On the 20th Inst. I was Honored with your Favor by Captain Meeds; those by the way of Virginia have not yet come to hand.
The power of Language is insufficient to describe the satisfaction experienced on this occasion; be assured I shall seize with avidity the pleasing proposition, and use every exertion in my power, that may be founded on the principles of Honor, to effect a purpose in itself so laudable and Essentially necessary for the welfare of the United States, as also the security of those unalienable rights and priviledges of mankind——
I have viewed with astonishment the blind enthusiasm of the intoxicated multitude in those States who have adopted, the new plan of Government, rejoicing with empty parade in a measure that may prove their total ruin and everlasting disgrace.
Fearful apprehensions has frequently exercised my troubled mind, when I discovered the rapid progress of the proposed System, lest similar to a raging torrent, it should burst over all bounds of opposition and restraint, and consign to oblivion the boasted prviliedges of this once happy Country—-
I confess my expectations on New-York were sanguine, from the small knowledge I had acquired of the disposition of that State in general, and a slight acquaintance with some of the leading Characters; (although you are not destitute of Gentlemen who thirst for domination) Yet I am happy to find that my expectations on that head were well founded—
Virginia has also shared a part of my confidence, with a mixture of Despondency lest their Judgment should be led astray by the luster of that shining Character who presided in the Convention.
With respect to the politics of North Carolina, my observations are founded more on current report and private opinion than certain knowledge, and just information, with the Circle of my acquaintance there is a decided majority against the adoption of the proposed Government, and by current report it is the case throughout the State, which I believe to be true, from the knowledge I have of the disposition of the members in general. The Attorneys, Merchants, and Aristocratic part of the community are in favor of the adoption with a few exceptions, but the body of the people, I may venture to say, are much opposed to the measure. Many of our Leading Characters have lost their Election by declaring their Sentiments in favor of the new System, while others shared the same fate through suspicion.
I have wrote to some of the Neighbouring Counties and sent part of the pamphlets, I have proposed a Committee which is to meet next Saturday, at which period (I flatter myself), we shall enter into a correspondence with your Committee, and give an answer to their proposals. Should I give my opinion as an individual it appears to me advisable that the amendments proposed should originate from Your Quarter for several reasons which I forebear to [enumerate?] Please to accept my sincere acknowledgments for the pamphlets, Communication, and polite address.
1. Pamphlets may have been Additional Number of Letters from the Federal Farmer to the Republican, Luther Martin’s Genuine Information, or Mercy Warren “A Columbian Patriot” or “A Plebeian.”
John P. Kaminski and Gaspare J. Saladino, eds., The Documentary history of the Ratification of the Constitution Vol. 27 Commentaries on the Constitution Public and Private Vol. 6 (Madison, WI, 1995), 53-55.