Chapter 19

Roger G. Kennedy

in Burr, Hamilton, and Jefferson

Published in print September 2000 | ISBN: 9780195140552
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199848775 | DOI:
Chapter 19

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After abandoning his schemes for war against Spain, Thomas Jefferson set about reigning in Burr, his former vice president. By the end of November 1806, James Wilkinson and Gideon Granger became the principal instruments in Jefferson's campaign to rid himself of his rival. Acting in concert, Granger and Wilkinson played upon Jefferson's fears and saw to it that his cabinet considered “Burrism” and slave revolt as conjoined in Louisiana. On November 25, 1806, a messenger named Thomas Adam Smith appeared before Jefferson bringing with him letters, many of which were forged. On January 10, 1806, Burr arrived fifteen miles north of Natchez at the dock below the plantation headquarters of Judge Peter Bruin, at Bruinsburg. Bruin may have heard of Captain Moses Hooke's commission, but it is likely that he took comfort from the fact that Hooke, Thomas Smith, the two surgeons, and the others were officers of the US Army. If Wilkinson spared Burr's life, Jefferson would not spare him another trial.

Keywords: Thomas Jefferson; Aaron Burr; James Wilkinson; Gideon Granger; Thomas Adam Smith; Peter Bruin; Bruinsburg; Moses Hooke; Louisiana; Burrism

Chapter.  5080 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas

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