Our Collection

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

Hamilton, Alexander (1757-1804) to Nathaniel Appleton

High-resolution images are available to schools and libraries via subscription to American History, 1493-1943. Check to see if your school or library already has a subscription. Or click here for more information. You may also order a pdf of the image from us here.

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC01557 Author/Creator: Hamilton, Alexander (1757-1804) Place Written: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Type: Letter signed Date: 27 September 1791 Pagination: 2 p. ; 23 x 19 cm.

Summary of Content: Hamilton writes as the Secretary of the Treasury to Appleton as the Massachusetts Commissioner of Loans to correct a practice of his that was resulting in late payments against debts of the United States.

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

Full Transcript: Treasury Department
Sept. 27 1791

Sir

You observe in your letter of the first instant which did not strike me on the first perusal, or it would have been sooner noticed that "...you think it probable the sum remitted will be sufficient for the payment of the next quarter's interest, though it must be matter of conjecture only till the close of the loan."

The last clause leads me to conclude, that you have misapprehended a late instruction of the Comptroller, directing you to continue to receive subscriptions to the several loans to the end of the month. But this was not meant to alter the preceding instruction, to close your books as to transfers fourteen days previous to the termination of each quarter, and to make up your dividends of interest according to the then states of the stock on your books. Any deviation from this rule will necessarily interfere with the punctuality of payment, and with the order of the business, and will be particularly unfortunate.

With consideration, I am, Sir,
Your obedient Servant
Alexander Hamilton
See More

People: Hamilton, Alexander, 1757-1804
Appleton, Nathaniel, 1731-1798

Historical Era: The New Nation, 1783-1815

Subjects: FinanceEconomicsGovernment and Civics

Sub Era: The Early Republic

Order a Copy Citation Guidelines for Online Resources