Went to Kentucky, 1790. Member Kentucky Legislature, 1800. Attached to American embassy, Madrid, Spain, 1st as secretary of legation, later charge d’affaires, 1801-1803.
Appointed secretary Territory of Orleans, 1804, investigated activities of Aaron Burr regarding his scheme to seize Western lands. Chief clerk unites states department of State, 1807-1817. United States secretary of state ad interim, 1817.
Named minister plenipotentiary to Portugal, 1819.
Died August 6, 1820