To Robert Southgate

    New York City        1 July 1789

    My dear Sir—

    Yours. of —— has come safe to hand; and the one to Mr. [Rufus] King delivered—

    I wish it was in my power to gratify your wish in having Scarborough a port of entry—But I cannot effect it—It has been an object with the House of Representatives to diminish rather than increase the ports of entry, compared with the numbers in the several State Regulations—Presuming it would be more convenient for masters of Vessels, coming into Scarborough, to enter at Saco than at Portland I have got that port within the District of Biddeford & Pepperrellborough—And I hope the change will be agreeable—but if it is not I shall be sorry—

    That some Gentlemen have made their observations upon my corresponding with the persons you mention has not been unknown to me1—but, my friend, none of those Gentlemen, some of whom have been very uncandid in their observations, ever asked, or even hinted to me that it would be agreeable to them to recieve Letters from my while at New-York—While I have made it a rule, from which, if my memory serves me, I have not deviated, to correspond freely with every person who desired it, or asked me to write to them—ought I to do more? <lined out>

    Tho I <lined out> good will of the antifederalists, As to gaining the favour of Feds, or Antifeds it never, as I believe you know, has been an object with me any further than it has gained by been the effect of an independence & rectitude of Conduct—And so far as this has a tendency to conciliate and engage the good will of either party, I trust these Gentlemen themselves, will say is no way blameable—And I believe that all who know me will acquit me of being what is commonly called a people-pleaser—Indeed my sentiments upon almost every subject is different from people in general—And it is well known I have in no instance made use of disguise—but in all cases spoke as I thought—whether my notions & Ideas were agreeable, or disagreeable to others—

    The Impost Bill has passed both houses, and gone to the President—it is to take effect on the first day of August2

    A Tonage Bill has passed & repassed from the house to the Senate several times, & the house is now discussing some amendments proposed by the Senate—The question is called for—on which the yeas, & Nays are taken—in a few moments I shall be able to tell you the fate of the Bill—

    The question is carried in favor of agreeing to the amendments proposed by the Senate—so the Act passes & goes to the President for his approbation—This Act also is to take effect on t[he] first of August3—As soon as they are published I will forward you a copy of each—

    We shall on the morrow proceed to consider the Bill for collecting the Impost—This will pa[ss I] think, without much difficulty—

    Mr. King just now sent me the inclosed p[aper?] & desired me to convey it to you—He & fam[ily] are well—He goes this week to Albany to the General Assembly of this State of which [he] is a member—

    Kiss your wife & tell her I am yours & her friend at all times & all places—

    * * *

    ALS, Coll. 74 1/2, William Southgate Papers, MeHi. Addressed to Scarborough.