MEASURES IN WASHINGTON
to buffet a combination of bar and bench." In conclusion the General hastened to felicitate the President on his narrow escape from a terrible calamity and upon the discovery in the West of a degree of loyalty beyond imagination. " I congratulate you, sir, with my whole soul on the issue which the nefarious project has taken. . . . I consider the general safety secured, and I view with exultation the triumph of principle in the patriotic display made by the states of the Ohio." For Wilkinson to prate of the "patriotic display made by the states of the Ohio," a region he had represented as ripe for revolt, was downright knavery recoiling on itself. Moreover, when he confessed that the native population of Louisiana, the Creoles, were the most loyal of Americans, his hypocrisy was laid bare in all its hideousness he admitted that the West from the Ohio to the Gulf of Mexico was stanchly patriotic, and that he had made his accusations for selfish purposes. Even at such a moment his courage, always great, was undiminished. Four days after the above dispatch he sent another equally steeped in deception. "The flight of Burr," he said in an official dispatch to the Chief Executive, "the boldness of his numerous associates in the Mississippi Territory, and the very strong interests he has established in the Territory again involve us here in doubts and fears as to the speedy termination of this illicit enterprise. For if (as is believed by many) he is now concealed near Natchez, and should he on the breaking up of the ice receive four or five hundred auxil1
_ ' W i l k i n s o n t o Jefferson, F e b r u a r y 17, 1807; L e t t e r s in lation.