James Madison

Special Message

February 26, 1814

To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States:

It has appeared that at the recovery of the Michigan Territory from the temporary possession of the enemy the inhabitants thereof were left in so destitute and distressed a condition as to require from the public stores certain supplies essential to their subsistence, which have been prolonged under the same necessity which called for them.

The deplorable situation of the savages thrown by the same event on the mercy and humanity of the American commander at Detroit drew from the same source the means of saving them from perishing by famine, and in other places the appeals made by the wants and sufferings that unhappy description of people have been equally imperious.

The necessity imposed by the conduct of the enemy in relation to the savages of admitting their cooperation in some instances with our arms has also involved occasional expense in supplying their wants, and it is possible that a perseverance of the enemy in their cruel policy may render a further expense for the like purpose inevitable.

On these subjects an estimate from the Department of War will be laid before Congress, and I recommend a suitable provision for them.


James Madison, Special Message Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/205476

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