldom been questioned and never surpassed. Deeply read in that portion of the literature of ancient and modern times which pertained to his studies as one of the rising statesmen of America, and personally acquainted, in all their minutiæ, with the politics and politicians of New York,—then as complicated as they ever have been since that period; a close observer of current events, and fertile in resources for the instantaneous seizure and improvement of passing opportunities, which promised advantage to his cause or to his party; well versed in all the intricacies of the law, and skilled beyond the greater number of his contemporaries in all the graces of elocution; distinguished in arms, in civil life without reproach,—he was, above all others of his party, the best qualified for a popular leader, and a champion, before the People of his adopted State, of the new, and widely abused, Constitution.

It is evident that among the subjects antagonistic to "the new system," which had arrested the attention of Colonel Hamilton at an early day, had been the two series of essays, over the signatures of "Cato" and "Brutus" respectively, to which reference has been made; and that he had promptly determined on measures which, he supposed, would counteract the bad effects which those essays were so well calculated to produce, among The People of the State of New York, to whom they had been specifically addressed.

Without any unnecessary waste of time, he appears to have taken a rapid survey of the general subject, and of the peculiar plan of operations—developed in the earlier numbers of their essays—which the able leaders of the States'-Rights, or anti-constitutional party in New York had adopted, in their well-digested opposition to "the new system," and he resolved to employ the same potential agency which they had employed,—the newspaper press,—and, if possible, the same sheets, for the dissemination of sentiments which, he hoped, would counteract the arguments of his opponents, and lead the People of the State of New York to accede to the proposed Constitution. It is evident, also, that, with that tact which formed so prominent a trait of his character, Colonel Hamilton resolved, in view of the sturdy attachment of the inhabitants of New York to the Confederated Union of the Thirteen United States which then existed, to avoid the charge which had been brought against the friends of the proposed Constitution, of a latent desire to dissolve that Union and to consolidate the thirteen Peoples of which it was constituted into one Nation, under a single Government, by a bold and unequivocal defence of that Union, per se, and by a countercharge on his opponents, of the existence among them of a secret purpose to dissolve that Union, and to establish in its stead two or more "petty confederacies." It is evident, also, that he resolved to appeal to the cupidity of the commercial classes—with whose well-known tendency to conservatism, at all times, he was well acquainted—by assuming that the immediate adoption of the proposed Constitution, without amendment, by the State of New York, was necessary in order to preserve the Union from disruption, and the State from anarchy, if not from dismemberment and annihilation; that a peremptory rejection of it by the State of New York, or a prolonged delay in ratifying it, which would be necessary if a previous revision of the instrument should be demanded by that State, would be productive of the most serious evils, both to the State and to the Union; and that the derangement of the Fœderal finances was the legitimate result of a radical defect in the Articles of Confederation; while the apparent stagnation of trade,—the necessary consequence of an over-supply of goods and of an undue proportion of vendors when compared with the aggregate of the population,—by being magnified to such an extent, and presented in such a manner, as to make them appear as the necessary results of a defective form of Government, he hoped, might also afford him great assistance as an introduction both to his projected condemnation of the existing Fœderal system, and to his proposed appeal in behalf of "the new Constitution."

A plan of operations which was so well adapted to produce confusion in the ranks of those who opposed "the new system," and to shake the confidence which the People of the State of New York had reposed in the arguments of its leaders, needed only a careful elaboration of its details, and a prompt and energetic execution of its different parts, to insure some degree of success. To secure these, Colonel Hamilton appears to have sought the assistance of those whose peculiar qualifications adapted them to the discharge of peculiar lines of duty, reserving to himself, however, not only the general control of the discussion, but the execution of those portions of it which appear to have been attended with the greatest difficulties. The Secretary of the United States for Foreign Affairs, (Mr. Jáy,) notwithstanding the lukewarmness of his sympathy, was induced to undertake those portions of the discussion which related to the importance of the Union in connection with the foreign relations of the States, and to the treaty-making authority of the Senate,—both of them being subjects which his official position enabled him to discuss with unusual ability, without compromising in the least his general political sentiments, and without obliging him, necessarily, to assent, even by implication, to any portion of the proposed Constitution. Mr. Madison, a delegate in the Convention from the State of Virginia, and one of the most influential members of that body, was also enlisted in the work, and to him was intrusted the discussion of those branches of the subject which were particularly connected with the individual powers and interests of the States, and of the People, including popular tumults, the republican character of the proposed Constitution, the authority which it proposed to delegate to the three departments of the Fœderal Government respectively, the relative influence of the proposed Fœderal and the State authorities, and the organization and authority of the proposed Senate and House of Representatives. A third auxiliary pen, it is said, was originally proposed; but no person having been named in that connection, the individual referred to is not certainly known, although it is not improbable that James Duane's profound legal abilities or Philip Schuyler's practical business education was that which was particularly desired to make the Fœderalist more perfect in some of its parts.

It is fortunate for the student of American Constitutional History, that the distinguished leader of the "Federalists" in New York left behind him the syllabus of the great work which is the subject of our examination, from which, and from other sources, not less authentic, a more complete analysis of the argument which was employed in behalf of the proposed Constitution has been prepared, and will be submitted at the close of this Introduction. It will not be necessary, therefore, in this place, to examine the details of the discussion by the three champions of "the new system," or to inquire in what manner the powerful and well-directed opposition within the State of New York was met and overcome.

The three associates labored harmoniously, each within his designated field of inquiry, but all under a common signature. The joint production was styled "The Fœderalist"—to indicate its support of the Fœderal Union of the thirteen sovereign States; and the several numbers which the triad produced bore the common signature of "Publius."

Of the manner in which the three authors discharged their self-imposed duty, the general approval of their countrymen and the encomiums of the learned throughout Europe have borne the most satisfactory evidence. The Fœderalist is surpassed by few, if any, writings of a similar character, of the period in which it was written; and if confusion sometimes prevails in its pages from the want of precision in their use of acknowledged technical terms; if their early training in British schools, under British masters, hampered them in their newly acquired position as law-givers for Commonwealths which had expressly rejected the fundamental principles of British governmental science; if the then imperfectly acquired knowledge of the ancient republics rendered their illustrations, to some extent, imperfect,—the distinguished authors of the work shared these misfortunes with the best writers of the age in which they lived, and their work is not more disfigured from these causes than are those of the most approved authors of that period.

The first of the numbers which composed the series was printed and published in The Independent Journal; or, The General Advertiser,—a semi-weekly newspaper, which was published on Wednesdays and Saturdays by J. McLean & Co., at No. 41 Hanover Square, New York,—on Saturday, the twenty-seventh of October, 1787; and, with little interruption, the publication was continued in that paper until the second of the following April, when, with the issue of No. LXXVI., it was suspended until after the entire work had been issued, by J. and A. McLean, in book-form, on the twenty-eighth of May, 1788. The publication was resumed in The Independent Journal on the fourteenth of June,—when Number LXXVIII. of the work, as it had appeared in the collective edition, was issued in the newspaper as Number LXXVII., in continuation of the series in that form,—and it was continued therein, as opportunity was afforded, until the sixteenth of August, when Number LXXXIV. of the series (Number LXXXV. of the collective edition) was published, and the work completed in the newspaper form.

On Tuesday, the thirtieth of October, 1787, The New York Packet, also a semi-weekly, which appeared on Tuesdays and Fridays from the office of Samuel and John Loudon, Printers to the State, No. 5 Water Street, commenced to reprint The Fœderalist, and without any interruption, until the fourth day of the following April,—when Number LXXVI. was issued,—the publication was continued in that paper. At that time, as has been already stated, the publication of the numbers in The Independent Journal was suspended; and as The Packet appears to have copied them from that paper, the reproduction of the work in the columns of the latter was also necessarily suspended. The work does not appear to have received any notice whatever from the editors of The Packet, after it was issued in book-form; and the publication was, in consequence, never completed in that paper.

On Tuesday, the thirtieth of October, 1787,—the same day on which the publication of The Fœderalist was commenced in The New York Packet,—Number I. of the work was reproduced, also, in The Daily Advertiser, a newspaper which was printed at No. 22 Hanover Square, in the city of New York, by Francis Childs, a protégé of Mr. Jáy. With regularity and apparent good-will the republication was continued in that newspaper until Monday, the eleventh of February, 1788, when Number L. appeared in its columns; but after that date no notice whatever appears to have been taken of the work by Mr. Childs, and, consequently, the subsequent numbers of it did not appear in the columns of The Daily Advertiser.

On Tuesday, the eighteenth of December, 1787, The New York Journal, and Daily Patriotic Register, a newspaper which was " printed and published by Thomas Greenleaf, at the Printing-Office, No. 25 Water Street," in the city of New York, contained the following: "Yesterday the manuscript copy of the subsequent was communicated to the Editor, with an assurance, that his press should be preferred, in future, for the first ushering into public view, the succeeding numbers. If the public are pleased to stigmatize the Editor as a partial printer, in the face of his reiterated assertions of 'being influenced by none,' what more can be said! This stigma he prefers, to that of a slavish copiest; consequently, unless manuscripts are communicated, he will be constrained (however injudicious) still to crouch under the weighty charge of partiality."

Following this brief editorial introduction was printed Number XXIII. of The Fœderalist, which appeared, also on the same day, in The New York Packet. The publication of the succeeding numbers was continued, with tolerable regularity, during a few weeks, when it flagged, although it was not entirely discontinued until Wednesday, the thirtieth of January, 1788, on which day, with the issue of Number XXXVIII.,—which had appeared in The Packet on the eighteenth of the same month,—The New York Journal ceased to notice it in any way whatever.

The authorship of the several numbers of The Fœderalist, at an early day, became the subject of an angry discussion between the friends of General Hamilton and those of Mr. Madison. Without attempting to reconcile the differences which then existed, or to revive the discussion by expressing an opinion concerning the merits or demerits of the several claims, it appears proper, in this place, to notice the subject generally, leaving the more careful examination of those claims, so far as they relate to each number respectively, until the origin and characteristics of the several numbers shall successively become the subjects of examination.

It appears that personal friends of General Hamilton, soon after the first publication of the work, had obtained from that gentleman the names of the several writers, together with the numbers of which they were respectively the authors. It is not improbable that Mr. Madison also extended similar favors to his more intimate friends,—indeed, this was positively asserted by one of the most able of their number, in the discussion of the question which took place in 1817 and 1818. Although these respective lists were not designed for the perusal of other than limited circles of personal and political friends, there is little doubt that their conflicting statements were equally known to General Hamilton and Mr. Madison, and that both were extremely sensitive concerning them.

For the purpose of bearing testimony on this subject, it is supposed, on the day before he received the fatal ball at Weehawken, General Hamilton visited the office of his friend, Judge Egbert Benson, No. 20 Pine Street, New York, and inquired for that gentleman. He was informed by Robert Benson, Junior, a nephew of Judge Benson, who was sitting at one of the desks, that the latter, in company with Mr. Rufus King, had gone to Massachusetts, and that he would be absent during several days. The General manifested considerable uneasiness; and after having nervously walked around the room during several minutes, he stopped in front of one of the bookcases, took from it a volume of Pliny's Letters, in the original, which stood there, and commenced to turn over its leaves, as if he was looking for a passage. Suddenly, with an evident desire to avoid the notice of the young men who sat in the room, he slipped into the volume a small piece of paper, when he returned the book to its place in the bookcase, and left the office. On the following day the General was shot; and when Judge Benson returned to the city, a few days afterwards, his attention was called to the remarkable visit to his office to which reference has been made. The volume which the lamented statesman had taken from the shelf of the bookcase was carefully examined; and the scrap of paper —less than a quarter of a sheet of note-paper—which he had so carefully placed within it was quickly brought to light. In the fine, round handwriting of the General, but without his signature, it bore the following brief statement:—

     "No. 2—3—4—5—54—J:
     "No. 10—14—37 to 48 inclusive—M:—
     "No. 18—19—20—M: & H: jointly—
     "All the others by H:—"

This interesting memorandum, which became subsequently the principal evidence for the friends of General Hamilton, in their dispute with those of Mr. Madison, was carefully preserved by Judge Benson, who secured it with four wafers on the inside of the cover of his copy of The Fœderalist, where it remained several years. The interest which attached to it, however, was so great, that the venerable owner of it was induced to remove it from its place,—having previously copied it carefully on the opposite fly-leaf of the volume,—and to present it to the Public Library (the Society Library being generally known by that name) in the city of New York. It was in that well-known repository when Mr. Coleman disputed with Mr. Gideon, in 1818, concerning the authorship of The Fœderalist; but, together with other relics of the same character, which will be referred to hereafter, it has been stolen, within a few years past; and at this moment, it is probable, it graces the collection of some unprincipled collector, whose love of possession is more powerful than his personal integrity.[1]

In the latter part of the year 1807, the executors of General Hamilton deposited in the Society Library in the city of New York the copy of The Fœderalist which had belonged to that gentleman. The following letter, said to have been written by Chancellor Kent, will describe it fully:—

[From The Port Folio, (New Series,) Vol. IV. No. 20, Philadelphia, Saturday, November 14, 1807.]

Mr. Oldschool,

The Executors of the last will of General Hamilton have deposited in the Publick Library of New-York a copy of 'The Fœderalist,' which belonged to the General in his lifetime, in which he has designated, in his own hand-writing, the parts of that celebrated work written by himself, as well as those contributed by Mr. Jay and Mr. Madison.

As it may not be uninteresting to many of your readers, I shall subjoin a copy of the General's memorandum for publication in 'The Port-Folio.' M.

'Nos. 2, 3, 4, 5, 54, Mr. Jay.
'Nos. 10, 14, 37, to 48 inclusive, Mr. Madison.

'Nos. 18, 19, 20, Mr. Hamilton and Mr. Maddison jointly—all the rest by Mr. Hamilton.'"[2]

It will be perceived that this memorandum agrees in every respect with that which General Hamilton left at the office of Judge Benson on the day preceding his

fall; and it will be a curious inquiry hereafter to ascertain whether they may be considered authoritative on the still unsettled question concerning the authorship of The Fœderalist.

The publication of Delaplaine's Repository of the Lives and Portraits of Distinguished Americans, in 1816, was the occasion of a discussion of the subject of the authorship of the several numbers of The Fœderalist more public than any which had preceded it. In the biographical sketch of General Hamilton which the first volume of that work contained, the Editor employed the following language:—

[From Delaplaine's Repository, Vol. I. pp. 69, 70.]

"After the publication of the constitution, colonel Hamilton, conjointly with Mr. Madison and Mr. Jay, commenced The Federalist, a work which is justly ranked with the foremost productions in political literature. Besides being the most enlightened, profound, and practicable disquisition on the principles of a federal representative government that has ever appeared, it is a luminous and elegant commentary on the republican establishments of our own country. It was published in the years 1787 and 1788, in a series of essays addressed to the citizens of New York, and had a powerful influence both in that and other states, in procuring the adoption of the federal constitution. The style is as perspicuous, eloquent, and forcible, as the matter is pertinent and the arguments convincing.

"The part which colonel Hamilton bore in this publication, although concealed for a time, has been at length discovered. Indeed had no key to the authorship ever been found, readers of taste and critical discernment would be able to recognize, without such assistance, the traces of his pen. Although his co-adjutors possessed the resources of statesmen and the learning of scholars, their productions are greatly inferior to his. The papers of Hamilton in The Federalist are marked by nearly the same superiority, both as to richness, elegance and force, which is exhibited by those of Addison in the Spectator. He wrote the whole work, except Nos. 2, 3, 4, 5, and 54, which are from the pen of Mr. Jay; Nos. 10, 14, and 37 to 48 inclusive, from that of Mr. Madison; and Nos. 18, 19, and 20, in the composition of which he and Mr. Madison were associated.[3] Had he never been the author of any other work, his fame as a writer would have been conspicuous and durable. For, although it must be acknowledged that he has, in various instances, in The Federalist, violated the rules of classical composition, that production would, notwithstanding, have done honour to the pen of Bolingbroke or Burke."

As may readily be supposed, this paragraph immediately arrested the attention of the friends of Mr. Madison; and by them it was generally and openly condemned. At length one of them appealed to the public, through the columns of the newspaper press; and in the following letter he joined issue with Mr. Delplaine and the friends of General Hamilton:—

[From the National Intelligencer, Vol. XVIII. No. 2574, Washington, Thursday, March 20, 1817.]

"To the editors:—

"In looking over Delaplaine's Repository of the Lives and Portraits of Distinguished Americans, I discovered that he has given currency to an erroneous statement, which was published soon after the death of General Hamilton, in The Port Folio, concerning the authorship of the respective numbers of the work called The Federalist, which it is known was written by Messrs. Madison, Hamilton and Jay. The biographer affirms, that the numbers written by Mr. Hamilton are manifestly superior to the others, and that a key to them is unnecessary, as all persons of taste & judgment will at once designate them. Altho' I have repeatedly read that celebrated work, and have never discovered the superior merit of the part executed by Gen. Hamilton; yet, as the intelligent public are as competent to decide as that writer, the maintenance of his opinions, if erroneous, can do no other injury than to lessen the character of the Repository for fidelity and impartiality ; and I should not have deemed it proper, if the facts were not mis-stated, to take any notice of them. With the sole view, therefore, of giving to each of the gentlemen his proper share of the merit which The Federalist entitles him to, and to correct an error, assuming the garb of historical credibility, I take upon me to state, from indubitable authority, that Mr. Madison wrote Nos. 10, 14, 18, 19, 20, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 62, 63, and 64.

"Mr. Jay wrote Nos. 2, 3, 4, and 5; and Mr. Hamilton the residue.

"I have been for several years in possession of the information upon which this statement is predicated; and, if it be doubted or denied, I will venture to appeal to the papers of Gen. Hamilton for the confirmation of my assertion.

"CORRECTOR.

"March 10, 1817."

Among the friends and admirers of General Hamilton no one possessed a livelier interest in maintaining the honor of his departed chief than William A. Coleman, the editor of The New York Evening Post, and few were more able than he to defend a contested question, in which General Hamilton, his party, or his principles were involved. The letter of "Corrector" immediately arrested his attention; and within a week after its publication in Washington it was copied at length into The Evening Post, with the following elaborate "Answer":—

[From The New York Evening Post, No. 4616, New York, Tuesday, March 25, 1817.]

"I feel it to be a duty I owe the revered memory of the great and good man who honored me during seven years, with his friendship, to arrest at once, the circulation of the above erroneous paragraph. Originating in the National Intelligencer, it might reasonably be considered as having received the sanction of Mr. Madison himself, and the confident tone in which it is expressed, might strengthen that idea, but, besides that, his character forbids such a suspicion, there is an inaccuracy of expression which never could have escaped him, or any piece revised by him. The writer is very much hurt that the biographer of Hamilton should have thought the numbers written by him, superior to the others; and calls it 'a misstatement of facts.' Now, however erroneous such an opinion may be, it certainly can be considered as no more than a deficiency in taste, but assuredly, correctness of language will never permit it to be called 'a misstatement of facts.' To repel any unjust suspicions, however, from being entertained in a certain quarter, I deem it proper, in justice to the noble minded Hamilton, to relate a fact, in reference to this part of the subject, which came within my own personal knowledge. "In the year 1802, Mr. Hopkins, printer, of this city, intending to publish a new edition of The Federalist, took this opportunity to apply to gen. Hamilton, and solicit him to correct and revise the numbers, and, so far succeeded, as to obtain his consent to assist in the revisal, provided a gentleman of competent literary talents would undertake to make the first verbal corrections, for the original idea was to be strictly adhered to:—He then examined the whole with his own eye, previous to its being committed to the press, and saw that it was free from literary blemishes.[4] When the whole was ready for the press, the gentleman who had thus given his aid, wrote a preface, in which he took occasion to make respectful mention of the names of the two gentlemen who were associated with Hamilton, in the essays Mr. Jay and Mr. Madison. Whether he was disposed to express a similar opinion with that expressed in Delplaine, respecting the relative merits of the writers, I do not now recollect, but I do know, that the following expressions, on that point, were dictated by Gen. Hamilton himself: 'In justice to these gentlemen, it is thought necessary to add, that, as far as has been practicable to discriminate their productions, they are not unequal in point of merit to those which are solely from the pen of general Hamilton.'

"I have now to notice what, indeed, may, with strict propriety, be called 'a misstatement of facts.' The writer of the above article, in the National Intelligencer, takes upon himself to state upon, what he calls, indubitable authority, that Mr. Madison wrote the Nos. 10, 14, 18, 19, 20, and those from 37 to 58 inclusively, besides the Nos. 62, 63, and 64; that Mr. Jay wrote Nos. 2, 3, 4, and 5, and Mr. Hamilton the residue. But although he affirms he has been several years in possession of the information upon which this statement is founded, and offers to appeal to the papers of gen. Hamilton for the confirmation of his assertion, it is, nevertheless, materially erroneous. It is now in my power to rectify the error and upon the very authority to which the writer appeals, and thus to set at rest, forever, all controversy upon the subject: I proceed to do so:—

"It may be proper, first, to observe, that the writer in Delaplaine's Repository has adopted a misstatement, from The Port Folio, in not allowing credit to Mr. Madison for 45 and 46. But the writer in the National Intelligencer has fallen into numerous errors, respecting every one of the three gentlemen concerned.

"Gen. Hamilton, a day or two previous to his death, stepped into the office of his friend judge Benson, then absent, and in the presence of his clerks, left a paper in a book lying there and departed. After his fall, this paper was observed, and deposited by judge Benson in the city-library, with a certificate, that it was the hand-writing of A. Hamilton. The following is a copy:

"'Nos. 2, 3, 4, 5, 54, Mr. Jay; Nos. 10, 14, 37, to 48 inclusive, Mr. Madison; Nos. 18, 19, 20, Mr. Hamilton and Mr. Madison, jointly; all the rest by Mr. Hamilton.'

"This is a sacred relick: call it not in question."

To this "Answer" a prompt and unequivocal reply was made by "Corrector," through the columns of the National Intelligencer,—the same newspaper in which had appeared the first letter from the same pen. The following is the reply referred to:—
[From the National Intelligencer, Vol. XVIII. No. 2593, Washington, Saturday, May 3, 1817.]
"FOR THE NATIONAL INTELLIGENCER.

"April 18, 1817.

"To the Editors:—

"When I penned my note of the 10th of March, which was published in your paper of the 19th, wherein I stated by whom the respective numbers of The Federalist were written, I did not anticipate any controversy concerning its contents; if I had, I certainly never would have given the facts to the world without permission. Unfortunately, from the turn the subject has taken, it is too late now to ask it, and I cannot suffer the ' Answer ' in The New York Evening Post, which a friend has recently sent to me, to pass in silence.

"The author of the Answer is correct in supposing that my note was written without the knowledge of Mr. Madison; indeed, I have no doubt that he never desired or expected to have the subject mentioned, and was surprised when he saw the publication.

"After writing so many masterly pieces since the organization of the existing government, it is not possible to add to the full measure of his fame for exalted talents and patriotism, by proving, incontrovertibly, that he wrote all those parts of the work in question, which I have ascribed to him. No adequate motive could, therefore, exist for encountering the risque of any contradiction in relation to it.

"The writer of the ' Answer ' is mistaken in supposing that I am hurt by the opinion advanced in the Repository, that the numbers written by Mr. Hamilton are superior to the others; and I do not perceive the justice of the criticism he has indulged in. I have not called that opinion a misstatement of facts. My expression is, 'The maintenance of his opinions, if erroneous, can do no other injury than to lessen the character of the Repository for fidelity and impartiality, and I should not have deemed it proper, if the facts were not misstated, to take any notice of them.' What is it, I ask, I would not have noticed? I answer, his opinions, unless the facts on which they rest were misstated.

"But it is not material to vindicate the style of my composition; its truth is more important to the public and to myself. I will proceed to state the proofs upon which I wrote the piece alluded to. Whilst Mr. Madison was Secretary of State, a friend of his purchased, at Washington city, Hopkins' edition of The Federalist, and, in a conversation with Mr. Madison relating to it, he requested him to furnish an index to the numbers, for his private use. Mr. M. then gave him a pencilled memorandum of the numbers he had written, which was sealed in the first volume, where it now is, and from that pencilled memorandum, in the handwriting of Mr. Madison, I copied the numbers into my note of the 10th ultimo.

"If any corroboration of this proof were wanting, the numbers in question will furnish it. The New York Evening Post says Mr. M. wrote Nos. 37 to 48, inclusive, and that Mr. Hamilton wrote all the succeeding ones, except No. 54.

"No. 47 commences with 'The meaning of the maxim, which requires a separation of the departments of power, examined and ascertained.'

"No. 48, 'The same subject continued, with a view to the means of giving efficacy in practice to that maxim.'

"No. 49 & 50, continue and conclude the subject, with the same view.

"No. 49 contains the following sentences: 'The author of the "Notes on the state of Virginia" quoted in the last paper, has subjoined to that valuable work the draft of a constitution which had been prepared in order to be laid before a convention expected to be called in 1783, by the legislature, for the establishment of a constitution for that commonwealth. The plan, like every thing from the same pen, marks a turn of thinking, original, comprehensive, and accurate; and is the more worthy of attention, as it equally displays a fervent attachment to republican government, and an enlightened view of the dangerous propensities against which it ought to be guarded.' Here are two material circumstances tending to designate Mr. Madison as the author of these numbers. First, they relate to the same point of enquiry which is illustrated by a reference to all the examples furnished by the history of other nations, and the constitutions of the several states composing our confederacy. The argument is pursued with a unity of design and execution, which renders it almost impossible, certainly altogether improbable, that it is the production of more than one person. Nos. 47 & 48, which it is admitted were written by Mr. Madison, enter into the marrow of the subject; and wherefore would he leave it unfinished, when more than half completed?

"2d. The quotation from No. 49, goes far to prove that Mr. Madison wrote it. Mr. Jefferson is there referred to in terms of distinguished approbation—None but a zealous friend would have expressed such an unqualified eulogium on him; and it is well known that Mr. M. has always manifested the most unbounded regard for that gentleman. Other inherent evidence might be adduced, but the labor would be an act of supererogation.

"CORRECTOR."

From some cause which does not appear, unless it is to be found in the letter itself, Mr. Coleman did not see fit to continue the discussion with "Corrector," but contented himself with promising to do so in the future,—a promise which he does not appear to have fulfilled, at any time.

The following is the only notice of "Corrector" which the files of The Evening Post contain, during the year succeeding the publication of his second letter in the National Intelligencer; and, so far as can now be ascertained, "Corrector" does not appear to have been again interfered with by any one.

[From The New York Evening Post, No. 4652, New York, Tuesday, May 6, 1817.]

"The Federalist.—The correspondent of the National Intelligencer, who appears, under the signature of 'Corrector,' has, at length, replied to the answer which I gave some time since, to his first communication relative to the respective writers of the numbers of The Federalist; in which he repeats his assertion that Mr. Madison is the author of many more of those papers than has been generally supposed, and which he particularly enumerates. For the present, I merely apprise him and the public, that I shall, hereafter, as soon as I shall have collected certain circumstantial testimony, corroborative of my former statement, shew, from indubitable evidence, verbal and documentary, that it is substantially correct."

At the same time that Mr. Coleman maintained a dignified silence toward "Corrector," he was equally silent on the question generally, as much so indeed as if no such question existed; and not until the following January, when Mr. Gideon issued a Prospectus for a new edition of the work, did there appear a syllable on the subject, in the columns of The Evening Post. While the political friends of the two principal authors of the The Fœderalist were thus engaged in discussing the question which Mr. Delaplaine had unwittingly raised, the more intimate personal friends of Mr. Madison, and probably Mr. Madison himself, were not passive spectators of the war of words which raged around them. One of the former, the late Richard Rush, a statesman of eminent abilities, who possessed to an unusual extent the confidence of the latter, and held a seat in his cabinet, had the forethought to secure from the hands of Mr. Madison himself the written testimony of that gentleman on the well-contested question, and to certify its genuineness for the benefit of those who might appeal to it after his decease. That interesting manuscript, with its accompanying certificate, has since descended to his eldest son, and is treasured by the latter as one of his most precious heirlooms; the reader, therefore, will peruse with peculiar pleasure the following complete description of them from the hand of the gentleman who now possesses them, by whom it has been communicated for insertion in this work.[5]

"Mount Airy, near Philadelphia,
"29th August, 1863.

"Dear Sir,

"Every fresh opportunity afforded to the American People to study and comprehend, and thereby learn to reverence and obey, that matchless written Constitution, the very first object of which, as expressed in its opening words, was to form a more perfect Union, is a fresh avenue to the glory and perpetuity of the Union, and deserves the cordial coöperation of every one. The Papers entitled 'The Federalist, on the New Constitution, written in 1788 by Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Jay and Mr. Madison,' to commend to the calm consideration and deliberate approval of the People of the United States that great instrument of Government, illustrating, by their consummate ability, a rare combination of the powers of the human intellect in expounding truth in elementary discussion, no less than the profound knowledge and wisdom of the writers, conveyed in the simplest and most convincing style, have so triumphantly accomplished that great design, that nothing more seems required to the full knowledge and understanding of the one, than a perfect familiarity with the other. Hence, I regard as of the utmost importance, the enterprise in which your letter informs me you are engaged of preparing for the press a new edition of The Federalist with the aid of such authentic materials as you mention have been placed in your hands, intended to throw additional light upon the early history of that great work, and thereby give it additional interest in the eyes of the American People.

"The enterprise has peculiar importance at this great epoch of our history. Had there been more students of The Federalist, there would have been fewer intellects scathed by the delirium of Secession. Had more of our modern statesmen erected their knowledge of the theory and principles of their Government upon the solid and sure foundation to be derived from every page of that work, rather than the miserable one of ignorant fanatical discussion, sectional jealousy, and ill-weaved sectional ambition, the halls of Congress would never have been partially deserted for fields of civil strife; nor would the future historian of this country be compelled to chronicle a gigantic and infamous Rebellion, which, while it checked, for a time, the amazing prosperity, served only to demonstrate, and triumphantly assert, the still more amazing power and resources, resistless authority and imperial grandeur, of the United States; but a Rebellion which caused, alas, the frightful expenditure of rivers of blood and millions of treasure; in recalling which Humanity weeps over the hosts of heroic slain and maimed, and the heart of the Nation heaves in deepest grief and sympathy with the desolate wives and mothers. You are therefore, in my opinion, permit me to say, rendering a signal service to the great cause of the Union, in the object in which you have embarked; and I cheerfully proceed, in answer to your letter, to furnish my humble contribution to your task.

"You are pleased to invite from me such materials, known to you to be in my possession, as go to establish the authorship of the several numbers of The Federalist, about which there has been some controversy.

"My edition of the work came to me under the will of my late father as a part of his library. It is the edition of Williams and Whiting, New York, 1810, in two volumes, forming part of The Works of Alexander Hamilton, in three volumes, by the same publishers.

"This edition belonged to him certainly as early as 1816, as will be seen. From 1814 to 1817 my father was Attorney-General of the United States, and as such a member of the cabinet of Mr. Madison, then President. I may perhaps be permitted to say that he was honored with the friendship, as with the confidence, of that illustrious statesman, pure patriot, and eminent chief magistrate.

"On a fly-leaf of the second volume there is the following memorandum in my father's handwriting. I copy it exactly as it appears:—

"'The initials J. M. J. J. and A. H. throughout the work, are in Mr. Madison's hand, and designate the author of each number. By these it will be seen, that although the printed designations are generally correct, they are not always so. The manuscript note from page 123 to 128 volume first,[6] is also by Mr. Madison.

"'R. R.

"'Washington 1816.'

"The initials 'R. R.' and the date are also in my father's hand.

"The Federalist consists, as you are aware, of LXXXV. separate numbers. Each bears at its head, in my edition, the printed word, 'Number I.,' ' Number II.,' and so on, to the end of the series; each number having the name (or supposed name) of the writer printed immediately underneath.

"For example: under 'Number I.' is the name of Mr. Hamilton,—thus, 'By Mr. Hamilton.' To the right of 'Number I.' are the manuscript initials 'A. H.,' which of course are in Mr. Madison's hand, according to the foregoing memorandum by my father on the fly-leaf; showing that the printed designation of the authorship is in this instance correct.

"So of Number II. The manuscript initials 'J. J.' show the same thing; the printed designation of the authorship being 'By Mr. Jay.'

"Of each of the numbers from III. to XVII., both included, the same is true, the manuscript initials corresponding, in each instance, with the writer's name as printed; Numbers III., IV., and V. being the production of Mr. Jay, Numbers X. and XIV. of Mr. Madison, and the others of Mr. Hamilton, and indicated accordingly by the manuscript initials, 'J. J.,' 'J. M.,' 'A. H.'

"Number XVIII., according to the printed designation, appears to be 'By Mr. Hamilton and Mr. Madison.' But the pen is drawn over the words 'Mr. Hamilton and,' leaving the printed designation to read simply 'By Mr. Madison,' the manuscript initials 'J. M.' occupying the usual place to the right of the number.

"Precisely the same remark applies to Numbers XIX. and XX., of which, therefore, we have Mr. Madison's authority for saying that he was himself the sole author, equally as of Number XVIII.

"From Number XXI. to Number XXXVI., both included, the manuscript initials 'A. H.' correspond with the printed designations of the authorship, showing each number to have been the work of Mr. Hamilton's powerful and accomplished mind and pen.

"From Number XXXVII. to Number XLVIII., both included, the initials 'J. M.' in manuscript correspond in like manner with the printed name of the writer, showing each of those numbers to have been the production of the learning and wisdom of Mr. Madison.

"Numbers XLIX. to LVIII., both included, are each ascribed in the printed designation to Mr. Hamilton. In my edition the pen is drawn, in the case of each number, across Mr. Hamilton's name, and the manuscript initials 'J. M ' substituted, showing Mr. Madison to have been the writer. The single Number LIV. shows the name 'Jay' in manuscript, near those initials, over which the pen has been again drawn, leaving the manuscript initials 'J. M ' as before.

"Numbers LIX., LX., LXI., ascribed to Mr. Hamilton in print, are equally shown to be the productions of his pen by the manuscript initials 'A. H.' in each instance.

"Numbers LXII., LXIII., of which Mr. Hamilton is designated in print as the writer, each have a pen mark drawn across his name, for which, in each case, the manuscript initials 'J. M.' are substituted.

"So of Number LXIV., ascribed in print to Mr. Hamilton. A pen mark, drawn across his name, and the manuscript initials 'J. J.' substituted, point to Mr. Jay as the writer.

"To the right of Number LXV. stand these initial letters and words in manuscript, 'A. H. & to the end,' and I find that each of the remaining numbers to LXXXV., (the last,) inclusive, is, according to this, correctly ascribed in print to Mr. Hamilton, exhibiting a monument of the industry, as well as great powers of mind, of that extraordinary man.[7]

"I have thus endeavored to respond, as fully as I could, to your call, and shall be gratified if I have been able to aid your important object. Am I venturing too far in asking permission, having given you an extract from one of the fly-leaves of my edition, to introduce another, in attestation to the exalted character of The Federalist, as viewed by one of the most profound statesmen in Europe?

"' Paris, October 9. 1849. In conversation last night with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, M. Guizot, at his own house, about this work, (the portrait of Mr. Hamilton which hung in his salon having led to the conversation) he said of it, that "in the application of elementary principles of government to practical administration, it was the greatest work known to him."

"'R. R.'

"This memorandum and the initials 'R. R.' are also in my father's hand, while Minister to France, and are from the fly-leaf at the end of the first volume. When it is remembered that M. Guizot, then also Prime-Minister of France, was considered to be not only among the most profound, but best read, statesmen in Europe, besides being one of the ablest members of the French Chamber of Deputies, where intellect and learning and talents of the highest order abound, this tribute to the authors of The Federalist will not, I imagine, detract from our high appreciation of the work.

"I am,

"Dear Sir,

"Your very faithful servt.

"BENJAMIN RUSH.

"Henry B. Dawson, Esq.,

"Morrisania, New York."

On the eighth of December, 1817, an article appeared in the Washington City Gazette, in which the subject was again introduced to the public, and a list which had been "furnished by a gentleman who received it from "Mr. Madison" was given to the world and pronounced to be "indisputably correct."[8]

On the first day of January, 1818, Jacob Gideon, Junior, a printer doing business in the city of Washington, issued "Proposals" for the publication of a new edition of The Fœderalist, among which was the following: "Having been furnished with the names of the writers of the different numbers from a source which cannot be questioned, he will attach the author's name to each number, that the reader may know, without difficulty, by whom it was written."

Following so closely the article which had appeared in the Washington City Gazette on the eighth of December preceding, these "Proposals" appear to have aroused Mr. Coleman; and, having no longer any fear of "Corrector," and seeing before him only an industrious printer whose pen was armed with no terrors, that veteran partisan writer hastened to assail Mr. Gideon and his "Proposals" in the columns of The Evening Post, and to threaten him with "the penalty of having his edition denounced" in that paper, if the statement concerning the authorship which had appeared, a few days before, in the Washington City Gazette should be "adopted" in the proposed new edition.

As Mr. Coleman added considerable matter of general interest to the indiscreet threat to which reference has been made, the entire article will be found worthy of a perusal; and, consequently, it is transferred in extenso to these pages. The following is an exact copy:—

[From The New York Evening Post, No. 4875, New York, Tuesday, January 27, 1818.]

"The Federalist.—It is announced in the newspapers at Washington, that a new edition of this work is in press, at that place, and will be delivered in November next, with the names of the respective numbers prefixed to each, as obtained 'from a source which cannot be questioned.'—The Washington City Gazette, also, in December last, observing that 'as a contrariety of opinions, on the subject of the different writers of this work existed, he, for the satisfaction of the public, and to put the question at rest,' gave a list that was 'furnished by a gentleman who received it from Mr. Madison,' which he says will be found ' indisputably correct.' This was improved by another editor into the assertion 'that the list was furnished by Mr. Madison himself.' But whoever furnished it, or whencesoever it was derived, I scruple not to say, it is not entitled to credit; and I caution Mr. Gideon, the publisher, against adopting it in his work, under the penalty of having his edition denounced: and I now proceed to give the proofs upon which I speak with such confidence.

"In the National Intelligencer appeared the first attempt to rob the dead, in order to decorate the brows of the living; and the following paragraph appeared in that paper of March 16th, as from a correspondent.

"'I take it upon me to state from indubitable authority, that Mr. Madison wrote Nos. 10, 14, 18, 19, 20, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, and 62, 63 and 64. Mr. Jay wrote Nos. 2, 3, 4 and 5, and Mr. Hamilton the residue.'

"The writer of this paragraph, in order to give it the most imposing air, added, that if the list was disputed, he appealed to Gen. Hamilton's papers that he left behind him, and they would shew it to be correct. He was taken at his word; the papers were appealed to, and the following was given to the public as an exact transcript of the one left by Gen. Hamilton with a friend a few days before his untimely death, and doubtless, in express apprehension of that awful event.

"'Numbers 2, 3, 4, 5 and 54,[9] Mr. Jay.

"'——— 10, 14, 37 to 48 inclusive, Mr. Madison.

"'——— 18, 19, 20, Mr. Madison and Mr. Hamilton jointly. "'All the rest by Mr. Hamilton.'

"A corresponding key has long been in the possession of several gentlemen here; furnished, soon after The Federalist appeared in volumes, by Mr. Royal Flint, a man of letters and a political writer, since dead, but at that time in habits of intimacy with Gen. Hamilton, and all the principal men of that day, and who asserted, on his personal knowledge, that it was correct.

"From this it appears that the Washington list is incorrect as to every one of the writers named: For instance: No. 64 was claimed by Mr. Madison which certainly belonged to Mr. Jay, who was long denied to have written more than four papers: Nos. 18, 19, and 20, were claimed by him, although thus proved to belong jointly to himself and Mr. Hamilton; and no less than twelve entire papers, namely, from 49 to 55, and 62, 63, also claimed by Madison, were solely written by Hamilton. The result of this investigation was immediately published in this paper, and the substance of it copied into most of the other papers in the United States. A little dissatisfaction was manifested in the National Intelligencer, at the time, with a promise that the subject should be resumed at some future day, when the ' indisputable authority' should return from the South. The next we hear worth attention, is from the article in the Washington City Gazette, above quoted, and copied into The Commercial Advertiser; in which, the editor, without taking the least notice of the errors which had been detected by gen. Hamilton's papers, to which Mr. Madison's friend had expressly appealed, and by which he was consequently forever concluded, undertakes to repeat that he will put the question in dispute, forever at rest, by giving a list 'furnished by a [nameless] gentleman [at second hand] who received it from Mr. Madison himself,' which, he adds, 'will, (also,) be found indisputably correct.' This, the reader will remember, is long after he knew its correctness was not only disputed, but by the highest authority proved to be false. The Gazette then proceeds to give his list thus furnished:

"'By this it appears that letters 1, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16, 20, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 59, 60, 61, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, were written by Mr. Hamilton. Letters 2, 3, 4, 5, 64, by Mr. Jay. And letters 10, 14, 17, 18, 19, 21, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 62, 63, by Mr. Madison. Fifty by Mr. Hamilton; five by Mr. Jay; and thirty by Mr. Madison.'

"It may now be worth our while to examine how far these two authentic lists, both derived from indubitable authority, both asserted to be, indirectly, from Mr. Madison himself, and both declared indisputably correct, agree with one another, and how far they do not; because, if it is found they differ materially from each other, it will no longer be pretended, I presume, that they are both 'indisputably correct.'

"First, then, in the National Intelligencer it was asserted that Mr. Jay only wrote four papers, viz. 2, 3, 4 and 5; and this assertion was persisted in after the error had been publicly rectified and pointed out. It was asserted that Mr. Madison wrote 64, and it was accordingly set down in the first list claimed by him. But here in this second list, in the City Gazette, we find the number allowed Mr. Jay is five, and 64 is, at length, given up. The truth is the fact had been ascertained and stated by Mr. Jay's biographer in Delaplaine's Repository, and the chasm which occurred between the 5th and 64th number accounted for, in a manner that convinced somebody it would not be prudent to persist in urging a claim, while the witness who could prove its injustice was still alive.

"Again: In the first list in the National Intelligencer 20 is claimed as Mr. Madison's, as well as 64. In the second in the City Gazette, 20 is allowed to Mr. Hamilton, as 64 is to Mr. Jay.

"In the second list 17 and 21 are both claimed by Mr. Madison, but in the first both these numbers, 17 and 21, are given to Hamilton.

"Thus we see irreconcileable discrepancies in the two 'indisputably correct' lists, and yet it is boldly asserted that both are placed beyond all controversy, and both derived from a source that admits of no doubt. 'The collision of one falsehood with another,' says an able polemic divine, 'has often demonstrated the falsity of both.' To sum up the whole in a word: a particular mode of proof is pointed out as conclusive, and by this it has appeared that one paper claimed by Mr. Madison, viz. 64, was written by Mr. Jay; that three other papers claimed by Mr. Madison, viz. 18, 19, and 20, were written by Hamilton and himself jointly; and that ten others, viz. from 40 to 58, and 62, 63, now claimed by Mr. Madison, were not any part of them written by him, but solely by Mr. Hamilton. Instead, therefore, of the statement that 50 were by Mr. Hamilton, 30 by Madison, and 4 by Mr. Jay; it appears, by evidence of their own selection, that 62 were written by Hamilton, 3 by him and Madison jointly, 5 by Mr. Jay, and the residue, viz. 16 only by Mr. Madison.

"How must every generous mind revolt at this ruthless attempt to wrest any portion of his just fame, from as able and disinterested a friend to this country and its liberties, as ever breathed? Alas! he has left no other patrimony to his children! In the name of justice as well as of mercy, then, seek not to lessen it."

On the following day, (January 28, 1818,) Mr. Coleman continued the discussion by publishing the following supplementary article:—

[From The New York Evening Post, No. 4876, New York, Wednesday, January 28, 1818.]

"It has been suggested that I was less explicit than I might have been, in the article entitled The Federalist, in last evening's paper, respecting the memorandum there mentioned as left by Gen. Hamilton, designating the respective authors of that work: I, therefore, for the entire satisfaction of the public, now state, that the memorandum referred to is in General Hamilton's own hand writing, was left by him with his friend judge Benson, the week before his death, and was, by the latter, deposited in the city library, where it now is, and may be seen, pasted in one of the volumes of The Federalist."

To the insolent threat which Mr. Coleman had issued in the former of these articles, the printer of the new edition published the following temperate answer:—

[From the City of Washington Gazette, Monday, February 2, 1818.]
"NEW EDITION OF THE FEDERALIST.

"To the Editor of the City of Washington Gazette.

"Mr. Elliot,—The Editor of the New York Evening Post, in his paper of the 27th ult. has thought proper to caution me against the adoption of the list of authors of The Federalist, as published in the papers of this city, in the edition of that work which I am about to put to press, 'under the penalty of having it denounced.' This premonition is the more surprising, inasmuch as I had stated that the names of the authors would be procured 'from a source which cannot be questioned.'

"In pursuance of my original intention, I wrote to Mr. Madison, the late President of the United States, and who is well known to have been one of the writers of The Federalist; and he has been so kind as to lend me his copy of it, with the name of the author of each number prefixed in his own hand writing; and with various corrections of the text as made by himself in those numbers which came from his pen. I hope, therefore, that I may escape the penalty of Mr. Coleman's denunciation, and that he will be candid enough to allow that Mr. Madison is quite as good authority in relation to the authorship in question as Gen. Hamilton, and that in appealing to the living memory of the former I inflict no injury on the memory of the dead.

"In addition to The Federalist, the volume, which a liberal patronage justifies me in immediately publishing, will contain the old act of confederation, the present constitution of the United States, the letters of Pacificus, by Gen. Hamilton, on President Washington's proclamation of neutrality, and the letters of Helvidius, written (by Mr. Madison) in reply to Pacificus. This explanation, I trust, will be satisfactory to the public, and fix their confidence in the accuracy of the edition which I offer them.

"I am, sir, respectfully, your obt. servt.

"JACOB GIDEON, junr.

"February 2, 1818."

Appended to this letter, in the columns of the Gazette, is the following editorial article:—

"Mr. Gideon has been so polite as to allow us to examine Mr. Madison's copy of The Federalist. It is of the edition of 1799, printed in New York, by John Tiebout. On comparing the list of authors inserted in this Gazette on the 8th of December last, with the designation of authorship in Mr. Madison's hand-writing in his own copy, we find that the former was, in some respects, erroneous. The following, however, taken from the volumes now before us, may be confidently relied on:

"Nos. 1, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16, 17, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 59, 60, 61, 65, to 85 inclusive, by Mr. Hamilton.

"Nos. 2, 3, 4, 5, 64, by Mr. Jay.

"Nos. 10, 14, 18, 19, 20, 37 to 58 inclusive, and 62 and 63, by Mr. Madison.

"This designation differs very widely from that of the editor of the New York Evening Post, who denies Mr. Madison the authorship of twelve numbers to which he is entitled, to wit: Nos. 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 62, and 63; and claims for Mr. Hamilton a participation in Nos. 18, 19, and 20. With respect to these last three numbers, we find the following note, at No. 18, in Mr. Madison's copy, and in his own hand-writing:

"'The subject of this and the two following numbers happened to be taken up by both Mr. H. and Mr. M. What had been prepared by Mr. H. who had entered more briefly into the subject, was left with Mr. M. on its appearing that the latter was engaged in it, with larger materials, and with a view to a more precise delineation; and from the pen of the latter the several papers went to the press.'

"The question may be now considered as settled, and we are willing to let it rest here. But if Mr. Coleman continues to persist in asserting the correctness of his erroneous list, we will proceed to show, from the topics and style of the contested numbers, that Mr. Madison has a fair claim to them.

"We congratulate the public upon the prospect of Mr. Gideon's edition of The Federalist, which promises to be the most perfect and satisfactory that the American people have yet seen of that valuable production."

To these articles, on Tuesday, the seventeenth of February, 1818, Mr. Coleman replied through the columns of The New York Evening Post, in which he admitted that the literary reputation of neither Mr. Madison nor General Hamilton rested "on the precise numbers of The Federalist that each wrote;" and "that the recollections of both may have been so imperfect as to have very innocently erred as to a particular paper, or two or three papers; but with regard to so great a number as twelve, stated by Hamilton to have been written by him, but now claimed by Mr. Madison, he felt himself compelled to say he was utterly unable to devise any satisfactory solution, that will be consistent with the honor of both gentlemen." At the same time he expressed his continued confidence in General Hamilton's statements; and contrasted that gentleman's character for veracity with that of Mr. Madison, in doing which he denounced the latter in the most bitter terms. As he had done some months before, however, when "Corrector" opposed him, Mr. Coleman saw fit to withdraw from the controversy which he had provoked by his threatened denunciation of Mr. Gideon, and expressed his willingness to rest the dispute there, purposely avoiding, to that end, the use of any language which might give fresh occasion to prolong a controversy, which, he feared, could never be settled to the entire satisfaction of all parties.

Notwithstanding this second unmanly withdrawal from the face of an opponent who appeared to be a match for him, another article, from the same pen, on the seventh of March following, reiterated the charges against Mr. Madison; and Mr. Russell, editor of The Boston Centinel, who had ventured to consider that the statement of Mr. Madison and those of General Hamilton "must stand on the same elevation until one or the other is removed by contradictory or confirmatory facts," suffered "the penalty" which had been prepared for, but not imposed upon Mr. Gideon, the publisher of the new edition of The Fœderalist.

The dispute does not appear to have been revived; and in the errors—which are evident, and acknowledged by his most zealous friends—into which General Hamilton had fallen in the preparation of the memorandum which he left in Judge Benson's office, as well as of that which was written in his own copy of The Fœderalist; in the recollections of Mr. Jay, imperfect as they are acknowledged to have been, even concerning those numbers of which he was the author; in the structure of many of the disputed numbers themselves; and in the general assent of the literary and legal communities to the classification of the authors as made by Mr. Madison in his own copy of The Fœderalist, and copied by Mr. Gideon, the reader may find evidences of the good judgment which Mr. Coleman displayed in withdrawing from a controversy, in the conduct of which his own violent temper, his uncontrollable partisan bitterness, and his ignorance of the exact truth concerning the subject in dispute, or his willingness to conceal it when it conflicted with his purposes, rendered him the most valuable auxiliary of his opponents, and the most dangerous ally of his friends.

While The Fœderalist was yet incomplete, the great ability which had been displayed by its authors had so far attracted the attention of the reading public throughout other States than that for which it had been especially written, that a collective edition of the essays was considered desirable, and Messrs. J. & A. McLean, No. 41 Hanover Square, New York, were induced to collect and put them to press, in a convenient form, and to offer them for sale at a moderate price.

Accordingly, on the first day of January, 1788, these gentlemen issued the following Prospectus:[10]

In the Preſs, and ſpeedily will be publiſhed,

The Federalist;

A collection of ESSAYS, written in favor of the

NEW CONSTITUTION,

By a CITIZEN of NEW-YORK:

Corrected by the author, with additions and alterations.

CONDITIONS.

This work will be printed on a fine paper and good type, in one handſome volume duodecimo.

The number of pages the volume will contain, cannot rightly be aſcertained, as the author has not yet done publishing, but the printers engage to deliver them to ſubſcribers at the very reaſonable rate of Five Shillings for 200 pages, Six Shillings if 250, and all above gratis.— —The numbers already published will make more than 200 pages, and the author does not ſeem to be nigh a cloſe.

To render this work more complete, will be added, without any additional expence,

Philo-Publius, and the Articles of the Convention,

As agreed upon at Philadelphia, Sept. 17. 1787.

*⁎* A few copies will be printed on ſuperfine royal writing paper, price Ten Shillings.

†‡†No money required till delivery.

Subſcriptions are taken in by J. McLEAN, and Co. No 41, Hanover-ſquare, by the Printer hereof, by the ſeveral Bookſellers of the city, and by all others entruſted with propoſals.

New-York, January 1, 1788.

It will be perceived that the printers had been made acquainted with so little of the plan of The Fœderalist that they proposed to issue the entire work, together with the essays of "Philo-Publius," in a single duodecimo volume of about two hundred and fifty pages; and there is no evidence that any other of their promises was entitled to any greater amount of confidence,—there certainly are no "additions," in this edition, to the text of the numbers which had appeared in the newspapers when it was published; while the "corrections" and "alterations" of that text which it contains are so few in number and so trivial in their character that they are entitled to no particular notice.

On Saturday, the twenty-second of March, 1788, the following advertisement appeared in The Independent Journal; or, The General Advertiser, from which it appears that the first volume was published on that day:—

THIS DAY IS PUBLISHED,

Price to Subſcribers, only Three Shillings,

The FEDERALIST,

Volume First.

A Deſire to throw full light upon ſo intereſting a ſubject has led, in a great meaſure unavoidably, to a more copious diſcuſſion than was at firſt intended; and the undertaking not being yet completed, it is judged adviſeable to divide the collection into two Volumes.

The ſeveral matters which are contained in theſe Papers, are immediately interwoven with the very exiſtence of this new Empire, and ought to be well underſtood by every Citizen of America. The Editor entertains no doubt that they will be thought by the judicious reader, the cheapeſt as well as moſt valuable publication ever offered to the American Public.

The ſecond Volume is in the Preſs, and will be publiſhed with all poſſible expedition.

☞ Subſcribers will be pleaſed to ſend for their Copies, to the Printing-Office, No. 41, Hanover-Square, four Doors from the Old-Slip.

*⁎* Thoſe Gentlemen who were intruſted with Subſcription Liſts, will pleaſe to return them to the Printers; and thoſe in the Country are deſired to forward theirs immediately.

New-York, March 22, 1788.

The volume which was thus announced bears the following title:—

"The | Federalist: | a collection | of | essays, | written in favour of the | new constitution, | as agreed upon by the federal convention, | September 17, 1787. | In two volumes. | Vol. I. | New-York: | Printed and sold by J. and A. McLEAN, | No. 41, Hanover-Square. | M,DCC,LXXXVIII."

It forms a neatly printed duodecimo of two hundred and thirty-three pages, which are thus arranged: Title, as above; verso, blank,—both unpaged; iii. iv., prefatory remarks, without a heading; v. vi., "Contents"; 1 to 227, "The Federalist: addressed to the People of the State of New-York." It is printed in signatures of twelve pages each, on good paper, with a neat, but small-sized, long-primer type, (ninety-three to the foot,) probably of European make, the prefatory remarks being in pica Italics.

On Wednesday, the twenty-eighth of May, 1788, the following advertisement in The Independent Journal; or The General Advertiser, announced the publication of the second volume of the work:—

This Day is publiſhed,

The FEDERALIST,

volume second.

THIS ineſtimable Work is offered to Non-Subſcribers at the low rate of Eight Shillings the two Volumes, which contain upwards of ſix hundred Pages.

The ſeveral matters which are contained in theſe Papers, are immediately interwoven with the very exiſtence of this new Empire, and ought to be well underſtood by every Citizen of America. The Editor entertains no doubt that they will be thought by the judicious reader, the cheapeſt as well as most valuable publication ever offered to the American Public.

*⁎* Subſcribers are requeſted to ſend immediately for their Copies to the Printing-Office, No. 41, Hanover-Square, four Doors from the Corner of the Old-Slip.

☞ Thoſe Gentlemen who were intruſted with Subſcription-Liſts are requeſted to return them to the Printer immediately.

New-York, May 28, 1788.

The volume which was thus announced bears the following title:—

"The | Federalist: | a collection | of | essays, | written in favour of the | new constitution, | as agreed upon by the federal convention, | September 17, 1787. | In two volumes. | Vol. II. | New-York: | Printed and sold by J. and A. McLean, | No. 41, Hanover-Square. | M,DCC,LXXXVIII."

It forms a neatly printed duodecimo of three hundred and ninety pages, which are thus arranged: Title-page, as above; verso, blank,—both unpaged; iii. to vi., "Contents"; 1 to 365, "The Federalist: addressed to the People of the State of New-York"; 366, blank; 367 to 384, "Articles of the New Constitution; as agreed upon by the Federal Convention, September 17, 1787."

In every other respect than the number of pages it contains it is uniform in appearance with the first volume which has been already described; and both volumes are entirely without illustrations.

The text of Numbers I. to LXXVII., inclusive, which was produced in this edition of The Federalist is, with very slight alterations, that which had been previously published and circulated in the columns of the various newspapers of the day,—indeed, the "additions" thereto, which had been promised in the Proposals, are very few in number, and possess no importance whatever; that of Numbers LXXVIII. to LXXXV., inclusive, is from the author's manuscript, and is, therefore, the only authentic and authorized version of that portion of the work. The "alterations" in the earlier numbers, also, possess no interest beyond the confusion which they have produced in the numbers which are prefixed to the several essays, from Number XXIX. to the close of the work. In this new edition, the editor divided the original Number XXXI. into two distinct parts, (XXXII. and XXXIII.,) and the greater part of the original Number XXXV. he transferred, and with it formed a new Number XXIX. Of course the original Numbers XXIX. and XXX. became new Numbers XXX. and XXXI.; the original Numbers XXXI. to XXXIV., inclusive, became new Numbers XXXII. to XXXVI., inclusive; and the original Numbers XXXVI. to LXXVI. became new Numbers XXXVII. to LXXVII. From the same cause when the Numbers LXXVIII. to LXXXV. of this edition, in which, as has been stated,[11] they originally appeared, were reproduced in The Independent Journal; or, The General Advertiser, they were designated, in continuation of the series which had been commenced in that paper, Numbers LXXVII. to LXXXIV., inclusive; and there was no Number LXXXV. whatever in the latter.

At the same time that these changes in the numbers of the essays were produced by the simple "alterations" which have been referred to, the change which was made by Messrs. McLean in the mode of publishing the work, by their original publication of the latter part of it, in book-form instead of in The Independent Journal, when combined with the other cause of confusion, produced another singular result.

The original Number LXXVI. as it appeared in The Independent Journal on the second of April, 1788, was reproduced as Number LXXVII. in this first collective edition; while the original Number LXXVIII. as it appeared in this collective edition on the twenty-eighth of May was reproduced in The Independent Journal on the fourteenth of June, 1788, as Number LXXVII.; there was, therefore, no original Number LXXVII.; and the several original Numbers from LXXVIII. to LXXXV., inclusive, as they were first published in this edition, became respectively Numbers LXXVII. to LXXXIV., inclusive, in the reprint of them in the newspaper.

Such were the "alterations" which were promised in the Proposals for this edition. It requires a larger amount of unsuspecting credulity than has fallen to ordinary men to believe that the systematic mind of Colonel Hamilton ever led him and his readers into such great confusion; and the existence of that confusion confirms, if confirmation were needed on that subject, the testimony which has been received of the resolute firmness with which, to his latest days, the principal author of The Fœderalist maintained the sole authority of the original text of that work.

It remains only, in this connection, to notice the assumed authority under which the several alterations from the original text of The Fœderalist, were made by the editor of this edition of that work.

This work had been written by three persons and addressed to a particular, specified body-politic, for the purpose of inducing that body to do that which it had previously declared, informally, through the greater number of its members, individually, it would not do; and terms had been submitted, through the arguments and statements of The Fœderalist, by which it was hoped that community might become reconciled to "the new system," and approve, instead of reject, the proposed Constitution. The terms, it is said, had been accepted; the reconciliation of many members of that body-politic, it is admitted, had been effected; and "The People of the State of New York," to some extent at least, taking the interpretation, by "Publius," of that Constitution, as the true one, had determined to acquiesce in its establishment between itself and the other States of the Union. At the date of the publication of these volumes, therefore, The Fœderalist was no longer within the control of the authors themselves, much less within that of any other person. It was no longer an executory writing; it had been executed, in spirit if not in fact; and as well might the five distinguished men, or any of them, who had reported the Declaration of Independence, have undertaken, covertly, to "correct" that instrument weeks after its publication, or at any time after it had passed beyond their control, by their submission of it to the House, as the three who had submitted The Fœderalist, or any of them, to withdraw that paper or any part of it, covertly, from before the People, for "correction" or for any other purpose.

Again: when three persons jointly submit terms to other parties, on any subject whatever, a minority of the proposers, even if a majority possesses any such authority, which is not admitted, cannot properly mutilate that proposition without the assent of its associates: how, then, could Mr. Madison—the only person who has even tacitly acquiesced in any of these alterations—or either of his associates properly mutilate that to which there were other responsible parties, who had not directly consented to such mutilations?

Under these circumstances the real value of the text of this edition may be understood,—wherein it agrees with the version which was originally published by the authors and assented to by the People to whom it had been addressed it possesses value, and wherein that version has been departed from, except for the correction of obvious clerical or typographical errors, it is not trustworthy.

This neat little edition is scarce; there does not appear to be a copy of it in any public library in Boston, although it may be found in the Society and the Apprentices' Libraries, and in those of the New York Historical Society and the Mercantile Library Association, in the city of New York, of the Library Company in the city of Philadelphia, and of the Congress of the United States, in Washington. The only fine paper copy which I have examined is that in the library of the New York Historical Society.

The second edition of The Fœderalist appears to have been published in Paris, in the year 1792, with the following titles:—

"Le Fédéraliste, | ou | Collection de quelques Écrits en faveur de | la Constitution proposée aux États-Unis | de l' Amérique, par la Convention convoquée | en 1787; | Publiés dans les États-Unis de l'Amérique par | MM. Hamilton, Madisson et Gay, | Citoyens de l'État de New-York. | Tome Premier. | A Paris, | Chez Buisson, Libraire, rue Hautefeuille, | n°. 20. | 1792."

"Le Fédéraliste, | ou | Collection de quelques Écrits en faveur de | la Constitution proposée aux États-Unis | de l' Amérique, par la Convention convoquée | en 1787; | Publiés dans les États-Unis de l'Amérique par | MM. Hamilton, Madisson et Gay, | Citoyens de l'État de New-York. | Tome Second. | A Paris, | Chez Buisson, Libraire, rue Hautefeuille, | n°. 20. | 1792."

These are two small octavo volumes of four hundred and twenty-two and five hundred and thirteen pages, respectively, which are thus arranged: The first volume, Bastard-title; verso to the bastard-title, blank; title-page, as above; verso to the title-page, blank; and "Avertissement,"—all unpaged; verso to the "Avertissement," xxij. of "Constitution Des Etats-Unis"; iij. to xxj., introductory matter by the editor;[12] xxij. to xlix., "Constitution Des Etats-Unis de l'Amérique"; l. to lij., "Table des Chapitres Contenus dans ce premier Volume"; 1 to 366, "Le Fédéraliste." The second volume, Bastard-title; verso thereto, blank; title-page, as above; and verso thereto, blank,—all unpaged; 1 to 506, "Le Fédéraliste"; 507 to 511, "Table des Chapitres Contenus dans ce second Volume."

They are printed in signatures generally of sixteen pages each, designated by letters, on a thin, dark-colored paper, with type of the size then known as Cicero ordinaire,—similar to small pica,—leaded, and are without any illustrations, except head-pieces on page 1 of each volume and an occasional tail-piece.

The translator of this edition was M. Trudaine de la Sabliére; and, in addition to the elaborate Introduction already referred to, he added many judicious Notes for the illustration of different portions of the text.

The description of this edition which is here given is the result of a careful examination of the imperfect copy which is in the library of Harvard University, and of the second volume only of what appears to be the same work, which is in the library of the New York Historical Society.

In the same year (1792) another edition of Le Fédéraliste appears to have been issued in Paris by the same publisher who had issued that which was last described,—M. Buisson.

If it was not from the same forms from which the former edition had been printed, this appears to have been a careful reprint of that, even its errors having been reproduced, with the exception that the editorial introduction which M. De la Sabliére had inserted in the former was entirely omitted from this edition,—the "Constitution Des Etats-Unis de l'Amérique," on page xxij., following the unpaged "Avertissement," without any pages iij. to xxj. intervening, and without a notice concerning the omission or the causes which led to it.

The only copy of this edition of which any information has been received is that which is in the Library of the State of New York, at Albany; and the above description is the result of a careful examination of it by Alfred B. Street, Esq., of that city.

In 1795 a new edition of The Fœderalist, apparently the fourth in book-form, was published in Paris, by the same enterprising publisher who had previously issued the work, in the two editions already referred to. The following are the titles and description of this new issue:—

"Le Fédéraliste, | ou | Collection de quelques Écrits en faveur | de la Constitution proposée aux États-Unis | de l'Amérique, par la Convention convoquée | en 1787; | Publiés dans les États-Unis de l'Amérique par | MM. Hamilton, Madisson et Jay, | Citoyens de l'État de New-York. | Seconde Edition. | Tome Premier.| A Paris, | Chez Buisson, Libraire, rue Hauteseuille, | n°. 20. | An 3e. de la République."

"Le Fédéraliste, | ou | Collection de quelques Écrits en faveur | de la Constitution proposée aux États-Unis | de l'Amérique, par la Convention convoquée | en 1787; | Publiés dans les États-Unis de l'Amérique par | MM. Hamilton, Madisson et Jay, | Citoyens de l'État de New-York. | Seconde Edition. | Tome Second.| A Paris, | Chez Buisson, Libraire, rue Hauteseuille, | n°. 20. | An 3e. de la République."

This, like the last preceding edition from the same press, forms two volumes octavo, of four hundred and two and five hundred and fifteen pages, respectively, which are thus arranged: The first volume, Bastard-title; verso to bastard-title, blank; title-page, as above; verso to the title, blank; "Avertissement,"—all without page numbers; xxij. (which is verso to "Avertissement") to xlix., "Constitution Des Etats-Unis de l'Amérique"; l. to lij., "Table des Chapitres Contenus dans ce premier Volume"; 1 to 366, "Le Fédéraliste." The second volume, Bastard-title; verso to bastard-title, blank; title-page, as above; verso to the title, blank,{{—}all unpaged; 1 to 506, "Le Fédéraliste"; 507 to 511, "Table des Chapitres Contenus dans ce second Volume."

It is printed in signatures of sixteen pages each, designated by letters, on a fair quality of paper, with type of the size then known as Cicero ordinaire,—about small pica,—leaded, and is without any illustrations, except head-pieces on page 1 of each volume, and an occasional tail-piece at the ends of the numbers.

It is said that in the year 1799 a new edition of The Fœderalist, the fifth in book-form, was published by John Tiebout, in the city of New York; and that the copy which Mr. Madison used and annotated was of that edition.[13]

The most diligent search has been made for a copy of that edition, but without finding it or obtaining any other information concerning it. It is not in any of the principal public libraries, nor, so far as can be learned, is a copy of it in any private library in this part of the country. The newspapers of that period—both Fœderal and Republican—have been carefully examined, with the hope of finding the Proposals for its issue or the advertisement of its publication; personal inquiries have been made of Mr. Tiebout's sons, and of several of the older inhabitants of the city; and those whose intimate knowledge of books entitles them to the respect of every student have been applied to on the subject; yet no trace whatever, beyond the single allusion above referred to, has been obtained from any quarter, concerning this or any other edition of The Fœderalist from the press of John Tiebout. It is, nevertheless, known that such a printer lived and transacted business at No. 358 Pearl Street, in the city of New York, in the year 1799;[14] and it is far from impossible that copies of this rare edition may yet be in existence among the rubbish which has accumulated in the garrets of some of the older families of this city and its vicinity.[15]

On Wednesday, the thirteenth of January, 1802, George F. Hopkins, a bookseller doing business at No. 118 Pearl Street, in the city of New York, issued "Proposals" for publishing, by subscription, a new edition, apparently the sixth, of The Fœderalist. He proposed to revise and correct the work; to add thereto "new passages and notes"; to print it on superfine medium paper, with a neat type; and to bind it, handsomely, in two volumes, octavo, delivering it to subscribers at "Two Dollars a volume."

On Wednesday, the eighth of December, of the same year, the following advertisement, which appeared in The New York Evening Post of that date, announced the publication of the volumes:—

THE FEDERALIST.

THIS Day is Published, in two handsome octavo volumes, printed on paper of a superior quality, and elegantly bound—(Price to subscribers 2 dollars per vol. to non-subscribers 2 dollars 25 cents)

THE

FEDERALIST,

ON THE NEW CONSTITUTION,

BY PUBLIUS.

WRITTEN IN 1788

to which is added,

PACIFICUS, ON THE

PROCLAMATION OF NEUTRALITY,

written in 1793,

Likewise,

THE FEDERAL CONSTITUTION,

With all the Amendments.

Corrected and Revised.

☞ As a universal wish seemed to prevail that these valuable writings should undergo a revision, and be printed in a form that should in some measure correspond with their high claim to merit, are now offered to the public in a dress which it is believed will meet with general approbation.

GEORGE F. HOPKINS,

Washington's Head, 118 Pearl-street.

Dec 8 P & H tf

The volumes bore, respectively, the following titles:—"The | Federalist, | on the new constitution. | By Publius. | Written in 1788. | To which is added, | Pacificus, | on the proclamation of neutrality. | Written in 1793. | Likewise, | The Federal Constitution, | with all the amendments. | Revised and corrected. | In two volumes. | Vol. I. | Copy-right secured. | New-York: | Printed and sold by George F. Hopkins, | At Washington's Head. | 1802."

"The | Federalist, | on the new constitution. | By Publius. | Written in 1788. | To which is added, | Pacificus, | on the proclamation of neutrality. | Written in 1793. | Likewise, | The Federal Constitution, | with all the amendments. | Revised and corrected. | In two volumes. | Vol. II. | Copy-right secured. | New-York: | Printed and sold by George F. Hopkins, | At Washington's Head. | 1802."

This edition of The Federalist forms two neat octavos, of three hundred and twenty-eight[16] and three hundred and fifty-nine pages, respectively, which are thus arranged: In Volume I., Title-page, as above; verso to the title, blank,—both unpaged; iii. to vi., "Preface"; vii. viii., "Contents of the first volume"; 1 to 317, "The Federalist"; 318, "Erratum." In Volume II., Title-page, as above; verso to the title, blank,—both unpaged; iii. to v., "Contents of the second volume"; vi., blank; vii., "Valuable Books," which the publisher offered for sale; viii., blank; 1 to 283, "The Federalist"; 284, blank; 285, unpaged bastard-title of "Letters of Pacificus"; 286, blank; 287 to 334, "Letters"; 335 to 349, "The Federal Constitution, as agreed upon by the Convention, September 17, 1787"; 350, 351, "Amendments."

It is printed in signatures of eight pages each, on paper of good quality, with a clear long-primer type, leaded,—the Preface being in pica, leaded; and it is without illustrations of any kind.

This edition is remarkable, chiefly, on account of the great changes in the text which the anonymous editor saw fit to make, which, both in their extent and their character, from the rarity of the original edition and that of 1788, have been little understood.

It is not certainly known by whom this edition of The Fœderalist was edited; but Mr. Coleman, in his discussion with "Corrector," concerning the authorship of the several numbers, has thrown considerable light on the subject. In his "Answer" to that writer, published in The New York Evening Post on the twenty-fifth of March, 1817, that gentleman refers to different circumstances which had attended the preparation of this edition for the press, with the greatest particularity; and in one case, especially, he alludes to his own personal knowledge of the subject. As the private, personal interviews of that anonymous editor with General Hamilton on the subject of his editorial labors, the personal views of the former on the relative merits of the three authors of the work, and the identical words which General Hamilton had dictated to him, to be employed instead of his own in the Preface of the work, concerning the merits of Mr. Madison and Mr. Jay in the original authorship of the numbers, were known to Mr. Coleman in all their minutiæ; and as it can scarcely be credited that any other person than the editor himself was, or could be, personally acquainted with all these circumstances, it appears highly probable that Mr. Coleman himself was the "gentleman of competent literary talents" who had undertaken "to make the first verbal corrections" in the original text, to which he referred. There are other circumstances connected with this subject which confirm this view of it, and indicate Mr. Coleman as the anonymous editor of this edition, not the least of which are the flagrant violations, by that editor, of the positive instructions which, according to Mr. Coleman, General Hamilton had given for his guidance in making the "corrections" referred to.

Concerning the "corrections" which were introduced into the text of The Fœderalist by the editor of this edition of that work, the general remarks which have been made concerning the alterations which were introduced into the first collective edition are entirely applicable and need not be repeated,—that no person, even the distinguished authors themselves, had they been disposed to do so, could have made, or have authorized others to make, any alterations whatever in the original text. But, in the instance now under consideration, there is another and special reason why the "corrections" of that text which were made by the editor of this edition are untrustworthy,—Mr. Hopkins, its publisher, has expressly acknowledged to two different gentlemen that General Hamilton had positively forbidden any alteration whatever from the original text;[17] nor can any statement by Mr. Coleman, in his own defence, whether he had made the alterations himself, or not, purge them from deserved contempt, so long as a copy of the original edition remains to prove that General Hamilton's acknowledged instruction, that "the original idea was to be strictly adhered to,"[18] was repeatedly and flagrantly violated by the editor referred to.

The more important of the "corrections" which were made by the editor of this edition will be noticed in the Notes which form the second volume of this work.

This edition is not very scarce; the copy which has been used in the preparation of this work is that which is in the library of the New York Historical Society.

The seventh edition of The Fœderalist, in book-form, was published in 1810, with the following title:—

"The | Federalist, | on the new constitution; | written in 1788, | by Mr.Hamilton, Mr. Jay, and Mr. Madison. | To which is added | Pacificus, | on the proclamation of neutrality; | written in 1793,| by Mr. Hamilton. | A new edition, with the names and portraits of the several writers. | In two volumes. | Vol. I. | New-York: | Published by Williams & Whiting, | at their theological and classical bookstore, | No. 118, Pearl-street. | Printed by J. Seymour. | 1810."

"The | Federalist, | on the new constitution; | written in 1788, | by Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Jay, and Mr. Madison. | To which is added, | Pacificus, | on the proclamation of neutrality; | written in 1793, | by Mr. Hamilton. | A new edition, with the names and portraits of the several writers. | In two volumes. | Vol. II. | New-York: | Published by Williams & Whiting, | at their theological and classical bookstore, | No. 118, Pearl-street. | Printed by J. Seymour. | 1810."

This edition of The Fœderalist, in two volumes, small octavo, forms the second and third volumes of The Works of Alexander Hamilton,—a neatly printed selection from the writings of that gentleman, which was prepared for the press under the editorial supervision of John Wells, Esq., a learned member of the bar of New York, and an intimate friend of their distinguished author. It was, probably, the fourth American collective edition of the work; and the editor, in the preparation of the text, appears to have followed, with few and unimportant variations, the text of the third edition, which has been already noticed.

As before stated, it forms two small octavo volumes, each of which contains three hundred and seventy-four pages, which are arranged as follows: The running-title of The Works of Alexander Hamilton, and verso, blank, inserted and not paged; the title which belongs to the volume; verso of title-page, copyright certificate,— both unpaged; iii. iv., "Contents"; 1 to 368, "The Federalist." It is printed, very neatly, in signatures of eight pages each, from a small size of small-pica type, leaded, on paper of a very good quality; and it is illustrated with very fine portraits, by Leney, that of General Hamilton, after Ames, being in the first volume of The Works, that of Chief-Justice Jáy, after Stuart, in the second (Volume I. of The Federalist), and that of Mr. Madison, also after Stuart, in the third (Volume II. of the latter work).

The distinguishing feature of this edition is the use which the editor made of his information concerning the authorship of the several numbers,—acquired either from General Hamilton, directly, or from the memorandum which the latter had left in Judge Benson's office; and it is, consequently, the first American edition in which the names of the several writers appear, in connection with the respective numbers of the work.

This edition is not rare; and the description which has been given of it is the result of an examination of a copy which is in the private library of the Editor.

In 1817, another edition of The Federalist, probably the eighth in book-form, appeared. The following is its title:—

"The | Federalist, | on the new constitution; | written in 1788, | by Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Jay, and Mr. Madison. | A new edition, | with the names and portraits of the several writers. | Philadelphia: | Published by Benjamin Warner, No. 147, Market Street. | William Greer. .. Printer. ... Harrisburg. | 1817."

This edition forms a single octavo volume of four hundred and seventy-seven pages, which are thus arranged: Title, as above; verso of title, certificate of copyright, the same which was granted to Williams and Whiting for the first volume of the edition of 1810,—both unpaged; iii. to vi., "Contents"; 7 to 477, "The Federalist."

It is printed in signatures of eight pages each, on paper of a coarse texture, with long-primer type which appears to have been considerably worn; and it is illustrated with portraits of the authors,—Hamilton opposite the title, Madison opposite Number XIV. (page 70), and Jáy opposite Number LIV. (page 294),—from the same plates, by Leney, which were used by Williams and Whiting in the edition of 1810, with no other alteration than the erasure of the words "Printed by A. G. Reynolds," which had appeared on the original plates.

From the similarity of the copyright certificate, and from the use of the same engraved plates to illustrate the volume, as well as from a comparison of the notes and text generally, it is evident that this is a reproduction of the New York edition of 1810, which had been published by Williams and Whiting, with the acknowledged errors of that edition, in the designation of the several authors.

This description is the result of a careful examination of a copy which is in the library of Daniel P. Smith, Esq., of Bedford, Long Island.

In the following year, (1818,) the same publisher issued another edition with this title:—

"The | Federalist, | on the new Constitution; | written in 1788, | by Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Jay, and Mr. Madison. | A new edition, | with the names and portraits of the several writers. | Philadelphia: | Published by Benjamin Warner, No. 147, Market Street, | and sold at his stores, Richmond, Virginia, | and Charleston, South Carolina. | 1818."

This edition forms a single octavo volume of five hundred and four pages, which are thus disposed: title, as above; verso of title-page, certificate of copyright, the same which had been granted to Williams and Whiting for the first volume of the edition of 1810,—both unpaged; iii. to vi., "Contents"; 7 to 477 "The Federalist"; 478, blank; 479 to 504, "Appendix," containing Articles of Confederation, and the Constitution for the United States, with the Amendments.

It is printed in signatures of eight pages each, on a fair quality of paper, with long-primer type, and is illustrated with the portraits of the authors, from the same plates, by Leney, which have been referred to before, and disposed of in precisely the same manner as in the edition of 1817, by the same publisher.

It is very evident that this edition is from the same forms or plates which had been used in the printing of that which had been issued in the preceding year by the same publisher, with the addition of an "Appendix," which the former—probably a cheaper issue—had not contained.

This description is the result of a careful examination, by Charles C. Jewett, Esq., of a copy which is in the Public Library, in the city of Boston.

Early in the year 1818, "Proposals" were issued for the publication of a new edition of The Fœderalist, probably the tenth. The following is a copy of the "Proposals" referred to:—

[From the National Intelligencer, Vol. XVIII. No. 2696, Washington, Thursday, January 1, 1818.]
PROPOSALS,

BY JACOB GIDEON, Junr. Printer, of the City of Washington, for publishing, by subscription, a new edition of the

"Federalist,"

On the new Constitution and Proclamation of Neutrality, written in the years 1788 and 1793,

under the signatures of Publius and Pacificus, by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay, Esqs. to which will be added, the Constitution of the United States, and the different amendments which have been made to it since its adoption, to the close of the year 1817.

The merit of this work must be known to every Politician and Statesman in the United States. Written by men of high standing, extensive information, and acknowledged talents, and embracing subjects of the deepest political interest, it cannot but be valuable to every American who admires and loves the government under which it is his happy destiny to live. To foreigners, too, the "Federalist" is equally important, as it enables them more perfectly to comprehend the nature and principles of the American Constitution, which is the wonder of the world, and will be the admiration of posterity. In addition to the importance of the matters discussed, the style in which the various numbers of the "Federalist" are written, is almost of itself a sufficient recommendation to obtain for it a place in every gentleman's library. From these considerations, and the present scarcity of the work, the publisher has been induced to undertake the publication of a new edition of this valuable production; and he promises to discharge that undertaking, if he meets with proper encouragement, in a manner that he doubts not will be entirely satisfactory to the public. Having been furnished with the names of the writers of the different numbers from a source which cannot be questioned, he will attach the author's name to each number,

that the reader may know, without difficulty, by whom it was written.

It will be put to press about the middle of April next, and be ready for delivery in November following.

TERMS.

1. The work will be printed in one octavo volume, containing about 600 pages.

2. It will be printed on good pica type, and on medium paper of superior quality, made expressly for the purpose.

3. It will be delivered to subscribers at $3 per copy, in boards; or $3 75, full bound in calf, payable on the delivery of the work.

4. If any subscribers are displeased with the execution of the work, when completed, they shall be at liberty to withdraw their names.

5. Booksellers subscribing for 50 or more copies, will receive a liberal discount.

6. To non-subscribers the price will be $3 50 in boards, and $4 75 full bound.

Jan 1—3t

During the summer of 1818 the proposed volume appeared, with the following title:—

"The | Federalist, | on | the new constitution, | written in | the year 1788, | by | Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Madison, and Mr. Jay | with | an appendix, | containing | the letters of Pacificus and Helvidius, | on the proclamation of neutrality of 1793; | also, the | original articles of confederation, | and | the constitution of the United States, | with the | amendments made thereto. | A new edition. | The numbers written by Mr. Madison corrected by himself. | City of Washington: | Printed and published by Jacob Gideon, Jun. | 1818."

It forms a fine thick octavo volume of six hundred and seventy-one pages, which are thus arranged: Title, as above; verso to the title, copyright certificate to Jacob Gideon, Junior,—both unpaged; 3 to 7, "Prefatory Remarks," dated "City of Washington, May, 1818"; 8, blank; 9 to 550, "The Federalist"; 551 to 593, "Appendix. The Letters of Pacificus. By Alexander Hamilton"; 594 to 638, "The Letters of Helvidius. By James Madison"; 639 to 650, "The original articles of confederation"; 651 to 671, "Constitution of the United States."

It is printed in signatures of eight pages each, on paper of good quality, with a fine full-faced pica type, solid,—the "Prefatory Remarks" with a fine clean bourgeois, leaded,—and is entirely without illustrations.

This description is the result of a careful examination of the copy which is in the private library of Samuel L. M. Barlow, Esq., in the city of New York.

In the year 1826 an edition of The Fœderalist, probably the eleventh, was published at Hallowell, of which the following is a copy of the title-page:—

"The | Federalist, | on | the new constitution, | written in | the year 1788, | by | Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Madison, and Mr. Jay: | with | an appendix, | containing | the letters of Pacificus and Helvidius, | on the | proclamation of neutrality of 1793; | also, the | original articles of confederation, | and the | constitution of the United States, | with the | amendments made thereto. | A new edition. | The numbers written by Mr. Madison corrected by himself. | Hallowell, (Me.): | Printed and published by Glazier & Co. | 1826."

It forms a large octavo volume, of five hundred and eighty-two pages, which are thus arranged: Title-page, as above; verso of the title-page, with certificate of copyright granted to Jacob Gideon, Junior, in 1818,— both unpaged; 3 to 6, "Prefatory Remarks"; 7 to 493, "The Federalist"; 494 to 525, "Appendix. The Letters of Pacificus, by Alexander Hamilton"; 526 to 558, "The Letters of Helvidius, by James Madison"; 559 to 567, "The original Articles of Confederation"; 568 to 582, "Constitution of the United States."

It is printed in signatures of sixteen pages each, on paper of a fair quality, with a small size of small-pica type, leaded, and is not illustrated. The running-titles at the heads of the pages are in small capital letters; the titles of the respective numbers are in capitals,—"No. LXXX."; the contents of the numbers are in Italics; and the "Prefatory Remarks" are in small pica, solid.

This description is the result of a careful examination of a copy in the library of Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, compared with one in the library of the American Institute, in the city of New York.

In 1827, it is said, another edition of The Fœderalist was published at Hallowell, but every effort to find a copy of it has proved fruitless.

The catalogue of the library of the State of New York, at Albany, alludes to the existence, in that collection, of a copy of this edition; but Mr. H. A. Homes, the assistant librarian in charge of that department, has not been able to find it during the ten years which he has spent in the institution, nor has a copy been found elsewhere, notwithstanding a diligent search has been instituted for that purpose in various directions.[19]

In 1831 it appears that another edition, probably the thirteenth in book-form, was published in Hallowell; but, like that which was last referred to, a copy has not been found.

The catalogue of the library of the American Institute, in New York, mentions it as one of the editions in that collection; but it appears that it was taken from the library, many years since, by a member who has since deceased, and was never recovered.

In 1831, an edition of The Fœderalist, probably the fourteenth, was published at Washington, D. C., with the following title:—

"The | Federalist, | on | The New Constitution, | written in | the year 1788, | by | Alexander Hamilton, James Madison & John Jay, | with an appendix, | containing the original articles of confederation; the | letter of General Washington, as President of the | Convention, to the President of Congress; the Consti- | tution of the United States, and the amendments to | the Constitution. | A new edition, | with a table of contents, | and | a copious alphabetical index. | The numbers written by Mr. Madison corrected by himself. | Washington: | Published by Thompson & Homans. | Way & Gideon, Printers, | 1831."

It forms a duodecimo volume of four hundred and twenty-six pages, which are thus arranged: Title-page, as above; verso to the title-page, notice of copyright entered in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the District of Columbia by Thompson & Homans,—both unpaged; iii. to vii., "Contents"; viii., blank; 3 to 5, "Prefatory Remarks"; 6 to 380, "The Federalist"; 381 to 404, "Appendix"; 405 to 420, "Index."

It is printed in signatures of twelve pages, with brevier type, solid,—the "Prefatory Remarks" being in minion, solid,—on paper of poor quality and rather dingy in appearance; and it is not illustrated.

With the exception of three paragraphs of the "Prefatory Remarks," which have been omitted in this edition, of the transfer of the name of its author from the head of each number to its foot, where it is inserted in Italics, enclosed in brackets, after the general signature of "Publius," and of the addition, at the close of the volume, of a copious alphabetical index to the work, this edition is a careful reprint of that which had been issued at Washington, in 1818; indeed, so closely does it follow that edition, that it was considered a violation of the copyright of Mr. Gideon, by Messrs. Glazier & Co., of Hallowell, to whom that right had been assigned, and by whom it had been exercised in the issue of at least one edition, as already noticed.

The peculiarity of this edition of The Fœderalist is the elaborate index of sixteen pages, which was prepared for it by Philip R. Fendall, a member of the Washington bar,—an appendage which renders it the most useful of the fourteen collective editions which, it is probable, had then appeared.

This description is the result of a very careful examination of the copy which is in the library of the Congress of the United States, at Washington, by A. R. Spofford, Esq., its assistant librarian.

In the year 1837, Glazier, Masters and Smith, of Hallowell, Maine, published another edition of the work, probably the fifteenth, with the following title:—

"The | Federalist, | on | the new constitution, | written in the year 1788, | by | Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Madison, and Mr. Jay: | with | an appendix, | containing | the letters of Pacificus and Helvidius | on the | proclamation of neutrality of 1793; | also, | the original articles of confederation, and the | constitution of the United States, | with the amendments made thereto. | A new edition. | The numbers written by Mr. Madison corrected by himself. | Hallowell: | Glazier, Masters & Smith. | 1837."

It forms a fine octavo volume of five hundred pages, which are thus arranged: Title, as above; verso, blank,—both unpaged; 3 to 6, "Prefatory Remarks"; 7 to 413, "The Federalist"; 414 to 442, "Appendix. The letters of Pacificus. By Alexander Hamilton"; 443 to 472, "The letters of Helvidius. By James Madison"; 473 to 480, "The original articles of confederation"; 481 to 494, "Constitution of the United States"; 495 to 500, "Index."

It is printed in signatures of twelve pages each, with small-pica type, solid,—the "Prefatory Remarks" being in long primer, leaded, the "Appendix" in long primer, solid, and the "Index" in brevier, leaded; and it is entirely without illustrations.

Like all the Hallowell editions, it is a careful reprint of the edition published by Mr. Gideon in 1818.

This description is the result of an examination of the copy which is in the Astor Library, in the city of New York.

In 1842, another edition, probably the sixteenth, was issued by the same press, at Hallowell, which has been already so often mentioned in this work. The following is the title of the edition referred to:—

"The | Federalist, | on | the new constitution, | written in 1788, | by | Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Madison, and Mr. Jay: | with | an appendix, | containing the letters of Pacificus and Helvidius | on the | proclamation of neutrality of 1793; | also, | the original articles of confederation, | and the | constitution of the United States. | A new edition. | The numbers written by Mr. Madison corrected by himself. | Hallowell: | Glazier, Masters, & Smith. | 1842."

It forms an octavo volume of four hundred and eighty-four pages, which are thus arranged: Title-page, as above; and verso to title-page, blank,—both unpaged; 3 to 6, "Prefatory Remarks"; 7 to 404, "The Federalist"; 405 to 431, "Appendix. The Letters of Pacificus"; 432 to 459, "The Letters of Helvidius"; 460 to 466, "Original Articles of Confederation"; 467 to 479, "Constitution of the United States"; 480 to 484, "Index."

It is printed in signatures of sixteen pages each, with small-pica type, solid,—the "Prefatory Remarks" in long primer, leaded, the "Appendix" in long primer, solid, and the "Index" in brevier, solid,—on paper of fair quality; and it is entirely without illustrations.

This description is the result of an examination by Samuel G. Drake, Esq., of Boston, of a copy which is in his library.

An edition of The Fœderalist, "which should combine the typographical convenience of the edition of 1818, with the additional matter of that of 1831, seeming to be called for by the general voice," in September, 1845, Messrs. J. & G. S. Gideon, of Washington, appear to have responded by publishing an edition, probably the seventeenth in book-form, possessing the peculiar features which had been thus demanded by the public, and with the additional one of "some improvements in the Index" which had previously appeared.

In none of the libraries which have been examined while searching for materials for this work does this edition find a place; and, beyond the indefinite remarks of the "Advertisement" which have been quoted above, no account of it whatever has been obtained.

In 1847, a new edition, probably the eighteenth, of The Fœderalist was published at Philadelphia, with the following title:—

"The | Federalist, | on | the new constitution, | written in | the year 1788, | by | Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay. | With an appendix, | containing | the letters of Pacificus and Helvidius on the proclamation of neu- | trality of 1793; the original articles of confederation; the let- | ter of General Washington, as president of the convention, | to the president of congress; the constitution of the | United States; the amendments to the constitution; | and the act of congress in relation to the elec- | tion of President, passed January 23, 1845. | Sixth edition, | with | a copious alphabetical index. | The numbers written by Mr. Madison corrected by himself. | Philadelphia: | R. Wilson Desilver, 18 South Fourth Street. | 1847."

It forms an octavo volume of five hundred and two pages, which are thus arranged: Title-page, as above; verso to title-page, blank; "Advertisement," signed "J. & G. S. Gideon," and dated "Washington, September, 1845"; verso, blank,—all unpaged; iii. to v., "Contents"; vi., blank; 1 to 356, "The Federalist"; 357 to 364, "Appendix. The original articles of confederation"; 365, the letter which General Washington addressed, as President of the Fœderal Convention, to the President of the Congress, when he forwarded the new Constitution to the latter body; 366, blank; 367 to 380, "Constitution of the United States," to which is appended the "Act to establish a uniform time for holding elections for electors of President and Vice President in all the States of the Union," approved January 23, 1845; 381 to 391, "Index to the Federalist"; 392, blank; full page title to the letters of Pacificus and Helvidius, with the imprint, "Washington: Printed and published by J. and G. S. Gideon. 1845"; verso to the title-page, blank; "Proclamation of neutrality, April 22, 1793"; verso to the "Proclamation," blank,—the last four unpaged; 5 to 102, "Letters of Pacificus and Helvidius, on the Proclamation of President Washington."

The text and "Appendix" of this edition are printed in signatures of sixteen pages each, with a small-sized small-pica type, solid,—the "Contents" and "Index" in brevier, solid, the "Letters of Pacificus and Helvidius" in pica, leaded,—on paper of fair quality; and it is without any illustrations.

This is probably a reprint of the edition of J. & G. S. Gideon, 1845, including the alphabetical index; and it forms a very useful volume for general use.

In 1852, another edition of The Fœderalist, probably the nineteenth, appeared at Hallowell. The following is a copy of the title-page of this edition:—

"The | Federalist, | on | the new Constitution, | written in 1788, | by | Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Madison, and Mr. Jay: | with | an Appendix, | containing the | Letters of Pacificus and Helvidius | on the | Proclamation of Neutrality of 1793; | also, | the original articles of confederation, | and the | Constitution of the United States. | New Edition: | the numbers written by Mr. Madison corrected by himself. | Hallowell: | Masters, Smith & Company | 1852."

It forms an octavo of four hundred and ninety-six pages, which are thus arranged: The title-page, as above; and verso to the title-page, blank,—both unpaged; iii. to vi., "Prefatory Remarks"; 7 to 404, "The Federalist"; 405 to 431, "Appendix. The Letters of Pacificus. By Alexander Hamilton"; 432 to 459, "The Letters of Helvidius. By James Madison"; 460 to 466, "The original articles of Confederation"; 467 to 479, "Constitution of the United States"; 480, blank; 481 to 496, "Index."

It is printed in signatures of eight pages each, with long-primer type,—the "Prefatory Remarks" and "Appendix " being printed with bourgeois, and the "Index" with brevier,—on paper of fair quality; and it is without any illustrations.

The Index refers by Roman numerals to the successive numbers. The headings of the several essays follow on the same lines in small capitals, a copious analysis of each essay being given below.

This description is the result of an examination, under the direction of C. C. Jewett, Esq., of the copy which is in the Public Library, in the city of Boston.

In 1857, the twentieth edition of The Fœderalist appeared at Hallowell. It formed a neat octavo volume, the title-page of which is as follows:—

"The | Federalist, | on the | new constitution, | written in 1788. | By | Mr. Hamilton, Mr. Madison, and Mr. Jay: | with | an appendix, | containing the letters of | Pacificus and Helvidius | on the | proclamation of neutrality of 1793; | also, | the original articles of confederation, | and the | constitution of the United States. | New edition: | the numbers written by Mr. Madison corrected by himself. | Hallowell: | Masters, Smith, & Co. | 1857."

It forms a neat volume of four hundred and ninety-six pages, which are arranged as follows: The title-page, as above; and verso to the title-page, blank,—both unpaged; iii. to vi., "Prefatory Remarks"; 7 to 404, "The Federalist"; 405 to 431, "Appendix. The Letters of Pacificus. By Alexander Hamilton"; 432 to 459, "The Letters of Helvidius. By James Madison"; 460 to 466, "The original articles of confederation"; 467 to 479, "Constitution of the United States"; 480, blank; 481 to 496, "Index."

It is printed in signatures of eight pages each, with small-pica type, solid,—the "Prefatory Remarks" in long primer, leaded, the "Appendix" and the "Index" in long primer, solid,—on paper of fair quality; and it is entirely without illustrations.

Like all the editions which had preceded it from that press, it was a careful reprint of the edition of Mr. Gideon, Washington, 1818.

It is not impossible that other collective editions of The Fœderalist, beside the twenty here referred to, have sometime been issued from the press in America or Europe; but a careful search through the various public and many of the private libraries in this vicinity, and as careful an examination of the catalogues of various libraries in more distant parts of our own country and in Europe, have failed to produce any evidence of the existence of any other edition or impression.

A new edition, probably the twenty-first in book-form, differing in its text from all others except the originals, and possessing other features which are even more peculiar to itself than its text, is contained in these volumes.

It is the result of a careful examination of the work, in its various forms, editions, and versions, and of a long-continued and anxious study of the important subject on which it treats; it is confidently believed, therefore, that in no other form or edition has The Fœderalist been issued with greater correctness in the text, or with more useful and important apparatus for the use of the student and scholar.

In thus bespeaking for this edition of The Fœderalist the entire confidence of the reader, the Editor is actuated by no other motive than a desire to promote a general knowledge of the true principles of the Government of the United States; and as the learned John Selden once said, on a similar occasion, with equal sincerity he can say on this:—"He that knoweth the secrets of all Mens Hearts, doth know that my aim in this work is neither at Scepter or Crosier, nor after Popular Dotage, but that Justice and Truth may moderate in all. This is a Vessel, I confess, ill and weakly built, yet doth it adventure into the vast Ocean of your Censures, Gentlemen, who are Antiquaries, Lawyers, and Historians; any one of whom might have steered in this course much better than my self. Had my own credit been the freight, I must have expected nothing less than wreck and loss of all; but the main design of this Voyage being for discovery of the true nature of this Government to common view, I shall ever account your just Censures and Contradictions (especially published with their grounds) to be my most happy return, and as a Crown to this Work: And that my labour hath its full reward, if others, taking advantage by my imperfections, shall beautify my Country with a more perfect and lively Character."

H. B. D.

Notes[edit]

  1. It may interest the reader to know that the young man with whom General Hamilton conversed when he visited Judge Benson's office, on the occasion referred to in the text, is now the venerable and respected Robert Benson, Esq., of No. 36 East Twenty-second Street, in the city of New York; and that, through the kind attention of his brother, my esteemed friend Egbert Benson, Esq., I am indebted to him for the minute statement which I have given concerning that remarkable visit.

    The volume in which Judge Benson wafered the original memorandum of General Hamilton,—on the inside of the cover of which the remains of the wafers are still to be seen,—and the Judge's copy of that memorandum, on the fly-leaf of the volume, through Mr. Benson's kindness have been shown to me; and what in the text I have said concerning them is the result of a careful examination of them by myself.

  2. This letter was reproduced in Hall's American Law Journal, Vol. VI. pp. 460, 461, the learned editor of which, in the index, added to his reference to it the following: "Note.—The accuracy of this article has been denied by William Coleman, Esq., whose intimacy with General Hamilton entitles his opinion to great respect. He has promised to give some information, from which our statement may be corrected hereafter."
  3. In Volume II. of the Repository, (page 173,) Mr. Delaplaine contradicted this statement concerning the authorship of The Fœderalist, as well as the two statements which General Hamilton had left respectively in his own copy of the work and in the office of Judge Benson. It is evident that while the material employed in the first volume had been received from the friends of General Hamilton, that used in the second was obtained from Mr. Jáy or his friends; and that the difference arose from the imperfect recollection of one of those gentlemen concerning the authorship of "No. 64."
  4. "This renders the edition of Hopkins, the most valuable extant."—Evening Post.
  5. I avail myself of this opportunity to express my sense of the very great obligation which I am under to Mr. Rush for the kindness with which he responded to my request for carefully prepared copies of the important papers to which reference has been made.
  6. "2d of this Edition."—Benj. Rush.
  7. While the proofs of this sheet were in my hands, I was favored by A. R. Spofford, Esq., assistant librarian of Congress, with very carefully prepared copies of the manuscript memoranda which Mr. Madison made in his own copy of The Fœderalist, that described by Mr. Elliot, in the Washington City Gazette of February 2, 1818, to which reference will be made in the text, (post, p. lii.,)—and they agree, in every respect, with those which he made in the copy belonging to Mr. Rush, as described in the letter.

    For the privilege of using the memoranda referred to I am indebted to the venerable General Peter Force, of Washington, in whose invaluable collection a careful copy of them has been preserved.

  8. The only file of the Washington City Gazette which I have heard of—that in the library of the New York Historical Society—does not contain a single number of an earlier date than January 3d, 1818; and as the only copy of the article referred to in the text which I have found—that which appeared in The New York Commercial Advertiser of December 17th, 1817—is evidently imperfect, I have been obliged to omit this portion of the discussion.
  9. "A mistake for 64."—Evening Post.
  10. This Prospectus is copied from The Daily Advertiser, Vol. IV. No. 893, New York, Thursday, January 3, 1788.
  11. Ante, page xxiii.
  12. As I have not found a perfect copy of this edition I am unable to describe the character of the whole of this Introduction. Rich refers to it in his Bibliotheca Americana Nova, (Vol. I. pages 380, 381,) but gives no description of it; and in the only copy of Le Fédéraliste in which any portion of it is to be found, of which I can hear,—that in the library of Harvard University,—there are only five pages of it (xvij. to xxj.). These embrace "reasons why America has adopted and will retain the Fœderal form of government, and why the translator has not corrected the Essays."
  13. Editorial in the Washington City Gazette, February 2, 1818, ante, p. lii.
  14. New York Directory for 1799, p. 365
  15. While this sheet was passing through the press, I heard of what appears to be a copy of the edition here referred to, in the collection of General Peter Force, of Washington, D. C., and from that it appears, in the language of a gentleman who examine it, that "it is certainly neither a new edition, nor even a reprint of the first, of 1788, but it is the edition of 1788, with a new title-page printed and bound, so that it bears Tiebout's imprint and the date of 1799, instead of McLean's imprint and the date of 1788." The description of the volumes which bear Tiebout's imprint is identical with that of the volumes which bear McLean's imprint.
  16. There are two pages each of 167 and 168 in this volume.
  17. "Hopkins, printer, said to me, 'I called upon Mr. H[amilton] for permission to reprint the Nos. of The Federalist. He intimated that they hardly deserved to be printed again; he said he would think of it, but that they must not be reproduced without his assent.' Hopkins said 'I will present the proofs to you for correction.' Hamilton said 'No, if reprinted, it must be exactly as they were written.' J. A. H." —Memorandum in Hon. James A. Hamilton's copy of the work, communicated to the Editor of this edition, by that gentleman, February 10, 1862.
    "While on this topic, the decease of Hamilton, I may state an anecdote, the import of which can be readily understood. It was not long prior to the time of his death that the new and authentic edition of The Federalist was published by George F. Hopkins. Hopkins told me of the delicacy of which Hamilton listened to his proposition to print a new edition of these papers. 'They are demanded by the spirit of the times and the desire of the people,' said Hopkins, 'Do you really think, Mr. Hopkins, that those fugitive essays will be read, if reprinted?' asked Hamilton; 'well, give me a few days to consider,' said he. 'Will this not be a good opportunity, Gen. Hamilton,' rejoined Hopkins, 'to revise them, and, if so, to make, perhaps, alterations, if necessary, in some parts?' 'No, sir, if reprinted, they must stand exactly as at first, not a word of alteration. A comma may be inserted or left out, but the work must undergo no change whatever.'"—Reminiscences of Printers, Authors, etc., in New York, an Oration delivered at the Printers' Banquet, January 16, 1852, by John W. Francis, M.D., LL.D.
  18. Mr. Coleman's "Answer" to the letter of "Corrector," in The New York Evening Post, March 25, 1817.
  19. Mr. Homes has suggested the possibility that the date which appears in the catalogue may be a typographical error, and that it may allude to a copy of the edition of 1837, which is in the library.
    This suggestion is supported by doubts concerning the publication of an edition at Hallowell in 1827, which have been communicated to the Editor by Masters, Smith, & Co., the successors in business of Glazier & Co., who, if such an edition appeared, were the publishers of the work. As the volume has been referred to in different editions of the catalogue, notwithstanding these doubts, I have not felt at liberty to disregard it.