Jefferson, Thomas, 1743-1826.

Alternative names
Dates:
birth 1743‑04‑02
death 1826‑07‑04
Gender:
VIAF, howard, uct, aps, colu, inu, uchic, nwda, vah, taro, LC, rutu, pu, ncsu, nyu, NLA, unc, WorldCat, nara, crnlu, uut, yale, cjh, nypl, oac, lc, umi, LAC, harvard, pacscl
United States
English, Italian Unknown , Dutch Unknown , Spanish Unknown , French Unknown , Greek, Modern (1453- ) Unknown , Latin Unknown

Biographical notes:

Virginia statesman, resident of Albemarle County, Virginia.

From the description of Lists of packages and invoice of goods sent from the palace, [1780]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122539114

José Francisco Correia da Serra was a Portuguese scholar, naturalist and diplomat.

From the guide to the José Francisco Correia da Serra letters, 1810-1823, 1810-1823, (American Philosophical Society)

Thomas Jefferson, philosopher, author of the Declaration of Independence, and president of the United States.

From the description of Thomas Jefferson manuscript material : 2 items, 1801-1816 (New York Public Library). WorldCat record id: 439037760

At this time, Thomas Jefferson was President of the United States. John Shee was a general in Philadelphia.

From the description of Letter to John Shee, 1808 January 29. (University of Pennsylvania Library). WorldCat record id: 155866458

Jefferson was United States minister to France from 1785 to 1789.

From the description of ALS : Paris, to John Paul Jones, 1785 Nov. 5. (Rosenbach Museum & Library). WorldCat record id: 86165748

From the description of AL (3rd person) : Paris, to John Paul Jones, 1787 Dec. 26. (Rosenbach Museum & Library). WorldCat record id: 122417400

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) was the third president of the United States, born in Goochland (now Albemarle County), Virginia. He was a member of the Virginia House of Burgesses from 1769 to 1775, and with R. H. Lee and Patrick Henry initiated the inter-colonial committee of correspondence in 1773. He wrote the widely circulated Summary View of the Rights of British America in 1774. Jefferson was a member of the Continental Congress in 1775 and 1776, and was chairman of committee that prepared Declaration of Independence. Jefferson himself wrote and presented the first draft of Declaration to Congress on July 2, 1776. He then signed Declaration with other founding fathers. Jefferson was Governor of Virginia from 1779 to 1781, and again a member of the Continental Congress from 1783 to 1785. He proposed decimal coinage, a series of provisions later embodied in Ordinance of 1787. He served as U.S. minister to France from 1785 to 1789, and as U.S. Secretary of State from 1790 to 1793. He served as Vice president of the U.S. from 1797 to 1801, and drafted the Kentucky Resolves in 1798, against the Alien and Sedition Acts. Jefferson was President of the United States from 1801 to 1809, elected by the House of Representatives after a tie in electoral vote (with Aaron Burr, q.v.). His presidential administration is remembered for the purchase of Louisiana from France in 1803 and dispatch of Lewis and Clark to explore it; the war against Algerian pirates from 1801 to 1805; diplomatic trouble with Great Britain over "impressments" of American seamen (Embargo Act of 1807); and prohibition of the importation of slaves. After retirement from presidency, Jefferson lived on his plantation at Monticello near Charlottesville, Virginia. He was instrumental in founding the University of Virginia in 1819. He was a noted naturalist, scholar, and architect, and author of Notes on the State of Virginia in 1785.

From the description of Jefferson, Thomas, 1743-1826 (U.S. National Archives and Records Administration). naId: 10581911

William Russell taught in Georgia, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts; edited Russell's Journal of Education; and founded the Merrimack Normal Institute, New Hampshire.

From the description of Letter to William Russell, 1824 May 1. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 49046862

Jefferson was born Apr. 13, 1743 at Shadwell, VA; attended William & Mary, 1760-62; admitted to the bar (1767) and practiced law until 1774; married Martha Wayles Skelton, 1772; elected, House of Burgesses, 1769-74; served as magistrate and County lieutenant, Albemarle County, VA; member, Continental Congress, 1775-76; drafted the Declaration of Independence; served in the Virginia Legislature (1776-79) until elected Governor of VA; member, Continental Congress, 1783-84; US Minister to France, 1784-89; US Secretary of State, 1790-93; elected US Vice President in 1796 and US President in 1800; re-elected to a second term as President and was succeeded in 1809 by Madison; died at Monticello, VA, on July 4, 1826.

From the description of Nail book. 1796-1826. (University of California, Los Angeles). WorldCat record id: 40297749

Foreign minister to France and third President of the United States.

From the description of Cipher codes, 1781-1802. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 34931255

Third president U.S.

From the description of Letter : Monticello, to William A.G. Dade, Dumfries, Va, 1825 May 31. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 34336577

Thomas Jefferson was the third President of the United States (1801-1809). He also served as a member of the Virginia House of Burgesses (1774-1776); delegate to the Continential Congress (1776); member of the Virginia House of Delegates (1776-1779); Governor of Virginia (1779-1781); Minister to France (1784-1789), Secretary of State (1789-1793); and Vice-president (1797-1801).

From the description of Jefferson, Thomas, letters, 1779, 1792. (University of Texas Libraries). WorldCat record id: 82230908

Rembrandt Peale (1778-1860) studied art under his father Charles Willson Peale and Benjamin West. His father commissioned him to paint a portrait of Thomas Jefferson. After his Baltimore museum and gallery failed, he successfully established himself in New York and Philadelphia.

From the description of Letter: Monticello to Rembrandt Peale, 1813 August 11. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122498010

Thomas Jefferson was President of the United States from 1801 to 1809.

From the description of Letter : Monticello, to Judge William Johnson, Charleston, S.C., 1823 June 12. (The South Carolina Historical Society). WorldCat record id: 32144750

Virginia governor (1779-1781), Vice President (1797-1801), President (1801-1809).

From the description of Virginia Constitution of1776, third draft. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 86172358

Born in Ireland, Mathew Carey spent most of his professional career in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where he worked as a printer, publisher, and economist.

From the guide to the Mathew Carey letterbooks, 1788-1794, 1788-1794, (American Philosophical Society)

Governor of Virginia, 1805-1808, and judge of the Virginia Court of Appeals.

From the description of Letter to William H. Cabell, 1807 August 11. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 49046612

Declaration of Independence signer from Virginia.

From the description of Letter to Peter S. Du Ponceau, 1820 December 28. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 55230424

William Short acted as Thomas Jefferson's private secretary in Paris and served as secretary of legation and charge d'affaires. He was minister to the Hague and participated in negotiations of Pinckney Treaty with Spain.

From the description of Papers, 1761-1931, 1785-1826. (College of William & Mary). WorldCat record id: 22577925

Jefferson was serving as governor of Virginia when this letter was written. William Preston was a military officer.

From the description of Letter, 1780 June 22. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122611908

Third president United States.

From the description of Ship's papers signed by Thomas Jefferson together with a clipped signature, engraving, and facsimile of the Life and morals of Jesus of Nazareth, 1805 March 9, 1904, n.d. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 34336580

U.S. president, vice president, and secretary of state; diplomat, architect, inventor, planter, and philosopher.

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1743-1787. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981704

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1766-1826. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981710

From the description of Calendar of Thomas Jefferson, 1895. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981711

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1779-1826. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981700

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1772-1841. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981696

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1796-1811. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981705

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1777-1945. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981709

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1775-1827. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981671

From the description of Cocke collection of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1810-1826. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981701

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1606-1943 (bulk 1775-1826). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70979887

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1787-1825. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981721

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1785-1826. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981712

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1803-1823. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981706

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1850-1854. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981702

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1775-1825. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981699

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1785-1820. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981707

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1787-1825. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981726

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1769-1807. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981703

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1764-1826. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981708

From the description of Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1785-1831. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 79700990

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1771-1821. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981722

From the description of Control file index for the papers of Thomas Jefferson. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 71068566

Virginia statesman, governor, and U.S. president; resident of Albemarle County, Virginia.

From the description of Manner of arranging my books at Monticello when I return. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122488059

Thomas Jefferson was president of the United States, 1801-1809, and of the American Philosophical Society, 1797-1815. John Sibley was an Indian agent for Orleans Territory, 1805-1814, and gathered vocabularies of tribes within the territory and reported his findings to Jefferson.

From the description of Comparative vocabularies of several Indian languages, 1802-1808. (American Philosophical Society Library). WorldCat record id: 122523363

President of the United States: resident of Monticello, Albemarle County, Virginia.

From the description of Letter : Monticello, to Craven Peyton, 1820 March 8. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 86172361

Having completed his studies at the College of William and Mary in 1762, Thomas Jefferson began his studies of law under the tutelage of George Wythe. He passed his bar examintaion late in 1765.

From the description of The Equity Commonplace Book of Thomas Jefferson ca. 1765. (Huntington Library, Art Collections & Botanical Gardens). WorldCat record id: 727074221

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), president of the United States, 1801-1809; governor of Virginia, 1779-1781; U.S. minister to France, 1785-1789; U.S. secretary of state, 1790-1793; vice-president of the United States, 1797-1801; after retirement from presidency, lived at plantation Monticello near Charlottesville, Albemarle County, Va.; instrumental in founding University of Virginia, 1819.

From the guide to the Thomas Jefferson Letters (copies) Inventory (#861), 1784-1824., (Southern Historical Collection)

American politician and plantation owner. He served as the third President of the United States.

From the description of Letter, 1807. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122605070

Thomas Jefferson served as president of the United States, 1801-1809, and of the American Philosophical Society, 1797-1815. John Sibley was an Indian agent for Orleans Territory, 1805-1814, and gathered vocabularies of tribes within the territory and reported his findings to Jefferson.

From the guide to the Comparative vocabularies of several Indian languages, 1802-1808, 1802-1808, (American Philosophical Society)

Third president of the United States.

From the description of To all to whom these presents shall come, greeting, 1801. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 367396084

From the description of Letter [manuscript] : Monticello, to Colonel Charles Simms 1811 November 4. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647827972

From the description of Letter and engraving of Thomas Jefferson [manuscript], 1811 and 1862. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647820356

From the description of Letters to Dr. Samuel Brown [manuscript], 1814 April 28 and 1820 November 3. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647818570

From the description of Letter to Philip Mazzei, 1805 May 4. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 32958602

From the description of Letters of Thomas Jefferson and John Marshall, 1803 and ca. 1830. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 32959100

From the description of Letter to David Gelston, 1816 August 3. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 32958610

From the description of Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1780-1809. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 32959223

From the description of Report fragment, ca. 1769. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 32958619

From the description of Letter to James Breckinridge, 1824 December 22. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 32958988

From the description of Letter to "the President of Pennsylvania", 1790 May 28. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 32959542

From the description of Letter to Mr. Hugh Holmes [manuscript], 1803 December 22. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647818258

From the description of Letter to David Gelston [manuscript], 1816 August 3. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647806535

From the description of Report fragment [manuscript], ca. 1769. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647806537

From the description of Letter to George Meade [manuscript], 1800 March 13. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647818362

From the description of Letter to Philip Mazzei [manuscript], 1805 May 4. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647806531

From the description of Letter to Michel Guillaume St. John de Crevecoeur [manuscript], 1787 January 15. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647817603

From the description of Letter to James Breckinridge [manuscript], 1824 December 22. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647806914

From the description of Letter to David Gelston [manuscript], 1810 December 7. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647817197

From the description of Letter to "the President of Pennsylvania" [manuscript], 1790 May 28. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647808111

From the description of Letter to Joseph Anthony [manuscript], 1801 January 12. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647818353

From the description of Letter to Col. Thomas Turpin [manuscript], 1771 June 3. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647808298

From the description of Abstracts of actions of the General Court of Virginia (1623-1624) [manuscript], ca. 1785. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647817585

From the description of Letter to John Griscom [manuscript], 1825 January 16. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647877728

From the description of Deposition of Thomas Jefferson, 1821 March 9. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 34336576

From the description of Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1770-1822. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 34567048

From the description of Letter and payroll, 1777-1825. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 34931244

From the description of Papers of Thomas Jefferson [manuscript], 1810, 1875, and n.d. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647816312

From the description of Letter to Mrs. Anthony Merry [manuscript], 1803 December 26. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647818315

From the description of Letter to David Gelston [manuscript], 1816 September 19. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647821443

3rd president of the U.S.

From the description of Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1818 and n.d. [manuscript]. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647826941

President of the United States, 1801-09.

From the description of [LS] 1821 Mar. 5, Monticello, [Va. to] John Graves, Louisa [Louisa County Court House, Va.] / T. Jefferson. (Washington & Lee University). WorldCat record id: 23588254

This letter was written when Jefferson was serving as governor of Virginia; the addressee is unknown.

From the description of Letter : Richmond, 1780 December 18. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122352161

Thomas Jefferson was trained in the art of surveying by his father, Peter Jefferson. Unlike George Washington, he was never a salaried surveyor, and worked only on his own lands acquired by inheritance or puchase.

From the description of Thomas Jefferson's surveys, 1771-1812. (Huntington Library, Art Collections & Botanical Gardens). WorldCat record id: 700320644

Jefferson was author of the Declaration of Independence, author of the statute of Virginia for religious freedom, and father of the University of Virginia.

From the description of Drawings and account books, 1751-1826. (Winterthur Library). WorldCat record id: 122503642

Jefferson was the principal founder of the University of Virginia.

From the description of ALS, 1825 June 30 : Monticello, to Rufus King, Minister Plenipotentiary, London. (Copley Press, J S Copley Library). WorldCat record id: 14991978

Statesman, revolutionary, and United States President.

From the description of Thomas Jefferson : miscellaneous papers, 1782-1819. (Filson Historical Society, The). WorldCat record id: 49243678

Third United States President.

From the description of Letter [manuscript]: Richmond, to Theodorick Bland, Prince George County, 1780 July 28. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647855497

From the description of Letter : Richmond, to Theodorick Bland, Prince George County, 1780 July 28. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 32960001

President of the United States, 1801-1809; governor of Virginia, 1779-1781; U.S. minister to France, 1785-1789; U.S. secretary of state, 1790-1793; vice-president of the United States, 1797-1801; after retirement from presidency, lived at plantation Monticello near Charlottesville, Albemarle County, Va.; instrumental in founding University of Virginia, 1819.

From the description of Thomas Jefferson letters (copies), 1784-1824 [manuscript]. (Oceanside Free Library). WorldCat record id: 23475330

Thomas Jefferson, revolutionary, statesman, and third president of the United States, was also a great reader and book collector. While serving as minister to France in the 1780s after the American Revolution, Jefferson acquired thousands of books for his library at Monticello. On March 3, 1794, a year before Jefferson wrote his letter, Jacques-François Froullé was guillotined by the French revolutionary tribunal for having published, in April 1793, a work sympathetic to Louis XVI entitled Liste comparative des cinq appels nominaux ... sur le procès et le jugement de Louis XVI, avec les déclarations que les députés ont faites à chacune des séances.

From the description of Letter : Monticello, to Jacques-François Froullé, 1795 May 26. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122602876

President, Vice President, Signer of the Declaration of Independence, Secretary of State, Minister to France.

From the description of Letter, Monticello, to David Hosack, New York [manuscript] 1824 May 12. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647929538

Andrew Van Bibber enrolled in the first session of the University of Virginia, studied modern languages, natural philosophy and chemistry and later farmed in Mathews County.

From the description of Letter to H. P. Van Bibber [manuscript], 1825 January 5. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647911627

Jefferson: President of the United States; Rodney: congressman from Delaware.

From the description of Letter : [Washington, D.C.], to Mr. [Caesar A.] Rodney, 1804 Feb 13. (Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library). WorldCat record id: 43575346

Thomas Jefferson was president of the United States, 1801-1809, and of the American Philosophical Society, 1797-1815.

From the description of Papers, 1775-1825. (American Philosophical Society Library). WorldCat record id: 122523514

From the guide to the Chronological series of facts relating to Louisiana; its limits and bounds, 1804, 1804, (American Philosophical Society)

President United States.

From the description of Letter to John Milledge [manuscript], 1802 April 30. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647817429

Rutledge was a signer of the Declaration of Independence, governor of South Carolina, U.S. Congressman and presidential elector who voted for Jefferson in the 1796 election.

From the description of Thomas Jefferson letter to Edward Rutledge [manuscript], 1796 December 27. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647911619

From the description of Letter to Edward Rutledge, 1796 December 27. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 49046596

Jefferson was the third U.S. president, serving 1801-1809.

From the description of ALS, 1805 February 8 : Washington, to Mercy Warren. (Copley Press, J S Copley Library). WorldCat record id: 14991938

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) was the third President of the United States.

From the description of Thomas Jefferson papers, 1765-1826. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 86164272

From the guide to the Thomas Jefferson papers, 1765-1826, (The New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division.)

U.S. president.

From the description of Thomas Jefferson letters, 1802-1822. (Arkansas History Commission). WorldCat record id: 644160175

Thomas Jefferson was the third President of the United States.

From the description of Letter to Bowling Clarke [manuscript], 1812 May 4. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647896810

Third President of the United States.

From the description of Letter to unidentified recipient [manuscript] 1800 April 3. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647845639

From the description of Thomas Jefferson letters, 1810-1814 1810 April 13-1814 December 24 (Washington University in St. Louis). WorldCat record id: 181655538

From the description of Manuscripts in the hand of Thomas Jefferson [manuscript], 1812?-1825? (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647847599

From the description of Letters to Philip Mazzei and John Wayles Eppes [manuscript], 1801-1810. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647875445

From the description of Letter : Monticello, to Edward A. Turpin, Francisville, 1826 January 10. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 32136201

Governor of Virginia, minister to France, secretary of state, vice president, and president of the United States.

From the description of Letter, 1803 April 13. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122625182

Jefferson was serving as governor of Virginia at the time of this letter.

From the description of Letter : Richmond, to Colonel Fitzgerald, Alexandria, 1781 December 19. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122555619

Virginia Governor (1779-1781), U.S. President (1801-1809); Albemarle County, Virginia.

From the description of Deposition, 1821 March 9. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122538840

Thomas Jefferson was the third President of the United States and founder of The University of Virginia.

From the description of Letters written by Thomas Jefferson [manuscript], 1785-1822. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647884715

From the description of Letter to James Breckinridge [manuscript], 1823 April 12. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647884709

President of United States, 1801-09.

From the description of [DS] 1806 Mar. 20 certifying that the vessel Melpomene sails under the U.S. flag. (Washington & Lee University). WorldCat record id: 23550298

Thomas Jefferson was serving as governor of Virginia at the time this letter was written to Richard Caswell, governor of North Carolina.

From the description of Letter : Williamsburgh, to his excellency Richard Caswell, Governor of North Carolina, 1779 June 30. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122632538

Thomas Jefferson (April 13, 1743 – July 4, 1826) was the third President of the United States (1801–1809), the principal author of the Declaration of Independence (1776), and one of the most influential Founding Fathers for his promotion of the ideals of republicanism in the United States. Major events during his presidency include the Louisiana Purchase (1803) and the Lewis and Clark Expedition (1804–1806).

From the guide to the Passport, 1807 April 22, (John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Library, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation)

Jefferson was serving as governor of Virginia at the time this letter was written.

From the description of Letter : Williamsburg, to the Board of Trade, [Williamsburg], 1780 March 23. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122497004

United States president.

From the description of Accounts, ca. 1793, from the Monticello blacksmith shop [manuscript]. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647821848

From the description of Letter to Augustus Watson and John Hartwell Cocke, 1817 March 10. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 32959314

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) was the third President of the United States (1801-1809).

From the description of Thomas Jefferson engraving and autograph, undated. (Rhinelander District Library). WorldCat record id: 762830211

Charles Nicoll Bancker was a merchant and financier.

From the guide to the Charles Nicoll Bancker family papers, 1733-1894, 1733-1894, (American Philosophical Society)

Thomas Jefferson was president of the United States, 1801-1809.

From the description of Chronological series of facts relating to Louisiana; its limits and bounds, 1804. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 173465766

Thomas Jefferson (April 13, 1743 – July 4, 1826) was the third President of the United States (1801–1809), the principal author of the Declaration of Independence (1776), and one of the most influential Founding Fathers for his promotion of the ideals of republicanism in the United States.

From the guide to the Letter to the Virginia Board of Trade, 1780 March 23, (John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Library, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation)

Jefferson, third president of the U.S. and principal founder of the University of Virginia, died only a few months after writing this letter.

From the description of ALS, 1826 April 22 : Monticello, to a bookseller. (Copley Press, J S Copley Library). WorldCat record id: 14992002

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) was a statesman, diplomat, author, scientist, architect, and apostle of freedom and enlightenment.

From the description of Papers, 1787-1825. (American Antiquarian Society). WorldCat record id: 191259459

President of the United States.

From the description of ALS : Washington, [D.C.], to John Vaughan, [Philadelphia, Pa.], 1808 June 22. (Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library). WorldCat record id: 43575341

A lawyer in New Orleans, Louisiana, Edward Alexander Parsons (1878-1962) married and had at least one daughter. A bibliophile, he briefly worked for the New Orleans Public Library in the 1930s and over a period of sixty years built a private collection, known as the Bibliotheca Parsoniana, with over 8,000 manuscripts and 40,000 publications on the American South, which was acquired by the University of Texas at Austin in 1958. An avid researcher and amateur historian, Parsons published numerous articles, pamphlets, and books, such as The Noble Art of Printing: An Exposition, with Some Account of Johann Gutenberg, the Father of Printing (1940), The Letters of Robert R. Livingston: The Diplomatic Story of the Louisiana Purchase (1943), The Alexandrian Library, Glory of the Hellenic World: Its Rise, Antiquities, and Destructions (1952), and The Wonder and the Glory: Confessions of a Southern Bibliophile (1962).

Source:

Lentz, Lamar. The Parsons Collection Revisited. The Library Chronicle of the University of Texas at Austin, No. 30, 1985: pp. 70-81.

From the guide to the Parsons, Edward Alexander, collection 93-492; 2009-324; 2012-099., 1678-1928, 1951, (Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin)

Born to Peter Jefferson and Jane Randolph in Shadwell, Virginia, Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) was the third president of the United States as well as the author of the Declaration of Independence. After his father’s death in 1757, Jefferson inherited an extensive estate and graduated from the College of William and Mary. In 1767, he started practicing law, later serving in several government positions, including as county lieutenant and a member of the House of Burgesses. Three years later, Jefferson began building his house at Monticello, Virginia, where he settled with his wife Martha Wayles Skelton, whom he married in 1772. Three years later, he was elected to the Continental Congress and selected to draft the Declaration of Independence in 1776. That same year, Jefferson left Congress and was appointed to the Virginia House of Delegates. After serving as governor of Virginia from 1779 through 1781, he became secretary of state in 1790 and vice president in 1796. Jefferson was elected president of the United States in 1801, a position he held for eight years. During his tenure as president, he purchased the Louisiana Territory and supported the expedition of Lewis and Clark. Jefferson exhibited many specimens collected by Lewis and Clark’s expedition in his friend Charles Willson Peale’s museum of natural science and art in Philadelphia. Following his retirement from public life in 1809, he sold his vast library to the government as the basis for the Library of Congress and helped establish the University of Virginia in 1825. A year later, Jefferson died at Monticello.

Sources:

Brief Biography of Thomas Jefferson. Monticello. Accessed June 27, 2011. http://www.monticello.org/site/jefferson/brief-biography-thomas-jefferson .

Charles Willson Peale. Monticello. Accessed June 27, 2011. http://www.monticello.org/site/research-and-collections/charles-willson-peale .

From the guide to the Jefferson, Thomas, Papers, 1797-1824, (Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin)

Jefferson, 3rd president of the United States, 1801-1809.

Dolley Madison, wife of the 4th president of the United States, 1809-1817.

From the description of [Letter, 18]16 Jun. 5, Monticello [to Col. Simms] / Th: Jefferson. (Smith College). WorldCat record id: 234303923

Born to Peter Jefferson and Jane Randolph in Shadwell, Virginia, Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) was the third president of the United States as well as the author of the Declaration of Independence.

After his father's death in 1757, Jefferson inherited an extensive estate and graduated from the College of William and Mary. In 1767, he started practicing law, later serving in several government positions, including as county lieutenant and a member of the House of Burgesses. Three years later, Jefferson began building his house at Monticello, Virginia, where he settled with his wife Martha Wayles Skelton, whom he married in 1772. Three years later, he was elected to the Continental Congress and selected to draft the Declaration of Independence in 1776. That same year, Jefferson left Congress and was appointed to the Virginia House of Delegates. After serving as governor of Virginia from 1779 through 1781, he became secretary of state in 1790 and vice president in 1796. Jefferson was elected president of the United States in 1801, a position he held for eight years. During his tenure as president, he purchased the Louisiana Territory and supported the expedition of Lewis and Clark. Jefferson exhibited many specimens collected by Lewis and Clark's expedition in his friend Charles Willson Peale's museum of natural science and art in Philadelphia. Following his retirement from public life in 1809, he sold his vast library to the government as the basis for the Library of Congress and helped establish the University of Virginia in 1825. A year later, Jefferson died at Monticello.

From the description of Jefferson, Thomas, Papers, 1797-1824 (University of Texas Libraries). WorldCat record id: 759202067

Commodore James Barron, born 15 September 1768 in Hampton, Virginia, died 21 April 1851 in Norfolk, served under his father, Commodore James Barron the Elder, in the Revolutionary War. He was made Captain in the Virginia Navy in 1799 and transferred to the newly formed U.S. Navy in 1803. During the War with Tripoli he commanded the U.S. Frigates New York and President when his brother, Commodore Samuel Barron, was commander of the Mediterranean Squadron. He assisted his brother in that command when the latter's health failed and returned with him to Norfolk in 1805.

Appointed Commander of the Mediterranean Squadron in 1806 with the rank of Commodore, which title he retained for the rest of his life, he sailed aboard the U.S. Chesapeake. The British ship Leopard attacked the Chesapeake when Barron refused to allow his ship to be boarded in a search for British deserters. After a brief battle, Barron surrendered and on the request of his junior officers he was brought before a Naval court martial. The command was turned over to Capt. Stephen Decatur who in the Algerian War of 1815 became a national hero. Barron was suspended from the Navy for five years in a decision criticized by many, including B. Cocke of Washington and Robert Saunders of Williamsburg.

Barron took command of the merchant ship Portia, and after several voyages was caught in a Danish port by the outbreak of the War of 1812. He attempted to get passage home but was refused it because of the Danish neutrality and remained in Copenhagen until 1819. During this period he supported himself with his inventions including a new type of mill, a rope spinning machine, a cork cutter, and a dough kneading machine. Upon his return he sought a command in the Navy and in the course of this an argument by mail with Decatur resulted in the famous duel in which Barron was seriously injured and Decatur fatally. His second in the duel, Capt. J. D. Elliott was coupled with Barron in responsibility for the duel, though perhaps unfairly.

A Naval Court of Enquiry was held in 1821 to clear the name of Barron for his absence in the War of 1812 and other charges brought against him. The decision was very noncommittal and was criticized by many, including Carter Beverley and John Taliaferro of Williamsburg.

In 1824, Barron was given the command of the Philadelphia Navy Yard, largely through the influence of his friend, General Andrew Jackson. While there he participated in the entertaining of General Lafayette when he visited the U.S.

Commodore Barron took command of the Gosport Navy Yard in 1825 where he remained until 1831 when he returned to the command of the Philadelphia Navy Yard. In 1837, he resigned that command because an officer junior to him had been appointed President of the Naval Board in Washington, and was without command until 1842. From 13 March to 30 November 1842 he commanded the Navy Asylum, a retirement home for Naval men in Philadelphia. In that position he was also in charge of the training and examination of Midshipmen for the Navy, and his advice was asked when plans were being made for organization of the Naval Academy at Annapolis in 1847. In 1845, he returned to Norfolk where he lived in retirement until his death in 1851.

During all this time he continued his interest in inventions which included a new type of pump and bellows ventilator for ships, a steam-powered battleship, a new type of dry dock, and a cylinder steam for ships developed with Amos Kendali. He was instrumental in the development of the Naval flag signal, which he first revised in 1798.

Commodore Barron supported the education of his grandson, James Barron Hope, whose early letters, a poem on Washington, and other poems are included at the end of Box 11. (See the James Barron Hope Papers for a continuation of these papers, and the Samuel Barron Papers for a chart to the genealogy of the Barron family.)

From the guide to the James Barron Papers (1), 1766-1899., (Special Collections, Earl Gregg Swem Library, College of William and Mary)

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826, APS 1780) was a philosopher, governor of Virginia, founder of the University of Virginia, author of the Declaration of Independence, and president of the United States. He served as vice-president of the American Philosophical Society from 1791 to 1794, and president from 1797 to 1814.

Jefferson was born in 1743 at Shadwell, in what became Albermarle County, Virginia. His father was Peter Jefferson, a planter and surveyor, and his mother was Jane Randolph. Upon his father’s death in 1757 Jefferson inherited an estate of 5,000 acres and the slaves to work it. As a boy Jefferson received a classical education in local schools which were both run by two ministers, William Douglas and James Maury. In 1760 he enrolled at the College of William and Mary, where his studies included natural and moral philosophy. Jefferson recalled later that three men played particularly influential roles during this time. They included William Small (1734-1775), the college’s professor of natural philosophy from whom Jefferson said, "I got my first views of the expansion of science & of the system of things in which we are placed." Another mentor was the lawyer George Wythe (1726?-1806), with whom Jefferson formed a life-long, close friendship. The third major influence on young Jefferson was the royal governor Francis Fauquier (1703?-1768). Fauquier regularly opened his official residence to gatherings of his circle of friends that included Small, Whyte and Jefferson. After two years of study at the college, Jefferson spent the next five years reading law under Whyte, whom he called his “earliest and best friend.”

After his admittance to the bar in 1767, Jefferson entered upon a successful legal practice. In 1772 he married Martha Wayles Skelton; the couple eventually had six children, two of whom reached adulthood. The next year he doubled his property with the death of his father-in-law to include over 10,000 acres and about 180 slaves. He had also embarked on a project that would occupy him for the rest of his life, the construction of Monticello, a modified Palladian villa he was building on top a densely wooded mountain near Charlottesville, Virginia. This and his other architectural works, including the Virginia Capital, his home “Poplar Forest,” and the University of Virginia, were built in the tradition of the Renaissance Italian Andrea Palladio. Jefferson acquired his understanding of architecture the way he acquired most of his knowledge, through books.

In the meantime, Jefferson had launched a political career that would make him one of the most prominent of the so-called Founding Fathers. It began with his election in 1768 to the House of Burgesses, where he soon became an outspoken critic of imperial policies in the colonies. In 1774 he wrote A Summary View of the Rights of British America in which he used legal arguments and the language of “natural rights” in his denial of the right of Parliament to legislate over the colonies. In 1775 he was elected to the Second Continental Congress at Philadelphia. In the early summer of 1776, he was appointed to lead a five-man committee to draft a declaration of independence. Even though two of the committee members, Benjamin Franklin and John Adams, were more experienced and better known, the task of drafting the document fell to him for political reasons and because he possessed a "peculiar felicity of expression.” Congress debated Jefferson’s declaration for two and a half days in the beginning of July 1776 before approving a revised version.

In the fall of 1776 Jefferson returned to Virginia as a member of the newly constituted House of Delegates. Here he focused on revising the state constitution that had been adopted during his absence. Jefferson was particularly proud of the Statute of Religious Freedom that he drafted in 1777 and that was, after much delay, enacted in 1786. Based on the belief that religion was a matter of private conscience, the law offered neither protection nor support for religion by the state. Another one of his major reforms, however, ended in failure. His Bill for the More General Diffusion of Knowledge (1778) was defeated in 1785. The plan called for a comprehensive system of public education designed to help create a citizenry that would be prepared to bear the rights and responsibilities that came with membership in a republic.

Another issue that Jefferson was deeply concerned with was slavery. He was a slaveholder all his adult life and, unlike some of his fellow Virginia planters who, like George Washington, publicly acted on their antislavery views by freeing their slaves, he freed only a handful during his life and in his will. Jefferson’s views on slavery are complicated by his long-term relationship with his slave and deceased wife’s half-sister Sally Hemings, with whom he fathered as many as six children. There is no doubt that Jefferson hated slavery; however, he hated it primarily for its effects on what it did to (white) republican society. While he often stated that slaves should be freed, he also argued that any plans for emancipation had to be followed by the removal of free African Americans from the United States. Ultimately, his economic dependence on the labor of slaves, fear of racial violence, and profound racism help explain why he never publicly advocated abolition. Slavery, he famously wrote, was like “holding the wolf by the ears, and we can neither hold him, nor safely let go.”

In 1779 Jefferson was elected governor of Virginia, a difficult post given its weak powers during particularly trying times. In 1781 the British invaded the state, forcing the government to abandon Richmond for Charlottesville. Early the next year, Jefferson, whose term had expired but whose successor had not yet been elected, was forced to flee from Monticello from the approaching British. The House of Delegates subsequently heaped more humiliation on Jefferson when it voted to inquire into his conduct. In the end, the legislature did not censure him and passed a customary resolution of thanks for his services.

Nevertheless, Jefferson was deeply stung by the criticism, and he decided to quit politics for good. He retired to Monticello where he focused on “domestic and literary objects.” During this period Jefferson wrote his only book, Notes on the State of Virginia, which was published in 1785. The book, which grew out of a series of questions posed by the French legation to the United States, makes evident Jefferson’s manifold interests in the natural sciences. His discussions included detailed descriptions of the American continent that were primarily designed to counter European claims of American biological inferiority and decay. Jefferson was especially eager to refute the theory of American degeneracy that had been proposed by the French naturalist Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon (1707-1788, APS 1768). In his widely popular Histoire Naturelle, Buffon argued that the American climate produced an “animated Nature [that] is weaker, less active, and more circumscribed in the variety of her productions” than its European counterpart. In his book Jefferson included detailed discussions of American animals, complete with tables listing their average weights, in order to disprove the Comte’s claims. He also included a discussion of Native Americans, who he believed had the same potential as Europeans.

In 1782 the death of his wife Martha plunged Jefferson into a state of depression. "A single event wiped away all my plans,” he wrote in a letter to the Marquis de Chastellux, “and left me a blank which I had not the spirits to fill up." It ended only with his return to Congress in November 1783 and appointment to a commission to negotiate treaties of commerce with European states. Jefferson resided in France from 1784 to 1789, a five-year period he considered among the happiest of his life. His official duties did not hinder him from immersing himself in Parisian culture, including its art, music and theater. He traveled to Italy, France, the Netherlands, England, and the Rhineland not just on official business but also to acquire knowledge that might prove beneficial to his own nation, including ingenious inventions like phosphorous matches and a mold to make spaghetti. Despite the restraints of his official position, Jefferson was a great supporter of the French Revolution which he saw as an extension of the American. "Here," he declared, "is but the first chapter in the history of European liberty."

In 1789 Jefferson went home to the United States for what he anticipated to be a temporary stay. However, instead of returning to Paris, he accepted the appointment by President Washington as the nation’s first Secretary of State. His main tasks were the settlement of Anglo-American issues left over from the Treaty of Paris and the further expansion of American commerce, which he associated with a strengthened French alliance. He was also concerned with pacification of the Native Americans, and with the manipulation of American neutrality in European wars to advance American national interests. His efforts to achieve commercial liberation, strengthen the alliance with France, and support revolution abroad were met with opposition by the Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton (1757-1804, APS 1780), whose system relied on trade and friendship with Britain. Hamilton’s financial plan, which included a national bank, funding of the debt, and subsidies for American manufactures, contributed to the emergence of a political opposition led by Jefferson and Madison. As the division between the so-called Federalists and Republicans deepened, Jefferson was attacked as an enemy of the administration. Jefferson, in turn, labeled Hamilton and his supporters as “Anglican” and “monarchical.” The divisions between the two parties threatened American peace when war between England and France broke out in 1793. However, Washington issued a declaration of neutrality and Jefferson acquiesced, especially after the French minister Edmond Genet defied the American president’s declaration by openly seeking American support for France.

Jefferson left office and returned to Monticello at the end of 1793. He focused on agricultural improvements and simple manufactures, such as a nailery, and also on improvements of Monticello. In 1796 he was once again called out of retirement when his party nominated him as their presidential candidate against John Adams. Jefferson lost to Adams, placing him in the awkward position of Vice President and political opponent to the president. The late 1790s marked a critical period in American history that not only brought the nation to the brink of war but also resulted in intensely partisan struggles that deepened the divisions in the American Congress and people. In 1798 Congress passed the Alien and Sedition Acts that were designed to silence and punish political opponents; Jefferson responded by secretly writing the Kentucky Resolutions, which pronounced these laws to be unconstitutional.

In 1800 Jefferson defeated Adams and Aaron Burr in the presidential election. Anxious to leave the partisan divisions behind and restore harmony he pronounced in his inaugural address "We are all republicans--we are all federalists." For Jefferson, his election marked a return to the ideals of the Revolution that had been abandoned during the previous decade. He called his election “the revolution of 1800;” it was a revolution in the principles of government as that of 1776 had been in form.

The major accomplishment during Jefferson’s first term was the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, doubling the size of the United States. Even before the purchase Jefferson had been planning a voyage of discovery across the continent to the Pacific. At the time, Jefferson was six years into what would be a seventeen year term as president of the American Philosophical Society, and he took full advantage of the expertise of its members to help in the preparations of the expedition. Jefferson had been elected to the APS in 1780, and he had long been a supporter of scientific inquiry and exploration. From 1781 to 1786 he served as a councilor of the Society, and even though his official duties prevented him from taking an active part in the organization’s affairs, he convinced the Society in 1783 that David Rittenhouse (1732-1796, APS 1768) should make an orrery to be presented to the King of France. Jefferson regarded himself as a champion and representative of American science, and he wanted to bring with him to Europe a very tangible piece of evidence for the scientific genius of America.

In 1791 Jefferson was elected vice president of the Society, a position he held until 1794. During this period he once again took advantage of his connection to the Society to promote an enterprise that he considered to be of great public service but that the government would not sponsor. In 1793 he enlisted the members to support the French botanist André Michaux (1749–1802) in his quest to "find the shortest & most convenient route of communication between the U.S. & the Pacific Ocean." Jefferson was forced to withdraw support before the expedition got underway when he learned that Michaux intended to aid the French Minister Genet in his efforts to arouse support for France. Still, Jefferson shared with the Society a commitment to the promotion of science, and in 1797, he was elected president of the Society. That the membership held Jefferson in high esteem is reflected in their rejection of his two offers of resignation, the first after the relocation of the seat of government to Washington, and the second in 1808, shortly before his retirement to Monticello.

In 1803 Jefferson did not hesitate to turn once again to its members in his quest to launch a scientific expedition. He chose his personal secretary Meriwether Lewis (1774-1809, APS 1803) as the leader of what he called the “exploring party,” and sent him to Philadelphia to consult with five members of the APS to acquire the necessary skills for making scientific observations. After spending several weeks at the Lancaster home of Andrew Ellicott (1754-1820, APS 1785), Lewis received instruction from Robert Patterson (1743-1824, APS 1783), Wistar, Benjamin Rush (1745-1813, APS 1768), and Benjamin Smith Barton (1766-1815, APS 1789). In the meantime, the Society’s secretary John Vaughan worked to obtain the necessary instruments to make scientific recordings. "The object of your mission,” Jefferson wrote in his detailed instructions to Lewis, “is to explore the Missouri river, & such principal stream of it, as, by it's course & communication with the water of the Pacific ocean may offer the most direct & practicable water communication across this continent, for the purposes of commerce.” He asked him to record observations "with great pains & accuracy to be entered distinctly, & intelligibly for others as well as yourself.” Lewis selected William Clark to be co-captain of the so-called Corps of Discovery, and in July 1803 he set out from Washington, D.C. to meet Clark in what was then the Indiana Territory. For the next three years, the Corps gathered extensive information about the geography, natural resources, and inhabitants on their journey from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean. The APS was rewarded for its support of the successful expedition when it became a major repository for many of the collected specimens and the original journals. Indeed, over the years Jefferson gave many objects to the Society; in 1819 the members thanked him for the “many important MSS. Documents, calculated to throw light on the history of our country, on the customs, manners, and languages of the Indian nations, and various other interesting national subjects.” The Society was especially grateful for his donation of “several as yet unedited MSS. volumes of scientific notes and observations by Messrs. Lewis and Clark.” Jefferson resigned as president of the Society in 1817; the next year the members honored him with election as one of the councilors, an office he retained until his death in 1826.

Jefferson was easily reelected as president of the United States in 1804; however, his second term turned out to be less triumphant. The outbreak of renewed warfare in Europe once again threatened American peace. As a neutral nation, the United States insisted on free trade with the belligerent nations, including Britain and France. However, each of these two powers demanded that the United States cease trade with its enemy. Britain in particular violated American neutrality by impressing American seamen, sending British ships into American waters, and seizing American vessels. Jefferson ultimately decided to attain concessions through economic sanctions. The embargo of American commerce and navigations was enacted by Congress in December 1807. This experiment in “peaceable coercion,” which lasted for almost a year, failed to reach its objectives. In fact, rather then leading to improvements in foreign relations, the economic effects of the trade restrictions as well as the efforts by the administration to enforce them produced primarily domestic discontentment. The embargo was repealed toward the end of his administration; three years later the United States went to war with Britain.

In 1809 Jefferson, who did not seek reelection for a third term, retired to Monticello. There he was surrounded by his daughter Martha Jefferson Randolph, known as Patsy, her husband Thomas Mann Randolph (1768-1828, APS 1794), and their children. In 1810 he described a typical day to a friend, "From breakfast to dinner [midafternoon], I am in my shops, my garden, or on horseback among my farms; from dinner to dark, I give to society and recreation with neighbors and friends; and from candle light to early bed-time, I read." In 1815 his library numbered around 6,000 volumes. He carried on an extensive correspondence with many individuals, writing about a wide variety of subjects, from political topics to scientific questions, from Indian languages to agriculture. He also drafted a memoir of his life to 1790, wrote a number of essays, and translated two works from the French. He completed what became known as the Jefferson Bible in which he tried to identify the real Jesus amid the corruptions introduced by theologians and ministers. Jefferson was a deist who regarded Jesus as a great moral leader rather then a divine figure.

In the mid-1810s Jefferson once again turned to one of his most important causes, public education. Even though a comprehensive plan was again rejected by the Virginia state legislature, Jefferson succeeded in gaining approval for a state university. The University of Virginia was chartered in 1819. Jefferson designed the buildings, including the “academical village,” helped recruit a faculty, drafted the curriculum, and acquired a library. In his epitaph, which he wrote himself, he chose to be remembered as the author of the Declaration of Independence and the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, and as the Father of the University of Virginia.

Jefferson’s final years were beset by financial problems that ultimately resulted in his bankruptcy. He was also troubled by the course of national politics, warning that the Missouri Compromise was a “fire bell in the night.” He died at Monticello at the fiftieth anniversary of independence, on July 4, 1826.

From the guide to the Thomas Jefferson papers, 1775-1825, 1775-1825, (American Philosophical Society)

José Francisco Correia da Serra (1750–1823, APS 1812) was an abbot, diplomat, scholar and botanist. In his work as a botanist he was particularly concerned with the systematic classification of vegetable species. Thomas Jefferson described him as “profoundly learned in several branches of science he was so above all others in that of Botany; in which he preferred an amalgamation of the methods of Linnaeus [1707-1778, APS 1769] and of Jussieu [1686-1758] to either of them exclusively.” Correia spent many years of his life in France, England and the United States where he made the acquaintance of leading European and American intellectual leaders of the time.

Correia was born in Serpa, Portugal, to the physician and lawyer Luis Dias Correia and Francisca Luisa da Serra. In 1756 the family was forced to leave Portugal because the elder Correia’s scientific work had incurred the displeasure of the Holy Office. They settled in Naples, Italy, where the boy came under the tutelage of the abbé and university professor of “Commerce and mechanics” Antonio Genovesi (1712-1769), a major force in the Neapolitan Enlightenment. During this time Correia was also taught in natural history by the botanist Luis Antonio Verney (1713-1792). In 1772 Correia moved to Rome where he studied at the University and other institutions. By that time he was already corresponding with Carl Linnaeus, in Latin. He also made the acquaintance of Don John Carlos of Braganza, second Duke of Lafoens, a member of the Portuguese royal family. The Duke became Correia’s friend and patron.

In 1775 Correia was ordained a Presbyterian abbot; two years later he received the degree of Doctor of Laws. However, it was clear that Correia’s real interest was natural history, especially botany, and that he did not plan to pursue a life in the church. In fact, some of his biographers have suggested that he focused on ecclesiastical studies mainly in order to protect himself in his scientific work from potential suspicions by the Inquisition. Whatever the case, in early 1778 the young abbé, with encouragement from the duke, who hoped to encourage scientific research in Portugal, moved to Lisbon. There he turned his attention to scholarly pursuits and diplomacy.

Correia and the duke set out right away to organize the Royal Academy of Sciences of Lisbon, a learned institution that was dedicated to the advancement of science. Correia also conducted botanical research. He spent the period from 1786 to about 1788 outside of Portugal, and while his activities during this period remain unclear, there is evidence that he visited Rome. In the mid-1790s, after his return to his native country, he began the task of editing what would be the first three of five volumes of Colleccao de livros ineditos da historia Portugueza, an extensive collection of documents.

In 1795 political difficulties compelled Correia to leave Portugal. The Royal Academy and many of its members were viewed with suspicion by certain ecclesiastical groups, especially after Correia befriended the French naturalist and Girondist Peter Marie Auguste Broussonet (1761-1807), who had taken refuge in Portugal. Armed with letters of introduction to several British scientists, Correia traveled to London. He soon became the protégé of Sir Joseph Banks (1743-1820, APS 1787), president of the Royal Society, who facilitated Correia’s election to the Society. He also was welcomed by James Edward Smith (1759-1828, APS 1796), president of the Linnean Society. By then, Correia was already publishing on various natural science topics, especially botany, which contributed to his growing reputation as a naturalist.

For about one year during his residence in London, Correia also served as Secretary to the Portuguese embassy. However, tensions with the conservative Minister compelled him to depart from England in 1802. In the summer of that year, Correia moved to Paris. There he made the acquaintance of leading scientists and other public figures. The list includes Pierre Samuel Du Pont de Nemours (1739–1817, APS 1800), the Marquis de Lafayette (1757-1834, APS 1781), Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859, APS 1804), the French naturalist Georges Cuvier (1769-1832), Augustin Pyrame de Candolle (1778-1841, APS 1841), and André Thouin (1746-1824), superintendent of the Jardin du Roi, now known as Jardin des Plantes, in Paris. Correia also met Esther Delavigne, who eventually became his lover.

Of particular importance to Correia was his extensive correspondence with friends in Portugal that he maintained throughout his time in London, Paris and then the United States. Through his contact with them he hoped to bring the latest scientific ideas and discoveries to his mother country. His letters are filled with news of new vaccines, maritime maps, instruments, and anything else that he thought might serve to aid the progress of Portugal. Correia’s wide-ranging contacts with fellow botanists made him an important intermediary in the exchanges between naturalists in different parts of the world. In 1807 his own government recognized his contributions by making him a Knight of the Order of Christ.

Overall, Correia’s time in Paris was happy and fruitful. However, life as a liberal under Napoleon was not easy, and Correia soon began to explore the possibility of relocating once again, this time to the United States. Finally, in the winter of 1811, the abbé was aboard the U.S.S. Constitution, on his way to what would become a particularly interesting period in his life.

Correia arrived in Washington, D. C., in early 1812, and he did not lose time in making the acquaintance of leading Americans, including President James Madison. He was anxious to visit Thomas Jefferson but owing to the fact that Philadelphia was the intellectual center of the new nation, he decided to establish himself there first. His European friends had already announced Correia’s imminent arrival to several prominent Philadelphians, including the physicians Benjamin Rush (1745-1813, APS 1768) and Caspar Wistar (1761-1818, APS 1787), and John Vaughan (1756–1841, APS 1784), the treasurer and librarian of the American Philosophical Society. The abbé was elected a member of the Society in January of 1812, before his arrival in the city. He became close friends with Vaughan who soon handled his business affairs and advised him in all kinds of matters. Correia also got to know the botanist Henry Muhlenberg (1753-1815, APS 1785), who introduced him to the physician and botanist Jacob Bigelow (1787-1879, APS 1818). And he reconnected with several Philadelphians he knew from his time in Paris, including the lawyer and financier Nicholas Biddle (1786-1844, APS 1813), and William Short (1759-1849, APS 1804), Jefferson’s private secretary in Paris. Life in Philadelphia was clearly enjoyable for the Portuguese exile but he remained anxious to visit “the great the truly great Mr. Jefferson.” In July of 1813 he left for Virginia for the first of what would eventually be seven visits over a period of about eight years.

Jefferson had been introduced to Correia in glowing letters from Lafayette, Du Pont, Thouin, and Humboldt. It is not surprising, then, that Jefferson received the visitor with warmth and great expectations. They were not disappointed. Jefferson described his guest as “the best digest of science in books, men, and things that I have ever met with; and with these the most amiable and engaging character.” The room in which Correia stayed during his visits to Monticello, the North Square Room, is still known as the Abbé’s room. Correia spent much of his time in Virginia on rambles through the country, often in the company of Thomas Mann Randolph (1768-1828, APS 1794). His interest in natural history eventually also took him to Kentucky, Georgia and north to the Canadian border.

Through Jefferson, Correia made the acquaintance of Francis Walker Gilmer (1790-1826), a promising young man who readily accepted the abbé’s invitation to accompany him on his excursions. In 1816 President Madison asked the two men to deliver a letter from him to the agent of the Cherokee, in the southeastern United States. In the course of their journey through South Carolina and Georgia, they made extensive botanical notations, and Gilmer also recorded several pages of Cherokee vocabulary.

In 1816 Correia received news of his appointment as Portuguese minister-plenipotentiary at Washington, D. C. His expectation that this post would not interfere with his scientific pursuits turned out to be mistaken, even though he never spent more than half a year in the nation’s capital. From the start he was forced to deal with complaints about privateers flying foreign flags who were threatening the Portuguese colonies in South America. The fear was that these privateers, many of whom were American, could encourage and aid a rebellion in Brazil. Correia successfully lobbied the U. S. government for a Neutrality Act that was designed to curb these actions.

In the late 1810s, increasing worries about the turn of Portuguese-American affairs and serious health problems gradually made the abbé’s temper shorter and his spirits lower. He also ultimately became a severe critic of America and Americans, an attitude that contributed to his estrangement from some of his older American friends. However, he also found comfort in new relationships with, for example, the English-born chemist and lawyer Thomas Cooper (1759-1839, APS 1802). Most significantly, Edward Joseph, his fifteen-year old son with his lover Esther Delavigne arrived in the United States from Paris in 1818. Edward, who stayed with his father until their return to Europe, got to know many of his Philadelphia friends quite well. In 1820 father and son sailed from the United States for Portugal via London, a year after Correia had learned of his appointment as Counselor of State for Brazil. Correia spent the last three years of his life in Lisbon, “covered with honors,” as his son Edward wrote in a letter to John Vaughan. He died in Lisbon in 1823.

Correia published many essays and reports on botany in the leading European and American scientific journals of his time. His research centered on the systematic classification of vegetable species. In his work he attempted to apply the methods of compared anatomy of zoology to botany; he sought to group plants into families based on their similarities. His concept of symmetry was later adopted and developed by Candolle. While Correia was not “a member of every philosophical society in the world,” as his young protégé Gilmer wrote enthusiastically in a letter to his brother, he did belong to numerous learned societies. They included the Royal Society, the Linnean Society, the Academy of Science of Paris, and the Société Philomatique. He also offered several courses in botany at the American Philosophical Society.

From the guide to the José Francisco Correia da Serra papers, 1772-1827, 1772-1827, (American Philosophical Society)

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826, APS 1780) was a philosopher, governor of Virginia, founder of the University of Virginia, author of the Declaration of Independence, and president of the United States. He served as vice-president of the American Philosophical Society from 1791 to 1794, and president from 1797 to 1814.

Jefferson was born in 1743 at Shadwell, in what became Albermarle County, Virginia. His father was Peter Jefferson, a planter and surveyor, and his mother was Jane Randolph. Upon his father’s death in 1757 Jefferson inherited an estate of 5,000 acres and the slaves to work it. As a boy Jefferson received a classical education in local schools which were both run by two ministers, William Douglas and James Maury. In 1760 he enrolled at the College of William and Mary, where his studies included natural and moral philosophy. Jefferson recalled later that three men played particularly influential roles during this time. They included William Small (1734-1775), the college’s professor of natural philosophy from whom Jefferson said, "I got my first views of the expansion of science & of the system of things in which we are placed." Another mentor was the lawyer George Wythe (1726?-1806), with whom Jefferson formed a life-long, close friendship. The third major influence on young Jefferson was the royal governor Francis Fauquier (1703?-1768). Fauquier regularly opened his official residence to gatherings of his circle of friends that included Small, Whyte and Jefferson. After two years of study at the college, Jefferson spent the next five years reading law under Whyte, whom he called his “earliest and best friend.”

After his admittance to the bar in 1767, Jefferson entered upon a successful legal practice. In 1772 he married Martha Wayles Skelton; the couple eventually had six children, two of whom reached adulthood. The next year he doubled his property with the death of his father-in-law to include over 10,000 acres and about 180 slaves. He had also embarked on a project that would occupy him for the rest of his life, the construction of Monticello, a modified Palladian villa he was building on top a densely wooded mountain near Charlottesville, Virginia. This and his other architectural works, including the Virginia Capital, his home “Poplar Forest,” and the University of Virginia, were built in the tradition of the Renaissance Italian Andrea Palladio. Jefferson acquired his understanding of architecture the way he acquired most of his knowledge, through books.

In the meantime, Jefferson had launched a political career that would make him one of the most prominent of the so-called Founding Fathers. It began with his election in 1768 to the House of Burgesses, where he soon became an outspoken critic of imperial policies in the colonies. In 1774 he wrote A Summary View of the Rights of British America in which he used legal arguments and the language of “natural rights” in his denial of the right of Parliament to legislate over the colonies. In 1775 he was elected to the Second Continental Congress at Philadelphia. In the early summer of 1776, he was appointed to lead a five-man committee to draft a declaration of independence. Even though two of the committee members, Benjamin Franklin and John Adams, were more experienced and better known, the task of drafting the document fell to him for political reasons and because he possessed a "peculiar felicity of expression.” Congress debated Jefferson’s declaration for two and a half days in the beginning of July 1776 before approving a revised version.

In the fall of 1776 Jefferson returned to Virginia as a member of the newly constituted House of Delegates. Here he focused on revising the state constitution that had been adopted during his absence. Jefferson was particularly proud of the Statute of Religious Freedom that he drafted in 1777 and that was, after much delay, enacted in 1786. Based on the belief that religion was a matter of private conscience, the law offered neither protection nor support for religion by the state. Another one of his major reforms, however, ended in failure. His Bill for the More General Diffusion of Knowledge (1778) was defeated in 1785. The plan called for a comprehensive system of public education designed to help create a citizenry that would be prepared to bear the rights and responsibilities that came with membership in a republic.

Another issue that Jefferson was deeply concerned with was slavery. He was a slaveholder all his adult life and, unlike some of his fellow Virginia planters who, like George Washington, publicly acted on their antislavery views by freeing their slaves, he freed only a handful during his life and in his will. Jefferson’s views on slavery are complicated by his long-term relationship with his slave and deceased wife’s half-sister Sally Hemings, with whom he fathered as many as six children. There is no doubt that Jefferson hated slavery; however, he hated it primarily for its effects on what it did to (white) republican society. While he often stated that slaves should be freed, he also argued that any plans for emancipation had to be followed by the removal of free African Americans from the United States. Ultimately, his economic dependence on the labor of slaves, fear of racial violence, and profound racism help explain why he never publicly advocated abolition. Slavery, he famously wrote, was like “holding the wolf by the ears, and we can neither hold him, nor safely let go.”

In 1779 Jefferson was elected governor of Virginia, a difficult post given its weak powers during particularly trying times. In 1781 the British invaded the state, forcing the government to abandon Richmond for Charlottesville. Early the next year, Jefferson, whose term had expired but whose successor had not yet been elected, was forced to flee from Monticello from the approaching British. The House of Delegates subsequently heaped more humiliation on Jefferson when it voted to inquire into his conduct. In the end, the legislature did not censure him and passed a customary resolution of thanks for his services.

Nevertheless, Jefferson was deeply stung by the criticism, and he decided to quit politics for good. He retired to Monticello where he focused on “domestic and literary objects.” During this period Jefferson wrote his only book, Notes on the State of Virginia, which was published in 1785. The book, which grew out of a series of questions posed by the French legation to the United States, makes evident Jefferson’s manifold interests in the natural sciences. His discussions included detailed descriptions of the American continent that were primarily designed to counter European claims of American biological inferiority and decay. Jefferson was especially eager to refute the theory of American degeneracy that had been proposed by the French naturalist Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon (1707-1788, APS 1768). In his widely popular Histoire Naturelle, Buffon argued that the American climate produced an “animated Nature [that] is weaker, less active, and more circumscribed in the variety of her productions” than its European counterpart. In his book Jefferson included detailed discussions of American animals, complete with tables listing their average weights, in order to disprove the Comte’s claims. He also included a discussion of Native Americans, who he believed had the same potential as Europeans.

In 1782 the death of his wife Martha plunged Jefferson into a state of depression. "A single event wiped away all my plans,” he wrote in a letter to the Marquis de Chastellux, “and left me a blank which I had not the spirits to fill up." It ended only with his return to Congress in November 1783 and appointment to a commission to negotiate treaties of commerce with European states. Jefferson resided in France from 1784 to 1789, a five-year period he considered among the happiest of his life. His official duties did not hinder him from immersing himself in Parisian culture, including its art, music and theater. He traveled to Italy, France, the Netherlands, England, and the Rhineland not just on official business but also to acquire knowledge that might prove beneficial to his own nation, including ingenious inventions like phosphorous matches and a mold to make spaghetti. Despite the restraints of his official position, Jefferson was a great supporter of the French Revolution which he saw as an extension of the American. "Here," he declared, "is but the first chapter in the history of European liberty."

In 1789 Jefferson went home to the United States for what he anticipated to be a temporary stay. However, instead of returning to Paris, he accepted the appointment by President Washington as the nation’s first Secretary of State. His main tasks were the settlement of Anglo-American issues left over from the Treaty of Paris and the further expansion of American commerce, which he associated with a strengthened French alliance. He was also concerned with pacification of the Native Americans, and with the manipulation of American neutrality in European wars to advance American national interests. His efforts to achieve commercial liberation, strengthen the alliance with France, and support revolution abroad were met with opposition by the Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton (1757-1804, APS 1780), whose system relied on trade and friendship with Britain. Hamilton’s financial plan, which included a national bank, funding of the debt, and subsidies for American manufactures, contributed to the emergence of a political opposition led by Jefferson and Madison. As the division between the so-called Federalists and Republicans deepened, Jefferson was attacked as an enemy of the administration. Jefferson, in turn, labeled Hamilton and his supporters as “Anglican” and “monarchical.” The divisions between the two parties threatened American peace when war between England and France broke out in 1793. However, Washington issued a declaration of neutrality and Jefferson acquiesced, especially after the French minister Edmond Genet defied the American president’s declaration by openly seeking American support for France.

Jefferson left office and returned to Monticello at the end of 1793. He focused on agricultural improvements and simple manufactures, such as a nailery, and also on improvements of Monticello. In 1796 he was once again called out of retirement when his party nominated him as their presidential candidate against John Adams. Jefferson lost to Adams, placing him in the awkward position of Vice President and political opponent to the president. The late 1790s marked a critical period in American history that not only brought the nation to the brink of war but also resulted in intensely partisan struggles that deepened the divisions in the American Congress and people. In 1798 Congress passed the Alien and Sedition Acts that were designed to silence and punish political opponents; Jefferson responded by secretly writing the Kentucky Resolutions, which pronounced these laws to be unconstitutional.

In 1800 Jefferson defeated Adams and Aaron Burr in the presidential election. Anxious to leave the partisan divisions behind and restore harmony he pronounced in his inaugural address "We are all republicans--we are all federalists." For Jefferson, his election marked a return to the ideals of the Revolution that had been abandoned during the previous decade. He called his election “the revolution of 1800;” it was a revolution in the principles of government as that of 1776 had been in form.

The major accomplishment during Jefferson’s first term was the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, doubling the size of the United States. Even before the purchase Jefferson had been planning a voyage of discovery across the continent to the Pacific. At the time, Jefferson was six years into what would be a seventeen year term as president of the American Philosophical Society, and he took full advantage of the expertise of its members to help in the preparations of the expedition. Jefferson had been elected to the APS in 1780, and he had long been a supporter of scientific inquiry and exploration. From 1781 to 1786 he served as a councilor of the Society, and even though his official duties prevented him from taking an active part in the organization’s affairs, he convinced the Society in 1783 that David Rittenhouse (1732-1796, APS 1768) should make an orrery to be presented to the King of France. Jefferson regarded himself as a champion and representative of American science, and he wanted to bring with him to Europe a very tangible piece of evidence for the scientific genius of America.

In 1791 Jefferson was elected vice president of the Society, a position he held until 1794. During this period he once again took advantage of his connection to the Society to promote an enterprise that he considered to be of great public service but that the government would not sponsor. In 1793 he enlisted the members to support the French botanist André Michaux (1749–1802) in his quest to "find the shortest & most convenient route of communication between the U.S. & the Pacific Ocean." Jefferson was forced to withdraw support before the expedition got underway when he learned that Michaux intended to aid the French Minister Genet in his efforts to arouse support for France. Still, Jefferson shared with the Society a commitment to the promotion of science, and in 1797, he was elected president of the Society. That the membership held Jefferson in high esteem is reflected in their rejection of his two offers of resignation, the first after the relocation of the seat of government to Washington, and the second in 1808, shortly before his retirement to Monticello.

In 1803 Jefferson did not hesitate to turn once again to its members in his quest to launch a scientific expedition. He chose his personal secretary Meriwether Lewis (1774-1809, APS 1803) as the leader of what he called the “exploring party,” and sent him to Philadelphia to consult with five members of the APS to acquire the necessary skills for making scientific observations. After spending several weeks at the Lancaster home of Andrew Ellicott (1754-1820, APS 1785), Lewis received instruction from Robert Patterson (1743-1824, APS 1783), Wistar, Benjamin Rush (1745-1813, APS 1768), and Benjamin Smith Barton (1766-1815, APS 1789). In the meantime, the Society’s secretary John Vaughan worked to obtain the necessary instruments to make scientific recordings. "The object of your mission,” Jefferson wrote in his detailed instructions to Lewis, “is to explore the Missouri river, & such principal stream of it, as, by it's course & communication with the water of the Pacific ocean may offer the most direct & practicable water communication across this continent, for the purposes of commerce.” He asked him to record observations "with great pains & accuracy to be entered distinctly, & intelligibly for others as well as yourself.” Lewis selected William Clark to be co-captain of the so-called Corps of Discovery, and in July 1803 he set out from Washington, D.C. to meet Clark in what was then the Indiana Territory. For the next three years, the Corps gathered extensive information about the geography, natural resources, and inhabitants on their journey from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean. The APS was rewarded for its support of the successful expedition when it became a major repository for many of the collected specimens and the original journals. Indeed, over the years Jefferson gave many objects to the Society; in 1819 the members thanked him for the “many important MSS. Documents, calculated to throw light on the history of our country, on the customs, manners, and languages of the Indian nations, and various other interesting national subjects.” The Society was especially grateful for his donation of “several as yet unedited MSS. volumes of scientific notes and observations by Messrs. Lewis and Clark.” Jefferson resigned as president of the Society in 1817; the next year the members honored him with election as one of the councilors, an office he retained until his death in 1826.

Jefferson was easily reelected as president of the United States in 1804; however, his second term turned out to be less triumphant. The outbreak of renewed warfare in Europe once again threatened American peace. As a neutral nation, the United States insisted on free trade with the belligerent nations, including Britain and France. However, each of these two powers demanded that the United States cease trade with its enemy. Britain in particular violated American neutrality by impressing American seamen, sending British ships into American waters, and seizing American vessels. Jefferson ultimately decided to attain concessions through economic sanctions. The embargo of American commerce and navigations was enacted by Congress in December 1807. This experiment in “peaceable coercion,” which lasted for almost a year, failed to reach its objectives. In fact, rather then leading to improvements in foreign relations, the economic effects of the trade restrictions as well as the efforts by the administration to enforce them produced primarily domestic discontentment. The embargo was repealed toward the end of his administration; three years later the United States went to war with Britain.

In 1809 Jefferson, who did not seek reelection for a third term, retired to Monticello. There he was surrounded by his daughter Martha Jefferson Randolph, known as Patsy, her husband Thomas Mann Randolph (1768-1828, APS 1794), and their children. In 1810 he described a typical day to a friend, "From breakfast to dinner [midafternoon], I am in my shops, my garden, or on horseback among my farms; from dinner to dark, I give to society and recreation with neighbors and friends; and from candle light to early bed-time, I read." In 1815 his library numbered around 6,000 volumes. He carried on an extensive correspondence with many individuals, writing about a wide variety of subjects, from political topics to scientific questions, from Indian languages to agriculture. He also drafted a memoir of his life to 1790, wrote a number of essays, and translated two works from the French. He completed what became known as the Jefferson Bible in which he tried to identify the real Jesus amid the corruptions introduced by theologians and ministers. Jefferson was a deist who regarded Jesus as a great moral leader rather then a divine figure.

In the mid-1810s Jefferson once again turned to one of his most important causes, public education. Even though a comprehensive plan was again rejected by the Virginia state legislature, Jefferson succeeded in gaining approval for a state university. The University of Virginia was chartered in 1819. Jefferson designed the buildings, including the “academical village,” helped recruit a faculty, drafted the curriculum, and acquired a library. In his epitaph, which he wrote himself, he chose to be remembered as the author of the Declaration of Independence and the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, and as the Father of the University of Virginia.

Jefferson’s final years were beset by financial problems that ultimately resulted in his bankruptcy. He was also troubled by the course of national politics, warning that the Missouri Compromise was a “fire bell in the night.” He died at Monticello at the fiftieth anniversary of independence, on July 4, 1826.

From the guide to the Thomas Jefferson, letters to and from various persons, 1791-1840, 1791-1840, (American Philosophical Society)



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