Title: William M. Evarts to Edward Jordan, 27 February 1869
Date: February 27, 1869
Source: Transcribed from digital images or a microfilm reproduction of the original item. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.
Location: National Archives and Records Administration
Whitman Archive ID: nar.00812
Contributors to digital file: Elizabeth Lorang, Nima Najafi Kianfar, Kevin McMullen, and John Schwaninger
Feb. 27, 1869.
Edward Jordan, Esq.
Solicitor of the Treasury.
I have the honor to receive your letter of the 17th of February inst. and the accompanying papers, relating to proceedings on behalf of the United States against the Louisiana State Bank, for the proceeds of certain cotton and asking me to give such directions respecting the proceedings allowed to as I may deem expedient, or to express to you my advice as to the course to be adopted in the premises.
I regard the subject of your letter, and the request for my advice and direction in the premises, as falling within the provision of the 10th Sect. of the Act of May 20, 1830, by which it is made the duty of the Attorney General of the U. S. at the request of the Solicitor of the Treasury, to advise and direct the said Solicitor as to the manner of conducting certain suits, proceedings & prosecutions.
I have accordingly made the proper examination into the nature of the case, and the proceedings under consideration, and particularly have given that weight to the opinions and suggestions of the Hon. John A. Campbell, of New Orleans, found in one of the papers submitted to me which the distinguished ability and character of that gentleman should secure.
I have, upon this examination concluded, and so advise, that the confiscation proposed cannot be maintained, and should not, therefore, be attempted. If I had come to an opposite conclusion as to the legal nature of the claim, on the part of the U. S. and the result of its prosecution, I should still be of opinion that it was neither the interest nor the duty of the Government, in the present state of affairs, to insist upon the forfeiture of the property in question.
I return the papers transmitted to me, & advise that your action in the premises should be governed by the views which I have expressed.
I have the honor to be, &c. &c.
Wm. M. Evarts,
proceeds of certain cotton - U. S. ag't Louisiana State Bank