A letter from Meriwether Lewis to President James Madison about Lewis’s journey to deliver papers to Washington, 1809.
Chickasaw Bluffs, [TN]
September 16th 09
I arrived here ^yesterday about [crossed out] PM very much exhausted from the heat of the climate, but having ^taken medicine feel much better this morning. My apprehension from the heat of the lower country and my fear of the original papers relative to my voyage to the Pacific ocean falling into the hands of the British has induced me to change my route and proceed by land through the state of Tennessee to the city of Washington. I bring with me duplicates of my voucher for public expenditures etc. which
when fully explained, or reather [rather] the general view of the circumstances under which they were made I flatter myself that they ^will receive both ^sanction &^ approbation.
Provided my health permits no time shall be lost in reaching Washington, my anxiety to pursue and to fullfill [fulfill] the duties incident to ^the internal arrangements incident to the government of Louisiana has prevented my writing you more frequently. Inclosed I herewith transmit you a copy of the laws of the territory of Louisiana. I have the honor to be with the most sincere esteem your [illegible] and very humble
[ftr?] and very humble Servant.
James Madison Esq.
President U States