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t)a^>ar^ College Xibrar^
FROM THE BEQUEST OF
CLASS OF 1830
SENATOR FROM MASSACHUSETTS
FOR BOOKS RELATING TO
POLITICS AND FINE ARTS
i . . ?^i
3 *^-7</ A^^^ /j^^^v^^^^^-*'^*-*— «^.
^y^l^, .-C^^o-xy ^;/x2-<«^->..
3 ^^//^W^ A^n--^.>^0^2<^._^.
JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
THE PRIVATE LIFE OP
^ram iniinl^ mw Patmats.
WITH NOIEROTJS FAGCTtfTTiKaL
, REV. HAMILTON W. HERSON, D. D^
PBBSIPEXT OF OrVBEBLAirD OOLLXGB, KT.
GEARLES SORIBNER, 124 GRAND STREET.
/3 ^^i^^tr t/'*
Entebbd, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1862,
By CHARLES SCRIBNER,
In the Clerk's OfEice of the District Court of the United States, for the
Southern District of New York.
JOHN p. TEOW,
8TBSC0TTFCR, ANO XIiZCntOmBB*
48 ft 60 Greene Street,
MY OLD COLLEGE CHUM,
EEV. SILAS S. HAEMON,
OF SOKOBA, CALIFORNIA.
IN MEMORY OP
TH£ FOUR DELIGHTFUL YEARS
WE STUDIED, WALKED, AND TALKED TOGETHER,
SO OFTEN AND SO TRULY SAID,
HAEG OLIM MEMimSSE JUVABIT,
AS A TRIBUTE
TO HIS RARE ATTAINMENTS AS A SCHOLAR,
HIS SELF-DENYING TOILS AS A CHRISTIAN,
HIS TRUE NOBILITY AS A MAN,
BY HIS DEVOTED FBIEND,
This volume has been prepared firom entirely new ma-
terials, derived from sources hitherto unexplored. It was
the author's rare good fortune, some months since, to
make the acquaintance of Capt. Edmund Bacon, a now
aged and wealthy citizen of Kentucky, who was for
twenty years the chief overseer and business manager of
Mr. Jefferson's estate at Monticello. He obtained firom
him a large mass of letters and other documents in Mr.
Jefferson's own handwriting, giving directions as to his
farm, grounds, garden, stock of different kinds, and all
the various matters connected with his farm at Monti-
ceUo. He also spent several weeks in writing out, in
detail, Capt. Bacon's reminiscences of his venerated
employer. This work has been prepared exclusively
from the materials thus acquired. It is not therefore a
rearrangement of historical facts in regard to Mr Jeffer-
son, that were already known and accessible to the pub-
lic, but a presentation of those that are entirely new.
It does not come within the scope or design of this
work, to attempt any sketch of Mr. Jefferson's public life,
or any discussion of his political or religious opinions. Its
simple purpose is, so to describe his home, his personal ap-
JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
THE PRIVATE LIFE OF
<^rom inihilTi ntw Paintats.
WITH NUKEROXJS FACSDHUS^
EEY. HAMILTON W. HERSON, D. D^
PBSSipEirT or OVXBSBLAKD 00LL16S, KT.
OHAELES SORIBNEE, 124 GRAND STREET.
Oeen with Ifnia Jcffienon— Tlidr Sti^ in LandoB with MrsL
Adams— MrsL Adam^ Letlen— Unak» John TT#«Mf^ Joe
Foaset— A Fo^tire ShiTe— Senranis Freed hj Mr. Jeffienoo
— HisYiewBQf Shrrerj, 103
MB. JEFTZBSOS AT WASmSGTOST— HIS UBKAST.
Capt BaooD^a Yinta to Mr. Jefferson in Washington— Aj^iear-
snce of the Citj— The Prendent's Hoose—Its Domestic Ar-
rangements— SenranU from MoDticeIk>— Steward— Cook-
Carriage Drirer — ^Viritors — Dinners — Market — Expoise—
Horkig Borne Mr. Jeflferson's Goods and Servants— Snow-
Btorm— Ci^. Bacon lOstaken for the Preadent— Mr. Jeffer-
»(»^» Keeeiytion on the Way— Anxiety to See " Old Tom"—
His Reception at Home — His lihrary — Sale to Congress —
R^mortid to Washington— Sixteen Wagon Loads— His Lonnge
—WriOng-Tsble—Bible-Eeadmg— Chancellor Wythe's li-
MB. JEFF£B80N^8 HOSPITALITT.
His Visitors— Mr. Madison— His Appearance and Character— Mr,
Monroe— His Ability— Letters— A Bad Manager— What Made
him President— The Three Ex-Presidents Together— Other
Visitors Came in Gangs— Their Horses, and what they
Consumed— Mrs. Eandolph's Trouble to Entertain Them—
Mr. Jefferson's Eeason for Going to Poplar Forest— Reasons
of his Failure— Gov. Wilson C. Nicholas— Thomas J. Ran-
dolph — ^Reasons for Leaving Mr. Jefferson— The Parting-
Subsequent Correspondence — Capt. Bacon's Opinion of Mr.
Jefferson — Conclusion, 121
JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
INTEODUCTION TO CAPT. BACON.
DEATH OF JEFFERSON AND ADAMS— '* THOMAS JEFFERSON STILL SURYIYES,"
IN THE MEMORY OF HIS OVERSEER — ^VISIT TO HIS NEIGHBOR, CAPT. ROACH
— ANECDOTE OF JOHN RANDOLPH — INTRODUCTION TO CAPT. BACON — MR.
JEFFERSON AND THE UNIYERSITT OF VIRGINIA — SELECTION OF THE SITE —
LAYING OF THE CORNER-STONE — INTEREST IN THE ERECTION OF THE UNI-
VERSITY — ^MR. JEFFERSON'S LETTER OF RECOMMENDATION TO CAPT. BACON
—CAPT. bacon's HORSES — HIS KNOWLEDGE OF BLOODED STOCK — JOHN RAN-
DOLPH'S BLOODED HORSES — SUBSEQUENT VISITS TO CAPT. BACON — ^MANNER
OF TAKING NOTES AND PREPARING THIS VOLUME.
"Thomas Jefferson still sukvives!" were the
dying words of the elder Adams. At that mo-
ment the devoted family and friends, at Monticello
and at Quincy, were moving with the same noise-
less tread, and watching with the same breathless
interest, the closing scenes in the lives of those
illustrious men. Adams and Jefferson breathed
their last, July 4th, 1826 ; and the waves of grief
14, JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
fipom Quincy and Monticello soon intermingled and
overspread tlie land. The nation was in tears.
Adams and Jefferson were no more. The one by
his tongue, the other by his pen, had done more
than any others, by these means, to secure the lib-
erty, and independence of their country. That
country had lavished upon each her highest hon-
ors; and, as if in approval of their life-work,
Heaven had kindly ordained that both should die
upon the anniversary of that day that they had
done so much to make immortal
These pages are devoted especially to the mem-
ory of Jefferson. The dying utterance of the sage
of Quincy was not less the statement of a fact,
than a prophecy. Thomas Jefferson still survives.
Thomas Jefferson will survive so long as our coun-
try or its history endures. That he was the au-
thor of the Declaration of Independence ; that he
filled the highest posts of public trust at home and
abroad; that his name and influence are inter-
woven with the early history of his State and
country; that hc?%ras the founder of the Univer-
sity of Virginia; — ^these facts, and such as these,
are well known to all. In all these relations,
Thomas Jefferson stiU survives in history and in
the universal knowledge of his countrymen.
But it wiU doubtless be new to most of my
readers, that Thomas Jefferson stiU survives in all
MB. JEFEEBSON^ OVEBSEiEB. ^5
the mintitest details of his every-day home life at
Montioello ; as a &rmer, maTiTifacturer, and master ;
as a lover of fine horses, l^ogs^ and sheep ; as the
enthusiastic cultivator of fruits and flowers; as
the kind neighbor, the liberal benefactor of the
poor, the participator in the childish sports of his
grandchildren, the hospitable entertainer of swarms
of visitors that well-nigh ate up all his substance,
and consumed his life ; — ^in all these, and numerous
other relations, Thomas Jeflferson still survives in
the iron memory, and in the most devoted and ten-
der affection and veneration of a now aged man,
who was for twenty years the chief overseer and
business manager of his estate at Monticello. Such
is the fact
On a visit, some months since, with one of my
associates^ to a neighborhood in Trigg County, Ky.,
about twenty miles from my own home, our host,
Capt C. W. Boach, remarked: "I have a near
neighbor, Capt Edmund Bacon, who lived with
Thomas Jefferson at Monticello, as overseer, for
"We should be most happy to go and see him,"
was our response ; and very soon we were on our
way. Most naturally, as we rode on, our conversa-
tion turned on the distinguished men that Virginia
had given to the country and the world. Though
I doubt not my readers are as impatient for the
IQ JEFFERSON AT MONTIGELLa
introduction that was before us as we were, I am
sure they will pardon me for detaining them with
some of the details of that conversation,
Capt. Boach was a native of Charlotte County,
Va., the home of John BandolpL He had been
familiar with his appearance &om childhood, had
frequently heard him speak, had often seen him
driving about the country with four magnificent
blooded horses to his carriage, and his servants
following him with perhaps a dozen more equally
"high-bred" and fiery. He gave us a number of
anecdotes illustrating his eccentricities. One of
these was so very characteristic of the man, that I
must repeat it.
A Baptist clergyman, the Bev. Abner W. Clop-
ton, took charge of some Baptist churches in Char-
lotte County, and attracted unusual attention as
a preacher. He had been a Professor in the Uni-
versity of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill, and the
fame of his learning and eloquence drew large
crowds to hear him. Mr. Bandolph, whose solici-
tude for his servants is well known, employed
Mr. Clopton to preach to them, and generally at-
tended these services. On one occasion, having
been particularly moved by the sermon, he arose
at its dose and commenced an address to his sable
audience. As he proceeded, his feelings became
deeply enlisted, and in the most appropriate, beau-
ANECDOTE OF JOHN RANDOLPH. J^^
tiful, and eloquent manner, lie urged upon them
tlie importance of the great moral trutlis that the
preacher had presented to them. Mi\ Clopton told
Capt. Roach, a few days after, that no clergyman
could have spoken more appropriately or beauti-
fully. In conclusion, he expressed his great gratifi-
cation at seeing them there, said he was very glad
to provide preaching for them, was willing and
anxious to afford them all the religious privileges
they could desire, except night meetings. He could
not and would not tolerate them. He grew indig-
nant and bitter as he went on to speak of their evil
effects, and said there was nothing that he hated
worse, unless it was a mean, thieving overseer, to
whom, in his indignation, he applied another and
much stronger epithet, not at all in keeping with
the moral lecture he had just given. As quick as
thought he set about ^.extricating himself from the
awkward condition into which he had been led
by his passions, and very deliberately went on to
say, " Now if there were any common, vulgar peo-
ple here, they would perhaps go away and say
that I had used profane language ; but my clerical
friend here, who is a fine classical scholar, knows
that ^damned' means condemned; and therefore
I simply mean to say, an overseer that everybody
As we approached our destination, I remarked
18 JEFFEKSOX AT MONTICELLO.
to Capt. Eoach, that as it was so late in the after-
noon, we should have but a short time to stay, and
I Wiis anxious to spend as little time as possible in
general conversation, so that we might hear as
much as possible of Mr. Jefterson fi*om one who
had been with him so many years, and must have
known him so well.
" Give yourself no uneasiness about that," said
he. " Capt. Bacon is enthusiastic and entirely at
home on two subjects, and he never tires of talk-
ing about either. One is Thomas Jefferson, and
the other is fine horses ; and he easily passes from
one to the otlier. We shall not be in the house
many minutes before you will be certain to hear
something of Mr. Jefferson."
We entered the house, and were introduced to
Capt. Bacon as connected with the College at
Pidnceton. The form of our introduction was most
fortunate. It was pivotal. To Capt. Bacon's mind
the mention of a College most naturally suggest-
ed the University of Virginia, and Mr. Jefferson's
labors and solicitude in its behalf. He began at
oQce to give the early history of the institution,
and we soon found not only that he could talk
Mr. Jefferson, but that he was an uncom-
:iBKWsting talker, as the reader shall have
•» see for my pencil was soon in requi-
UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA. I9
" You know," said he, " that Mr. Jeflferson was
the founder of the University of Virginia. Let
me see if I can remember all the Commissioners.
There were Mr. Jefferson, Mr. Madison, Mr. Mon-
roe, Chapman Johnson, John H. Cocke, and some
others. They are all that I now remember. The
act of the Legislature, if I mistake not, made it
their duty to establish the University within a
mile of the Court House at Charlottesville. They
advertised for proposals for a site. Three men
offered sites, — ^Nicholas Lewis, John H. Craven,
and John M. Perry. The Commissioners had a
meeting at Monticello, and then went and looked
at all these sites. After they had made this ex-
amination, Mr. Jefferson sent me to each of them,
to request them to send by me their price, which
was to be sealed up."
"Do you remember the different prices?"
"I think I do. Lewis and Craven each asked
$17 per acre, and Perry $12. That was a mighty
big price in those days. I went to Craven and
Lewis first. When I went to Perry, he inquired
of me if I knew what price the others had asked.
I told him I did, but I did not think it would be
right for me to tell him. They had both talked
the matter over with me, and told me what they
were a-going to ask. But I told Perry that if he
20 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
asked about $10 or $12 per acre, I thought he
would be mighty apt to succeed. They took
Perry's forty acres, at $12 per acre. It was a
poor old turned-out field, though it was finely situ-
ated. Ml'. Jefferson wrote the deed himself, and I
carried it to Mr. Perry, and he signed it. After-
wards Mr. Jefferson bought a large tract near it
from a man named Avery. It had a great deal of
fine timber and rock on it, which was used in
building the University.
"My next instruction was to get ten able-
bodied hands to commence the work. I soon got
them, and Mr. Jefferson started from MonticeUo to
lay off the foundation, and see the work com-
menced. An Irishman named Dinsmore, and I,
went along with him. As we passed through
Charlottesville, I went to old Davy Isaacs' store,
and got a ball of twine, and Dinsmore found some
shingles and made some pegs, and we all went on
to the old field together. Mr. Jefferson looked
over the ground some time, and then stuck down a
peg. He stuck the very first peg in that building,
and then directed me where to carry the line, and
I stuck the second. He carried one end of the
line, and I the other, in laying off the foundation
of the University. He had a little rule in his
pocket that he always carried with him, and with
this he measured off the ground, and laid off the
UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA. 21
entire foundation, and then set tlie men at work
I have that rule now, and here it is," said Capt.
Bacon, taking it from a drawer in his secretary
that he unlocked, to show it to us. It was a small
twelve-inch rule, so made as to be but three inches
long when folded up. " Mr. Jeflferson and I were
once going along the bank of the canal," said he,
" and in crawling through some bushes and vines,
it fell out of his pocket and slid down the bank
into the river. Some time after that, when the
water had fallen, I went and found it, and carried
it to Mr. Jefferson. He told me I had had a great
deal of trouble to get it, and as he had provided
himself with another, I could keep it. I intend to
keep it as long as I live ; and when I die, that rule
can be found locked up in that drawer.
"After the foundation was nearly completed,
they had a great time laying the comer-stone.
The old field was covered with carriages and peo-
ple. There was an immense crowd there. Mr.
Monroe laid the comer-stone. .He was President
at that time. He held the instruments, and pro-
nounced it square. He only made a few remarks,
and Chapman Johnson and several others made
speeches. Mr. Jefferson — ^poor old man! — ^I can
see his white head just as he stood there and
" After this he rode there from Monticello every
22 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
day while the University was bniidingy unless the
weather was verj' stormy. I don t think he ever
missed a day unless the weather was very bad.
Company never made any difference. When he
could not go on account of the weather, he would
send me, if there was any thing that he wanted to
know. He looked after all the materials, and
would not allow any poor materials to go into the
building if he could help it. He took as much
pains in seeing that every thing was done right, as
if it had been his own house.^
After answering a great many questions in re-
gard to Mr. Jefferson, Capt. Bacon said he had a
great many of his letters, and proposed to show us
a specimen of his handwriting. He unlocked a
drawer, and brought us a paper, which most natu-
rally he prizes very highly, of which the following
is a copy :
"Wabm Springs, Aug. 18, 1818.
"The bearer, Mr. Edmund Bacon, has lived
with me twelve years as manager of my farm at
Monticello. He goes to the Missouri to look out
for lands to which he means to remove. He is an
honest, correct man in his conduct, and worthy of
confidence in his engagements. Any information
or instruction which any person msiy give him,
will be worthily bestowed ; and if he should apply
particularly to Gov. Clarke on his way, the Gov-
MR. JEFJ?i:ilSON'S LETTER.
emor will especially oblige me by imparting to
him his information and advice.
"Mr. Bacon has continued to possess the es-
teem, confidence, and good-will of his neighbors,
and of the family in which he has lived, without
any interruption to this day.
"Th. M. Eakdolph."
''September 14, 1820." '
I will here add, that Capt. Bacon has now re-
sided in Kentucky about forty years, and his neigh-
bors, who have known him during all that time,
would vouch as strongly for his character as Mr.
Jefferson and his son-in-law, Gov. Randolph, have
done. He is a man of wealth and character.
Our time was exhausted, and expressing our
great gratification at our visit, we arose to leave ;
but Capt. Bacon insisted that we should go to his
stable and see his horses. He had two of them
brought out and exhibited for our gratification.
They were magnificent specimens of that noble
animal. Their pedigrees for an indefinite period
backward were at his tongue's end, and he showed
a knowledge of blooded horses that I think would
have astonished any old Virginia connoisseur in
that line. He was certainly thoroughly Jefferso-
nian in his love for fine horses. He had taken the
o^ JEFFERSOX AT MONTiCELLO.
leading stock journals of the country for more tlian
fifty years, and seemed to know all about all the
most noted horses there had been in the country in
all that time. Like Mr. Jefferson, he has never
patronized nor in any way encouraged horse-racing.
He says, that though John Kandolph had some-
times a hundred* blooded horses, — the finest stable
of horses in Virginia, — he never trained them for
the turf — never allowed them to race.
On leaving, I told Capt. Bacon, that if my life
was spared, that would not be my last visit to
him. I felt that I had found a rich historical
placer^ that I was determined to thoroughly work,
as soon as I could find time to do so.
♦ « Charlotte Couxtt, Va., May 19, 1828.
^ :»:»«« 4c i( jjr^ Randolph is the Magnus Apollo of tliis
county. Every one knows and fears him. His power of sarcasm
and invective is such, that no one pretends to contradict him. He
has throo several plantations in this county, all of them extensive.
nU horses (I mean those which are never used) are worth, I suppose,
" Charlotte, April 10, 1827.
♦ ««♦»* "This part of Virginia has long heen cele-
Wtled fi* its breed of horses. There is a scrupulous attention paid
la U# pwservation of the immaculate English blood. Among the
BM)«^ <tt ihU day were snorting and rearing fourteen or fifteen stal-
^ C^ ifldoh were indeed fine specimens of that noble crea-
iho rest, Mr. Randolph's celebrated English horse
, |» nine years old, and has never been ' backed.' " —
^ j^^ ^l^0Hgi» Letters of James W. Alexander, D,D. NeiD
/S*fcAf««r. 1860, Pp. 95, 101.
TAKING NOTES. 25
I liave recently been able to accomplish that
determination. I have spent several weeks with
my host, to whom I was indebted for this intro-
duction, and day after day I have gone to Capt.
Bacon's, and listened to his reminiscences of his
venerated employer. He was never weary of talk-
ing on this theme, nor I of listening. At his fire-
side, around his hospitable table, strolling among
his blooded stock, and riding over his immense
plantation, he poured forth from the inexhaustible
storehouse of his wonderful memory the accumu-
lations of a score of the best years of his life, that
were spent at Monticello. It will be my object in
the pages that follow, to give the results of these
conversations. I shall not trouble the reader with
the thousand questions I have asked, but will give
the answers in narrative form, as nearly as possible
in Capt. Bacon's own language. He has frequently
remarked to me, that when he was a boy, there
were no such opportunities for education as now ;
that he had only an "old-field-school, picked-up
education ; " but the reader will see that he has
"picked up" a very terse, vigorous use of lan-
guage. This is no doubt largely due to the un-
conscious influence of Mr. Jefferson, for whom his
admiration is most profound, and was acquired in -
his twenty years' correspondence and conversations
with him in regard to his business affairs.
JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
In my visits to Capt. Bacon, I took notes of all
that he said of Mr. Jefferson. Sometimes he would
talk at length upon one subject, and at others
his conversation was perfectly discursive. But
wherever he went I followed him with my " notes,"
asking him questions and drawing him out when-
ever his mind* seemed most excited by his own
reminiscences upon particular themes. In this
manner we talked, and I wrote day after day, until
I had gained from him all the information I could
possibly acquire in regard to Mr. Jefferson. Hav-
ing in this manner filled a blank book with " notes,"
and having carefully looked over Capt. Bacon's
papers, and selected, by his permission, all those in
the handwriting of Mr. Jefferson, Mr. Monroe, Mr.
Randolph, and some others, I returned home with
my historical treasures.
In writing this volume, I have done very little
" editing," except that the results of these conversa-
tions are arranged, as far as possible, under the sub-
jects to which they appropriately belong. The
reader will bear in mind, that these reminiscences
go back over a period of from forty to sixty years ;
yet in no instance has Capt. Bacon referred to a
manuscript or written memorandum in regard to
any of the facts communicated. They are literally
"reminiscences." It is therefore well-nigh impos-
sible that there should be no inaccuracies in any
A KIND WORD.
of the statements. Should any reader make such
a discovery, I am sure that in the circumstances he
will need no exhortation from me, in behalf of my
aged friend, to
" Be to his faults a little blind;
Be to his virtues very kind."
Before proceeding with these renainiscences of
Mr. Jefferson, it will be proper for me more fuUy
to introduce Capt. Bacon to my readers. This I
shall do in the next chapter.
CAPT. bacon's autobiography.
BIRTH — FAMILY — EARLY ACQUAINTAKCK WITH MR. JEFFERSON — EMPLOYED BY
HIM AS OVERSEER — ^WITH HIM TWENTY YEARS — ^VISIT TO ST. LOUIS IN
1818 — THE PARTY — JOURNEY ON HORSEBACK — FORDING RIVERS — ^DEER,
WOLVES, AND WILD GAME ON THE ROUTE — GOV. COLES AND HIS SLAVES
AT EDWARDSVILLE, ILL. — ST. LOUIS A SMALL FRENCH SETTLEMENT— GOV.
CLARKE — ^niS VIEWS OF THE FUTURE OF ST. LOUIS — CHOUTEAU'S FARM —
HIS ANXIElY TO SELL — REASONS FOR NOT PURCHASING RETURN TO MON-
TICELLO — SUBSEQUENT EMIGRATION TO KENTUCKY — SECOND VISIT TO MIS-
SOURI — THE KENTUCKY WIDOW — DETERMINATION TO RETURN AND MARRY
— SATISFIED WITH THE UNION.
" I AM now seventy-six years old. I was bom
Maxell 28, 1785, within two or three miles of Mon-
ticello, so that I recollect Mr. Jefferson as far back
as I can remember anybody. My father and he
were raised together, and went to school together.
My oldest brother, William Bacon, had charge of
his estate during the four years he was Minister to
France. After he was elected President, he told
my father he wanted an overseer, and he wished to
employ my brother William again. But he was
then quite an old man, and very well off, and did
not wish to go. He then inquired of my father if
EMPLOYED AS OVERSEER. 29
lie could not spare me. He replied that lie thought
I was too young, I was his youngest son, and not
of age yet. Mr. Jeflferson requested him to send
me to see him about it. My father was a com-
fortable farmer; had ten or twelve hands. He
was very industrious, and taught all his children to
work. Mr. Jefferson knew this. That was why
he wanted one of my father's sons. He was the
most industrious man I ever knew. When my
father told me Mr. Jefferson wanted to employ me,
I was keen to go ; and I determined that if he em-
ployed me, I would please him, if there was any
such thing. "When I went to see him, he told me
what he wanted me to do, gave me good advice,
and said he would try me, and see how I would
get along. I went to live with him the 2'7th of
the December before he was inaugurated as Presi-
dent ; and if I had remained with him from the
8th of October to the 27th of December, the year
that I left him, I should have been with him pre-
cisely twenty years.
" Some time before I left him, I determined to
go West and buy land upon which to settle, and
Mr. Jefferson recommended me to go to the Mis-
souri. It was a territory then, and there was a
great deal of talk about it. At the time that we
had arranged that I should go and look at the
country, Mr. Jefferson was at the Warm Springs.
30 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
In going to Lis Bedford farm, lie had somehow
caught the itch, and it troubled him a great deal,
and he went to the Springs to see if he could not
get rid of it. But he wrote me not to let his ab-
sence interrupt my plans, and said that in going, I
would pass directly through the yard where he
was staying, and he would see me there. That is
why that letter of his, that I showed you, is dated
at the Warm Springs.
"There were six of us started together on
horseback from Charlottesville for the Missouri, —
John D. Coles, Absalom Johnson, James Gamett,
William Bacon, and Jones — ^I forget his given
name ; he was as good company as ever lived. We
went by the Warm Springs, Hot Springs, Guyan-
dotte, and crossed the Big Sandy at its mouth ;
and then went on by Flemingsburg, Mt. Sterling,
Lexington, and Shelbyville, to Louisville. It was
a little settlement then, and the people were very
anxious we should settle there. When we crossed
the Ohio into Indiana, there was no road at all.
We took a pilot, and went to Vincennes. We had
no road, only a bridle path. From there we went
to Edwardswille, 111., where Edward Coles, after-
wards Governor of the State, then lived. I had
known him well in Albemarle County; we were
raised together. He was veiy anxious for us to
buy land there. He had bought a great deal. He
JOURNEY TO ST. LOUia 31
had taken about twenty negroes witli him from
Vii'ginia, who worked for him for a time, and made
improvements on his land. He finally sold his land
for a gi*eat profit, freed his negroes, and went back
to Virginia. From here we went on to St. Louis.
" There were no bridges on our route, and only
the large rivers, like the Ohio and Mississippi,
had ferry-boats. We had to swim all the smaller
streams. Some of the more difficult streams had
dug-out canoes, in which we rowed over, and swam
our horses behind and beside us. My mare was
one of the best animals ever backed. She was a
granddaughter of imported Diomede. She would
swim almost like a fish. She would seldom wet
me above the knees. Gamett's horse was a poor
swimmer — swam very deep. He called him Henry.
When we crossed a river, you could only see his
head out of the water, and Garnett would be wet
almost to the armpits. On our way we saw a
great deal of game, — ^gangs of deer, fowls, and
wolves. At one house where we stayed all night,
the wolves came about the house and howled so
terribly, that the dogs were afi-aid of them — ^^vould
not go out and attack them. They took several
pigs out of the pen, and we had to go out and
throw brands of fire at them to drive them away.
We saw no bears except some tame ones that had
been caught by the people when they were young.
;j-> JEFFERSON AT MOXTICELLO.
'' When we got to St. Louis, I called on Gov.
Clarke, and showed him the letter from Mr. JeflFer-
son, and I never was more kindly treated. There
was a small tavern near the ferry, but he insisted
that I should stay ^vith him. He knew a great
deal about the Western countr}\ He and Merri-
wether Lewis had explored the Missouri River.
St. Louis was a dingy little settlement, not much
larger than a good negro quarter. There was only
one narrow street three or four himdred yards
long. The houses were mostly old-looking, built
of rock in the roughest manner possible. A few
of them were plastered houses. They were all one
story. Gov. Clarke lived in a one-story plastered
house with two rooms. The fences around theii*
truck patches (gardens) were a kind of wicker-
work made of posts stuck into the ground, and
brush wattled into them. For miles around it was
a prairie countrj^ Back from the river some two
or three miles, there was a large spring, and near it
a windmill that did most of the grinding for the
settlement. I went out there several times. When
the wind blewTiard, it ground very fast. Most of
the people were French. Even the negroes spoke
French. Gov. Clarke was very anxious that I
should buy there. He advised me to look no far-
ther. He said that with so many large rivers com-
ing in near there^ and such a rich, fertile country,
CHOUTEAU'S FARM. 33
it must some day be a large place. He told me
there was a Frenchman named Chouteau who had
a great deal of land there, and was very anxious
to sell a thousand acres. He said the Frenchman
needed every thing but land. I went to see him,
and Clarke sent his clerk along with me to inter-
pret. He was almost as black as a negro, lived in
a low, squatty brick house, almost without furni-
ture. It had benches in place of chairs. He was
very anxious to sell, and only asked me three dol-
lars an acre for a thousand acres. I concluded to
look further over the Territory. We got a pilot,
and travelled several hundred miles over the coun-
try north and south of the Missouri River, and
returned to St. Louis. Chouteau sent to me sev-
eral times to urge me to buy of him, and Clarke
persuaded me to it very strongly. If I had only
taken his advice ! I had $3,000 in a belt around
me ; but by this time I had concluded I would not
take off my belt and pay out my money for all the
land in the Territory. You could raise abundance
of every thing, but could get nothing for it. There
was no such thing as a steamboat on any Western
river. Such a thing wasn't thought of then. Keel
and flat-boats were the only kind of navigation.
The people told me how they did. When they
had a surplus of bacon, flour, and venison, they
would load up a flat-boat and take it to New Or-
34 JEFFEBSOK AT XONTICELLO.
leans. It took four or five months to make the
trip, and they got very little for their load. It was
a solemn sight to see a boat start ofL The people
would assemble on the bank of the river, and
bid their friends fiirewelL It was very uncertain
whether they would ever see them again, for they
were going into a dead, sickly place, and they
had to walk aU the way back through an Indian
"I returned to Virginia without making any
pmtjhase, remained a few years longer with Mr.
Jefferson, and then removed my family to Ken-
tucky, and rented a farm until I could look over
the country and satisfy mysel£ I went to St.
Louis and looked over the State again, but could
not make up my mind to settle there. Chouteau
was still anxious to sell, and Clarke anxious that I
should buy ; but I concluded that Kentucky was
far enough West, and that I would go back and
Could Capt. Bacon have looked into the future,
he would have purchased the thousand acres which
are now covered by the city of St. Louis. It is
now very easy to see how he missed an immense
fortune. " If our foresight was as good as our
hindsight, it would be an easy matter to get rich."
But Capt. Bacon is not particularly to be pitied
in this regard. He purchased, at two dollars per
THE KENTUCKY WIDOW. 35
acre, a thousand acres of mucli better farming land,
where he now resides, to which he has since made
additions, until he now has about four thousand
acres. This, with a large amount of most valuable
stock, and (as his neighbors tell me) a good many-
thousand dollars at interest, make a fortune so
ample as to leave very little room for reasonable
regret in regard to his decision at St. Louis.
Moreover, there were potent reasons for that
decision. Gov. Clarke, in his prophetic portraiture
of the brilliant future that was before St. Louis,
and in all his other earnest and eloquent persua-
sives, was opposed by pleadings that he wot not
of. He was engaged in an unequal contest.
Capt. Bacon was a widower. His wife had
died in Kentucky. Kentucky, so famed as "the
dark and bloody ground,'' is not less famed for the
unerring execution of other than Indian archers.
Many a passing traveller has received their darts, —
has been taken captive. Capt. Bacon had seen a
Kentucky widow. He shall tell the rest.
We were sitting around his large old-fashioned
fireplace, as was our wont. Mrs. Bacon, who at
seventy-six is hale and hearty, and as active as
most ladies at thirty or forty, was sitting in one
" comer " by her window, busy with her knitting,
and absorbed with the conversation. Capt. Bacon
was near her, his face all aglow with his own
36 JEFFERSON AT HONTIGELLO.
reminiscences of long-gone years^ and the writer
was in the other comer, with pencil and note-book
in hand With a smile that indicated the most
perfect satisfaction with the whole result, Capt.
Bacon gave the following "explanation" of his
failure to make the St Louis purchase :
" The fact is, sir," said he, " I believe I should
have bought in St. Louis, if it had not been for the
old lady here. I had seen her. The last night I
was in St. Louis, I determined I would go back
and marry her, if possible, and settle here. We
have now lived together nearly forty years, and
I believe neither of us is tired of the union, or
anxious to secede."
THE MOUNTAIN, MANSION, GBOUNDS, FLOWERS, SHRUBBEB7, TEBRiCED OABDEN
— ^PRUIT, VEGETABLES — ^LETTER OF INSTRUCTIONS FROM WASHINGTON IN
REGARD TO STOCK, CROPS, ACCOUNTS, SHRUBBERY, ETa — ^THE ESTATE — ^DIF-
FERENT PLANTATIONS — PREMIUMS TO OVERSEERS AND SERVANTS — COPT OF
MR. JEFFERSON^S INSTRUCTIONS ON LEAVING HOME FOR WASHINGTON.
Capt. Bacojst says: — "Monticello is quite a higli
mountain, in the shape of a sugar-loaf. A winding
road led up to tlie mansion. On the very top of
the mountain the forest trees were cut down, and
ten acres were cleared and levelled off. This was
done before I went to live with Mr. Jefferson.
The house in the picture that you showed me,
(Frontispiece,) is upon the highest point. That
picture is perfectly natural. I knew every room
in that house. Under the house and the terraces
that surroimded it, were his cisterns, ice-house, cel-
lar, kitchen, and rooms for all sorts of purposes.
His servants' rooms were on one side. They were
very comfortable, warm in the winter and cool in
the summer. Then there were rooms for vegetables,
38 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
fruit, cider, wood, and every other purpose. There
were no negro and other out-houses around the
mansion, as you generally see on plantations. The
grounds around the house were most beautifully
ornamented with flowers and shrubbery. There
were walks, and borders, and flowers, that I have
never seen or heard of anywhere else. Some of
them were in bloom from early in the spring until
late in the winter. A good many of them were
foreign. Back of the house was a beautiful lawn
of two or three acres, where his grandchildren used
to play a great deal. His garden was on the side
of the mountain. I had it built mostly while he
was President. It took a great deal of labor. We
had to blow out the rock for the walls for the dif-
ferent terraces, and then, make the soil. I have
some of the instructions that Mr. Jefferson sent
me from Washington now. It was a fine garden.
There were vegetables of all kindsj grapes, figs, and
the greatest variety of fruit. I have never seen
such a place for fruit. It was so high that it never
failed. Mr. Jefferson sent home a great many kinds
of trees and shrubbery from Washington. I used
to send a servant there with a great many fine things
from Monticello for his table, and he would send
back the cart loaded with shrubbery from a nur-
sery near Georgetown, that belonged to a man
named Maine, and he would always send me direc-
LETTER OF mSTRUCTIONS. 39
tions what to do with it. He always knew all
about every thing in every part of his grounds and
garden. He knew the name of every tree, and just
where one was dead or missing. Here is a letter
that he sent me from Washington :
"* Washington, Nov. 24, 1807.
" ^ Sir, — Davy has been detained till now, the
earth having been so frozen that the plants could
not be dug up. On the next leaf are instructions
what to do with them, in addition to which I in-
close Mr. Maine's instructions as to the thorns. He
brings a couple of Guinea pigs, which I wish you
to take great care of, as I propose to get this kind
into the place of those we have now, as I greatly
prefer theu' size and form. I think you had better
keep them in some inclosure near your house tUl
spring. I hope . my sheep are driven up every
night, and carefully attended to. The finishing
every thing about the mill, is what I wish always
to have a preference to every kind of work. Next
to that, my heart is most set on finishing the gar-
den. I have promised Mr. Craven that nothing
shall run next year in the meadow inclosure, where
his clearing will be. This is necessary for our-
selves, that we may mow the clover and feed it
green. I have hired the same negroes for another
year, and am promised them as long as I want
JEFFERSON AT MOKTICELLO.
them. Stewart mnst be immediately dismissed.
If lie will do those jobs I mentioned before he
goes, he may stay to do them, and have provisions
while about them. Joe may work in the way you
proposed, so that the whole concern may be to-
gether. I place here the statement of debts and
£8 1*. 6i. =
James Carr, corn,
Thomas Barras, 18 hogs,
Hichard Anderson, floor,
John Rogers, beef and com,
James Butler, flour, .
Do. beeves, .
Robt. Burras, 20 barreb com,
Robt. Terril, 100 do.
Do. 10,000 lbs. fodder,
Your own balance,
. $101 00
By Mr. Craven, .
. 200 00
To the order of Kelly,
I shall remit
. 260 00
" * By these remittances and payments made and
to be made, you will perceive that the whole will
LETTER OF INSTRUCTIONS. 4]^
be paid off by the first week in February. Mr.
Craven called on me the 17tli, with your order to
pay him $100 the first week in December ; but he
said you would receive $200 of his money, and
that he should be extremely distressed if he could
not get the whole sum here. On that I gave him
my note to pay $200 to his order the first week of
next month, and you are to use his $200 instead
of what I intended to remit you at that time.
Last night I received from Mr. Kelly your order to
pay him $133^. To reconcile these two transac-
tions, you can use $100 of Craven's money towards
papng the debts. Pay Mr. Kelly $100 of it, in
part of your order on me, and I will remit $33^,
according to his order, by which means every thing
will be brought to rights. I shall write to him on
this subject, and shall be glad to learn that this
arrangement is made, and is satisfactory.
" ^ I tender you my best wishes.
"^DIRECTIONS FOR MR. BACON.
" ' If the weather is not open and soft when
Davy arrives, put the box of thorns into the cellar,
where they may be entirely free from the influ-
ence of cold, until the weather becomes soft, when
they must be planted in the places of those dead
42 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
througli the whole of the hedges which inclose the
two orchards, so that the old and the new shall
be complete, at 6 inches' distance from every plant.
If any remain, plant them in the nursery of thorns.
There are 2,000. I send Mr. Maine's written in-
structions about them, which must be followed
most minutely. The other trees he brings are to
be planted as follows :
" * 4 Purple beaches. In the clumps which are in
the southwest and northwest angles of the house,
(which Wormley knows.) There were 4 of these
trees planted last spring, 2 in each clump. They
all died, but the places will be known by the re-
mains of the trees, or by the sticks marked No. IV.
in the places. I wish these now sent to be planted
in the same places.
" ' 4 Robinias, or red locusts. In the clumps in
the KE. and S.E. angles of the house. There were
2 of these planted last spring, to wit, 1 in each.
They are dead, and two of them are to be planted
in the same places, which may be found by the re^
mains of the trees, or by sticks marked V. The
other 2 may be planted in any vacant places in the
S.W. and N.W. angles.
" ' 4 Prickly ash. In the S. W. angle of the house
there was planted one of these trees last spring,
and in the N.W. angle 2 others. They are dead.
3 of those now sent are to be planted in their
LETTER OF INSTRUCTIOXa 43
places, whicli may be found by the remains of the
trees, or by sticks marked VII. The fourth may
be planted in some vacant space of the S.W. angle.
" ' 6 Spitzenberg apple trees. Plant them in the
S.E. orchard, in any place where apples have been
planted and are dead.
" ' 5 Peach trees. Plant in the S.E. orchard,
wherever peach trees have died.
" ' 500 October peach stones ; a box of Peccan
nuts. The nursery must be enlarged, and these
planted in the new parts, and Mr. Perry must ini-
mediately extend the paling so as to include these,
and make the whole secure against hares.
" * Some turfs of a particular grass. Wormly
must plant them in some safe place of the orchard,
where he will know them, and keep otlier grass
from the place.'
" I think," said Capt. Bacon, " there were three
hundred acres inclosed in the tract about the house.
Mr. Jeflferson would never allow a tree to be cut off
from this. There were roads and paths winding
all around and over it, where the family could ride
and walk for pleasure. How often I have seen him
walking over these grounds, and his grandchildren
following after him as happy as they could be.
" The estate was very large. I did know the
exact number of acres, for I have paid the taxes a
44 JEFFEBSON AT MONTICELLO
great many times. There was about ten thousand
acres. It extended from the town lots of Char-
lottesville to beyond Milton, which was five or six
miles. It was not a profitable estate ; it was too
uneven and hard to work. Mr. Madison's planta-
tion was much the most profitable. It was divided
into four plantations, — ^Tuffiton, Lego, Shadwell,
and Pantops. There was a negro quarter and a
white overseer at each of these places. A negro
named Jim was overseer of the hands at Monti-
" We used to get up a strife between the differ-
ent overseers, to see which would make the largest
crops, by giving premiums. The one that deliv-
ered the best crop of wheat to the hand, had an
extra barrel of flour ; the best crop of tobacco, a
fine Sunday suit; the best lot of pork, an extra
hundred and fifty pounds of bacon. Negro Jim
always had the best pork, so that the other over-
seers said it was no use for them to try any more,
as he would get it any way. An overseer's allow-
ance of provisions for a year, was : pork, six hun-
dred pounds ; wheat flour, two barrels ; com meal,
all they wanted. They had gardens, and raised
their own vegetables. The servants also had re-
wards for good conduct.
" I had written instructions about every thing,
80 that I always knew exactly what to do. Here
are the instructions lie gave me when he went to
" * The first work to be done, is to finish every
thing at the mill ; to wit, the dam, the stone still
wanting in the south abutment, the digging for the
addition to the toll mill, the waste, the dressing oflf
the banks and hollows about the mill-houses, mak-
ing the banks of the canal secure everywhere. In
all these things Mr. Walker will direct what is to
be done, and how.
" * The second job is the fence from near Nance's
house to the river, the course of which wUl be
shown. Previous to this a change in the road is
to be made, which will be shown also.
"*As this fence will completely separate the
river field from the other grounds, that field is to
be cleaned up ; the spots in it stUl in wood are to
be cut down where they are not too steep for
culture ; a part of the field is to be planted in
Quarantine corn, which will be found in a tin can-
ister in my closet This com is to be in drills 5
feet apart, and the stalks 18 inches asunder in the
drills. The rest of the ground is to be sown in
oats, and red clover sowed on the oats. All
ploughing is to be done horizontally, in the man-
ner Mr. Kandolph does his.
46 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
" ^ 180 Cords of coal wood are next to be cut
The wood cut in the river field will make a part,
and let the rest be cut in the flat lands on the
meadow branch south of the overseer's house,
which I intend for a Timothy meadow. Let the
wood be all corded, that there may be no decep
tion as to the quantity. A kiln will be wanting
to be burnt before Christmas ; but the rest of the
wood had better lie seasoning till spring, when it
will be better to burn it.
" * When these things are done, the levelling of
the garden is to be resumed. The hands having
already worked at this, they understand the work.
John best knows how to finish off the levelling.
^ ^ I have hired all the hands belonging to Mrs.
tad Miss Dangerfield, for the next year. They are
aiae in number. Moses the miller is to be sent
Voaie when his year is up. With these will work
m common, Isaac, Charles, Ben, Shepherd, Abram,
l^vv« John, and Shoemaker Phill ; making a gang
tf IT kands. Martin is the miller, and Jerry will
' U» ^^^agon.
^Xlkose who work in the nailery, are Moses,
y; Jan\o Hubbard, Barnaby, Isbel's Davy,
LMn> Bedford Dav^^, Phill Hubbard, Bart-
rU They are sufficient for 2 fires, five
.,j^.^ ri^ 1 «m desirous a single man, a smith,
-\^li^jQ^Hllml to work with them, to see that
their nails are well made, and to superintend them
generally; if such an one can be found for $150 or
$200 a year, though I would rather give him a
share in the nails made, say one-eighth of the price
of all the nails made, deducting the cost of the
iron; if such a person can be got, Isbel's Davy
may be withdrawn to drive the mule wagon, and
Sampson join the laborers. There will then be 9
nailers, besides the manager, so that 10 may still
work at 2 fires ; the manager to have a log house
built, and to have 500 lbs. of pork. The nails are
to be sold by Mr. Bacon, and the accounts to be
kept by him ; and he is to direct at all times what
nails are to be made.
" ' The toll of the mill is to be put away in the
two garners made, which are to have secure locks,
and Mr. Bacon is to keep the keys. When they
are getting too full, the wagons should carry the
grain to the overseer's house, to be carefully stowed
away. In general, it will be better to use all the
bread corn from the mill from week to week, and
only bring away the surplus. Mr. Randolph is
hopper-free and toll-free at the mill. Mr. Eppes
having leased his plantation and gang, they are to
pay toll hereafter.
" * Clothes for the people are to be got from Mr.
Higginbotham, of the kind heretofore got. I allow
them a best striped blanket every three yBars. Mr.
48 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
Lilly had failed in this ; but the last year Mr. Free-
man gave blankets to one-third of them. This year
11 blankets must be bought, and given to those
most in need, noting to whom they are given.
The hirelings, if they had not blankets last year,
must have them this year. Mrs. Eandolph always
chooses the clothing for the house servants; that
is to say, for Peter Hemings, Burwell, Edwin,
Critta, and Sally. Colored plains are provided for
Betty Brown, Betty Hemings, Nance, Ursula, and
indeed all the others. The nailers, laborers, and
hirelings may have it, if they prefer it to cotton.
Wool is given for stockings to those who will have
it spun and knit for themselves. Fish is always to
be got from Eichmond, by writing to Mr. Jefferson,
and to be dealt out to the hirelings, laborers, work-
men, and house servants of all sorts, as has been
" * 600 Lbs. of pork is to be provided for the
overseer, 500 lbs. for Mr, Stewart, and 500 lbs. for
the superintendent of the nailery, if one is em-
ployed; also about 900 lbs. more for the people,
so as to give them half a pound a-piece once a
week. This will require, in the whole, 2,000 or
2,500 lbs. After seeing what the plantation can
famish, and the 3 hogs at the mill, the residue
must be purchased. In the winter, a hogshead of
molasses 'must be provided and brought up, which
INSTRUCTIONS. ' 49
Mr. Jefferson wiU fumisL This wiU afford to
give a gill a-piece to everybody once or twice a
" ^ Joe works with Mr. Stewart ; John Hemings
and Lewis with Mr. Dinsmore ; Burwell paints and
takes care of the house. With these the overseer
has nothing to do, except to find them. Stewart
and Joe do all the plantation work; and when
Stewart gets into his idle frolics, it may sometimes
be well for Moses or Isbel's Davy to join Joe for
" ^ The servants living on the top of the moun-
tain must have a cart-load of wood delivered at
their doors once a week through the winter. The
fence inclosing the grounds on the top of the moun-
tain must be well done up. This had better be
done before they begin the fence down the moun-
tain. No animal of any kind must ever be loose
within that inclosure. Mr. Bacon should not fail
to come to the top of the mountain every 2 or 3
days, to see that nothing is going wrong, and that
the gates are in order. Davy and Abram may
patch up the old garden pales when work is going
on from which they can best be spared.
" ^ The thorn hedges are to be kept clean wed
at all times. Mr. Dinsmore is to be furnished with
bread grain from the mill. The proportion of
com and wheat is left to his own discretion. He
50 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
provides his own provisions, and for Mr. Nelson
"^ There is a spout across the canal near the
head, which, if left as at present, will do mischief.
I will give verbal directions about it.
" ^ As soon as the Aspen trees lose their leaves,
take up one or two hundred of the young trees,
not more than 2 or 3 feet high; tie them in
bundles, with the roots weU covered with straw.
Young Davy being to carry Fanny to Washing-
ton, he is to take the little cart, (which must be
put into the soundest order,) to take these trees on
board. 3 Boxes in my study, marked to go by him
and Fanny and her things. She must take com
for their meals, and provisions for themselves to
Washington. Fodder they can buy on the road.
I leave $6 with you, to give them to pay unavoid-
able expenses. If he could have 2 mules, without
stopping a wagon, it would be better. They are
to go as soon as the Aspen leaves fall
" * The nailers are to work on the dam till fin-
ished, and then go to their shop. The verbal di-
rections which I gave Mr. Bacon respecting Car-
roll's farm, will be recollected and observed.
'^ ^ ADDITIONAL MEMOEANDUMS FOE ME. BACON.
" * When the work at the mill is done, and the
fence mended up on the top of the mountain, take
as mucli time with your hands as will fill all the
gullies in the field north of the overseer's house,
(called Belfield,) with bushes, &c., so that they
may be filling up by the time we are ready to
clean it up. The scalded places should also be
covered with bushes.
" * The orchard below the garden must be en-
tirely cultivated the next year ; to wit, a part in
Eavenscroft pea, which you will find in a canister
in my closet ; a part with Irish potatoes, and the
rest with cow-pea, of which there is a patch at Mr.
Freeman's, to save which, great attention must be
paid, as they are the last in the neighborhood.
" ' Whiskey is wanted for the house, some for
Mr. Dinsmore, and some sometimes for the people.
About 30 gallons will last a year. Mr. Merri-
wether or Mr. Eogers may perhaps each let us
have some for nails, or will distil it out of our
worst toll wheat.
"^In building the house for the nailer, there
should be a partition laying off about 8 feet at one
end, to keep his nails and rod in.
" ^ Get from Mr. Perry and Mr. Dinsmore, an es-
timate of all the nails we shall want' for the house
in Bedford ; and when you have no orders to exe-
cute for others, let the boys be making them, and
keep them separate from all others ; and when the
52 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
wagon goes up at Cliristmas, send what shall then
" ^ Mr. Higginbotham has all my transportation
to and from Eichmond under his care. He settles
with the watermen, and pays them. I do not wish
to have any accounts with them.
" ' These rains have possibly spoiled the fodder
you had agreed for. You had better see it, and if
injured, look out in time for more.
" ^ Mr. Dinsmore wants Allen's plank brought
up immediately. If you choose it, you can take
your half beef now, killing one for that purpose,
and sending the other half to the house, or to Mr.
ME. JEFFEESON's BLOODJED STOCK.
IMPORTATIONS OF MERINO SHEEP — ^THEIR GREAT INCREASE IN THE COUNTRY —
BARBARY SHEEP FINE MUTTON, BUT NOT POPULAR — CALCUTTA HOGS, TERY
FINE — ^MR. JEFFERSON'S OBJECT IN THE IMPORTATION OF STOCK — HIS PAS-
SION FOR BLOODED HORSES — ^DESCRIPTION OF DIOMEDE, BRIMMER, WEL-
LINGTON, TECUMSEH, AND EAGLE — ^HIS TURN-OUT.
"Mr. Jeffeesoit was very fond of all kinds of
good stock. The first fdll-blooded Merino sheep in
all that country, were imported by Mr. Jefferson
for himself and Mr. Madison, while he was Presi-
dent. They were sent by water to Fredericksburg.
Mr. Jefferson wrote me to go with Mr. Madison's
overseer at Montpellier, Mr. Graves, and get tho
sheep. He said he knew no better way to divide
them, than to draw for the choice; and the one
who got the first choice of the bucks, take the
second choice of the ewes. When we got to Fred-
ericksburg, we were greatly disappointed. The
sheep were little bits of things, and Graves said
he would not give his riding-whip for the whole
lot. There were six of them — ^two bucks and four
54 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
ewes. He had the same instructions in regard to
dividing them that I had ; so I put my hand into
my pocket, and drew out a dollar, and said, * Head,
or tail ? ' He guessed, and I got the first choice.
There was a good deal of difference in the bucks,
and not much in the ewes. I got the best buck.
He was a little fellow, but his wool was as fine
almost as cotton. When I got home, I put a no-
tice in the paper at Charlottesville, that persons
who wished to improve their stock could send us
two ewes, and we would keep them until the lambs
were old enough to wean, and then give the own-
ers the choice of the lambs, and they leave the
other lamb and both of the ewes. We got the
greatest lot of sheep — ^more than we wanted ; two
or three hundred, I think ; and in a few years wo
had an immense flock. People came long distances
to buy our fall-blooded sheep. At first we sold
them for fifty dollars, but they soon fell to thirty,
and twenty ; and before I left Mr. Jefferson, Merino
sheep were so numerous, that they sold about as
cheap as common ones.
" Some years afterwards he imported, from Bar-
bary, I think, four large broad-tailed sheep. I have
forgotten their names. He sent these from Wash-
ington in his own wagon, which had gone there
with a load from Monticello. These sheep made
very fine mutton, but they were not popular — did
IMPORTED SHEEP AND HOGS. 55
not disseminate, and ran out in a few years. About
the time the first sheep were imported, Mr. Jeffer-
son imported six hogs, — a pair for himself, Mr.
Madison, and General Dearborn, one of his secre-
taries. He often visited Mr. Jefferson. He was a
large, fine-looking man. I remember his coming to
my house once with Mr. Jefferson, to look at my
bees. I had a very large stand ; more than forty
hives. Those imported hogs were the finest hogs
I have ever known. They were called Calcutta
hogs. They were black on the heads and rumps,
and white-listed round the body. They were very
long-bodied, with short legs; were easily kept;
would live on grazing, and would scarcely ever
root. They would not root much more than an ox.
With common pasturage, they would weigh two
hundred at a year old; and fed with corn, and
well treated, they would weigh three or four hun-
" Mr. Jefferson didn't care labout making money
from his imported stock. His great object was to
get it widely scattered over the country, and he
left all these arrangements to me. I told the peo-
ple to bring three sows, and when they came for
them, they might take two and leave one. In this
way he soon got a large number of hogs, and the
stock was scattered over that whole country. He
never imported any cattle while I was with him.
5g JEFFERSON AT MONTTCELLO.
We could always get remarkably fine cattle from
"But the horse was Mr. Jefferson's favorite.
He was passionately fond of a good horse. We
generally worked mules on the plantation ; but he
would not ride or drive any thing but a high-bred
horse. Bay was his preference for color. He
would not have any other. After he came from
Washington he had a fine carriage built at Monti-
cello, from a model that he planned himself.' The
wood-work, blacksmithing, and painting, were all
done by his own workmen. He had the plating
done in Eichmond. When he travelled in this
carriage, he always had five horses — ^four in the
carriage, and the fifth for Burwell, who always
rode behind him. Those five horses were Dio-
mede. Brimmer, Tecumseh, Wellington, and Eagle.
^^ Diomed^ was a colt of imported Diomede.
John W. Eppes, who married Mr. Jefferson's sec-
ond daughter, Mari^, bought Diomede for him in
Chesterfield County; gave £80 for him. Eippes
wrote Mr. Jefferson that he had bought him, and
Mr. Jefferson wrote me to send for him. When I
got him home, he was poor, but I had him in fine
order when Mr. Jefferson got home. He was a
fine high-formed bay horse, not as good for riding
as the others, but a fine harness horse. He became
blind, poor fellow.
CABRIAGE HORSES. 57
^^ Brvmmer was a son of imported Kuowlsby.
He was a bay, but a shade darker than any of the
others. He was a horse of fair size, fiill, but not
quite as tall as Eagle. He was a good riding
horse, and excellent for the harness. Mr. Jefferson
broke all his horses to both ride and work. I
bought Brimmer of General John H. Cocke, of
Fluvana County ; don't remember what I gave for
him. General Cocke was often at Monticello. He
used to ride a fine bay stallion called Eoebuck,
that he had rode in the war of 1812. Sometimes,
when he visited Monticello, he would send him \jo
my house, because he had rather trust him with
me than with the servants.
" TeGumseh. I bought him of old Davy Isaacs,
a Jew, who kept a store in Charlottesville. Mr.
Jefferson saw him in the field several times as he
was riding past, and he told me he was very much
pleased with him, and he wished I would make
some inquiries about him. I told him that I knew
the horse and his stock well. He sent me to buy
him. He was a fine horse, but tricky. He would
scare at a rock, or when a bird flew up, and jump
suddenly. Mr. Jefferson got a blind made that he
could attach to his bridle when he rode or drove
him, and in this way pretty much cured him.
" Wellington. I bought him out of an Augusta
County wagon, of a man named Imboden, a Dutch-
58 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
man. Gave £60 for him. He did not know his
value. He was a large bay horse, and matched
Diomede. He rode better than Diomede, but not
as well as the other two.
^^ Eagle. The last thing I ever did for poor
old Mr. Jefferson, was to buy Eagle for him for a
riding-horse. The last time he ever rode on horse-
baxjk, he rode Eagle ; and the last letter I ever got
from Mr. Jefferson, he described that ride, and how
Eagle fell with him in the river, and lamed his
wrist. I am very soiTy I have lost that letter. I
bought Eagle of Capt. John Graves, of Louisa
County. He was a bay, with white hind ankles,
and a white spot on his nose ; full sixteen hands
high, and the finest sort of a riding-horse.
" In his new carriage, with fine harness, those
four horses made a splendid appearance. He never
trusted a driver with lines. Two servants rode on
horseback, and each guided his own pair. About
once a year Mr. Jefferson used to go in his carriage
to Montpellier, and spend several days with Mr.
Madison ; and every summer he went to Poplar
Forest, his farm in Bedford, and spent two or three
"Mr. Jefferson always knew all about all his
stock, as well as every thing else at Monticello,
and gave special directions about it all. Here is
one of his letters :
DIRECTIONS AS TO FARM STOCK. 59
" * The sorrel riding-liorse is to "be kept for Mr.
Bacon's riding. If Arcturus has not been ex-
changed for Mr. Smithson's mare, I wish Mm and
the Chickasaw mare to be disposed of immediately.
I think $150 might be expected for him, and $100
for her ; but I would take a fair wagon horse ot
mule for either, rather than keep them. For Arc-
turus we ought certainly to get a first-rate wagon
horse or mule. I would prefer a mule to a horse
in both cases, provided they were large and docile.
" ' Jerry and his wagon are to go to Bedford
before Christmas, and to stay there tUl they have
done aU the hauling for my house there. He is
to start on the morning of Saturday, the 20th of
December, and take with Mm a bull calf from Mi%
Eandolph, and the young ram which we have
saved for that purpose. He is to proceed to my
brother's the first day, and stay there the Sunday.
He will take in there some things lodged there
last year ; to wit, a pair of fowls, some clover seed,
and some cow-peas, and proceed with them to Pop-
lar Forest. I promised the friends of the naUers
who came from Bedford, to let the boys go and see
them this winter; to wit, Jame Hubbard, PhUl
Hubbard, Bedford John, and Davy. They are to
go with the wagon, and assist in conducting the
bull and ram. They are to be at home the even-
ing of New Year's day.
60 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
"^In all cases of doubt, ask the advice and
direction of Mr. Randolph, who will be kind
enough to give it.
" ' K any beeves remain after I am gone, diive
them to Mr. Randolph's, for his use. I should like
to have 3 or 4 good milch cows bought, now giv-
ing ftdl milk, for the use of the overseer, and peo-
ple of every description. They should be such as
would make good beeves next autumn.
" ^ Wormley must cover the fig bushes with straw
rope. Th. Jefferson.'
'''Sept. 29, '06.'"
MR. Jefferson's manufactories.
iXOURINO MILL, VERY EXPEKSIYE, AND A BAD INVESTMENT — MR. JKPPERSON'S
INTEREST IN IT — LETTERS FROM WASHINGTON — SALE OF FLOUR IN RICH-
MOND— UNITED STATES BANK MONEY — ^NAILERY, VERY PROFITABLE — CLOTH
FACTORY, BLACKSMITH, CARPENTER, PAINTER.
" Mr. Jefferson's neighbors were very anxious that
he should build a flouring mill. There was a small
one there, but a large one was very much needed.
While he was President, they thought he had a
large salary, and that he was better able to build
one than anybody else. He was always anxious to
benefit the community as much as possible, and he
undertook it. It cost a great deal of money, and
was a very bad investment. I had the foundation
dug, and superintended its erection. I have had
quantities of letters from him, giving instructions
about that mill. He employed a man named Shoe-
maker, from the North, who was used to building
mills, to assist him in planning and building it. It
was built of rock. It was a large building, four sto-
ries high, and had four run of stone. The dam was
g2 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
three-fourths of a mile above the mill, and a canal
was made that distance along the bank of the river,
to bring the water to the mill. That dam and canal
cost thousands of dollars. Two-thirds of the way,
the canal was through blue mountain rock — ^not
limestone — that had to be blown out. It had to
be nine feet wide, to allow the bateaux to pass
through to Charlottesville. It all cost a great deal
of money. After the mill was completed, and we
had commenced making flour, there came a big
freshet, and swept away the dam. I never felt
worse. We had eleven thousand bushels of grain
in the mill, and coopers and other hands employed,
and I thought we were ruined. But it didn't move
him a bit. He never seemed to get tired of pay-
ing out money for it. He was always greatly in-
terested in its erection, and in carrying it on. All
my letters were fall of instructions about it. Here
are some of them :
" ' MEMORANDTOIS FOE ME. BACON.
" ' Do the abutment of the dam as soon as the
scow is ready, and get the scow made immediately.
Then deliver the scow, with a good strong chain of
sufficient length, to Mr. Shoemaker.
" * Stop the leak under the bridge just above
" ' FiU up the stone wanting at the waste.
LETTER OF INSTRUCTIONS.
"'Strengthen the bank of the canal at the toll
" ' Make the wagon way on the south side of
the great mill.
" ' Dig the foundation of the wall in the ground
floor of the great mill, whenever Mr. Maddox is
ready to do the wall, and level the floor.
" ' Keep the thorns constantly clean wed.
" ' In harvest time send all your hands to assist
Mr. Kandolph, and let them be with him through
his whole harvest, except when wanting to secui-e
our own oats.
" ' Wormly must be directed to weed the flower
beds about the house, the nursery, the vineyards,
and raspberry beds, when they want it
" * I wish him also to gather me a peck or two
of clean broom seed, when ripe.
" ' I have bought 3 mules of Mr. Peter Minor in
Louisa, which we are to bring home immediately.
They are to be broke immediately, but should not
be worked more than half their time.
" * Put the Jenny and our 2 mares to the Jack.
" ' Xrive wool to any of my negro women who
desire it, as well those with Mr. Craven as others,
but particularly to the house women here.
" * I think you should scarcely miss a day visit-
ing the mill, and the top of the mountain also, to
see that every thing is right at both places, and
(54 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLQ.
particularly that no animals of any kind get into
tlie inclosure at the mountain, or are turned at
large into it.
"^Pay great attention to the hogs and sheep.
We must get into such a stock as to have 30 kill-
able hogs every year, and fifty ewes. CoL Coles is
to have a ram lamb from us of this year. Let it
be the best. He will send for it when weaned.
" ^ Use great economy in timber, never cutting
down a tree for fire-wood or any other purpose as
long as one can be found ready cut down, and
tolerably convenient. In our new way of fencing,
the shortest cuts and large branches, aad even hol-
low trees, will come in for use. The loppings will
do for fire-wood and coal wood.
" ' If a couple more of good mules, two, or
rather three years old, can be got for fifty or sixty
dollars, at a credit of not less than 90 days from
the time I am informed of it, I shall be glad to
have them bought. I am told very fine maybe
got, and cheap, in Fluvana, and particularly that a
Mr. Quarles has some to sell.
'''May 13, 1807.'
"* Washington, Nov. 9, 1807.
"'I now inclose you $250, of which $100 is
for James Walker, $50 for Mr. Maddox, and $100
towards paying such of your debts as are most
LETTER OP INSTRUCTIONS.
pressing. Another like remittance the next month
will, I hope, begin to place you at your ease. Mi\
Peyton sent me an order from Maddox for $50, but
at the date of the order you had in hand that sum
for him. It will therefore be necessary for you to
get Mr. Maddox and Mr. Peyton to agree to which
of them this $50 is to be paid. If they do not
agi'ee, then it must be paid to Mr. Maddox, as I
have not made myself liable for it to Mr. Peyton.
I shall be perfectly willing that the waterman to
whom you are disposed to sell property should
bring up articles for me. I am just now sending
off to Kichmond 8 trunks of books and 4 othet pack-
ages, weighing in all about 5,000 weight, as I guess,
which will probably be in Kichmond in all the
last week of this month. They are well secured,
but would still require to be as well guarded as
possible against rain from above or the water of
the boat below. If your boatman will undertake
to have special care of them, they will be a good be-
ginning in your account. I tender my best wishes.
" ^ Th. Jefeeesok.
"*Mr. E. Bacon.'
"'directions eob me. BACOK.
"»Juno T, 1808.
" ' Consider as your first object the keeping a
fcdl supply of water to the mill, observing that
JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
whenever the water does not run over the waste,
you should take your hands, and having put in a
sufficiency of stone, then carry in earth and height-
en till the water runs steadily over the waste. It
ought to do this when both mills are running one
pair of stones ea<;h. Take Mr. Kandolph's advice
on these occasions.
" ' You will fiimish Mr. Maddox, while working
on the stable, with attendance, hauling, lime, and
sand, so that I may only have to pay him for lay-
ing the stone. I presume Mr. Dinsmore wiU let
him be of his mess while here. If objected to,
however, do for Mm what you can best.
" ' As soon as the sashes are ready for Bedford,
furnish Mr. Kandolph 3 of your best hands, in-
stead of his waterman, who are to carry the sashes,
tables, and other things up to Lynchburg, and to
give notice of their arrival to Mr. Chisolm, who
will then be in Bedford, and will have Jerry's
wagon there, which he must send for the things
to Lynchburg. In the mean time, they must be
lodged at Mr. Brown's, at Lynchbm'g.
" * Jerry is to go to Bedford with his wagon as
soon as Mr. Chisolm goes.
"*At harvest, give your whole force to Mr.
Randolph, to assist in his harvest ; the nailers, as
well as all the rest, except Johnny Hemings and
SALE OP FLOUR IN RICHMOND Q>J
" ^ Consider the garden as your main business,
and push it with all your might when the inter-
"^Kake and sweep the charcoal on the level
into little heaps, and carry them off. Kather do
this when the grass seed is ripe.'
" I used to sell a good deal of the flour in Eich-
mond. The mill was on the Fluvana, the north
prong of the James Eiver, and I used to send it
down on bateaux. I remember sending off at one
time three bateau loads — ^between two hundred
and fifty and three hundred barrels — ^made of new
wheat. I started on horseback in tiii;ie to get to
Eichmond before the flour. When I told the land-
lord I had new flour on the way, ^ Well, sir,' said
he, ^ you will be certain to get a good price for it,
for there is hardly a barrel in the city.' I had
notice circulated that a lot of new flour would
arrive, and be sold at the river at four o'clock.
There was a large crowd, and I sold every barrel,
at fourteen dollars a barrel, as fast as it could be
rolled ashore, and it didn't begin to supply the
demand. I got my money from the bank, and
stai'ted after supper, and rode home that night. It
was just sixty-three miles ; but I had a fine sorrel
mare that Mr. Jefferson appropriated for my use,
and I made it easily. As soon as I got home, I
gg JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
went directly to Mr. Jefferson's room with the
money. I remember it distinctly. It was the first
money of the old United States Bank I had ever
seen. The bills were new out of the bank, and
very pretty. Mr. Jefferson, you know, was always
very strongly opposed to the United States Bank.
As I paid it over to him, I remarked that it was
very handsome money. ^Yes, sir,' said he, ^and
very convenient, if people would only use it prop-
erly. But they will not. It will lead to specula-
tion, inflation, and trouble.'
" Mr. Jefferson had a nail factory a good many
years, which was a great convenience to the people,
and very profitable. He worked ten hands in it —
had two fires, and five hands at a fire. These
hands could clear two dollars a day, besides paying
for the coal and iron rods. After the embargo and
the war of 1812, we could not get rods, and were
obliged to give it up. We supplied the stores all
over that country with nails, and sold a great many
to the people to build their houses. I sold Mr.
Monroe the nails to build his house.
"Mr. Jefferson also had a factory for making
domestic cloth. He got his cotton from Eichmond
in bateaux. He had in his factory three spin-
ning machines. One had thirty-six spindles, one
eighteen, and one six. The hands used to learn on
the little one. He made cloth for all his servants,
MR. JEFFERSON'S MECHANICS. gC)
and a great deal besides. I liave sold wagon loads
of it to the merchants.
"He had a good blacksmith shop. A man
named Stewart was at the head of that. He was
a fine workman, but he would have his sprees —
would get drunk. Mr. Jejfferson kept him a good
many years longer than he would have done, be-
cause he wanted him to teach some of his own
" Dinsmore, who lived with him a good many
years, was the most ingenious hand to work with
wood I ever knew. He could make any thing.
He made a great deal of nice mahogany furniture,
lielped make the carriage, worked on the Univer-
sity, and could do any kind of fine work that was
wanted. Burwell was a fine painter. With all
these he could have almost any thing that he need-
ed made on his own plantation."
MR. Jefferson's personal appearance and habhs.
iiR. Jefferson's height — " straight as a gun-barrel" — health, strength,
COMPLEXION, self-possession — ^ANECDOTE — PERSONAL HABITS — EARLT RIS-
ING — ^HIS FIRE— TOBACCO— CARDS — DIET — INGENUITY — EXERCISE — ATTEND-
ANCE ON PREACHING — ANECDOTE — THE BAPTIST PREACHER — ^KINDNESS TO
THE POOR — FROST OF 1816 — ^ANECDOTE — ^THE OLD WOMAN AND THE MULE
DOLPHIN — BUSINESS HABITS— A WRITTEN ACCOUNT OF EVERT THING CROP
ACCOUNT — CONTRACT FOR WOOD — CONTRACT WITH CARPENTER — ^WRITTEN
CONTRACTS PREVENTED DIFFICULTIES.
" Mr. Jefferson was six feet two and a half inches
high, well proportioned, and straight as a gun-
barrel. He was like a fine horse — ^he had no sur-
plus flesh. He had an iron constitution, and was
very strong. He had a machine for measuring
strength. There were very few men that I have
seen try it, that were as strong in the arms as his
son-in-law, Col. Thomas Mann Randolph ; but Mr.
Jefferson was stronger than he. He always enjoyed
the best of health. I don't think he was ever really
sick, until his last sickness. His skin was very
clear and pure — -just like he was in principle. He
had blue eyes. His countenance was always mild
ANECDOTE—THE MILLDAM. ^^1
and pleasant. You never saw it ruffled. No odds
what happened, it always maintained the same ex-
pression. When I was soraetimes very much fret-
ted and disturbed, his countenaQce was perfectly
unmoved. I remember one case in particular. We
had about eleven thousand bushels of wheat in the
mill, and coopers and every thing else employed.
There was a big freshet — ^the first after the dam
was finished. It was raining powerfully. I got
up early in the looming, and went up to the dam.
While I stood there, it began to break, and I stood
and saw the freshet sweep it all away. I never
felt worse. I did not know what we should do. I
went up to see Mr. Jefferson. He had just come
from breakfast. ^ Well, sir,' said he, ^ have you
heard from the river ? ' I said, ^ Yes, sir ; I have
just come from there with very bad news. The
milldam is all swept away.' ^Well, sir,' said he,
just as calm and quiet as though nothing had hap-
pened, ^ we can't make a new dam this summer, but
we will get Lewis' ferry-boat, with our own, and
get the hands from all the quarters, and boat in
rock enough in place of the dam, to answer for the
present and next summer. I will send to Balti-
more and get ship-bolts, and we will make a dam
that the freshet can't wash away.' He then went
on and explained to me in detail just how he
would have the dam built. We repaired the dam
JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
as he suggested, and the next summer we made a
new dam, that I reckon must be there yet.
" Mr. Jefferson was always an early riser — arose
at daybreak, or before. The sun never found him
ip bed. I used sometimes to think, when I went
up there ve?*y early in the morning, that I would
find him in bed ; but there he would be before me,
walking on the terrace.
" He never had a servant make a fire in his room
in the morning, or at any other time, when he was
at home. He always had a box filled with nice dry
wood in his room, and when he wanted fire he
would open it and put on the wood. He would
always have a good many ashes in his fireplace, and
when he went out he would cover up his fire very
carefully, and when he came back he would uncov-
er the coals and make on a fire for himself.
"He did not use tobacco in any form. He
never used a profane word or any thing like it.
He never played cards. I never saw a card in the
house at Monticello, and I had particular orders-
from him to suppress card-playing among the ne-
groes, who, you know, are generally very fond of
it. I never saw any dancing in his house, and if
there had been any there during the twenty years
I was with him I should certainly have known it.
He was never a great eater, but what he did eat he
wanted to be very choice. He never eat much
DIET, INGENUITY, AND EXERCISE. ^^3
hog-meat He often told me, as I was giving out
meat for the servants, that vrhat I gave one of them
for a week would be more than he would use in six
months. When he was coming home from Wash-
ington I generally knew it, and got ready for him,
and waited at the house to give him the keys. Af-
ter saying, " How are all ? " and talking awhile, he
would say, " What have you got that is good ? " I
knew mighty well what suited him. He was espe-
cially fond of Guinea fowls ; and for meat he pre-
ferred good beef, mutton, and lambs. Those broad-
tailed sheep I told you about made the finest mut-
ton I ever saw. Merriweather Lewis' mother made
very nice hams, and every year I used to get a few
from her for his special use. He was very fond of
vegetables and fruit, and raised every variety of
them. He was very ingenious. He invented a
plough that was considered a great improvement
on any that had ever been used. He got a great
many premiums and medals for it. He planned his
. own carriage, buildings, garden, fences, and a good
many other things. He was nearly always busy
upon some plan or model.
" Every day, just as regularly as the day came,
unless the weather was very bad, he would have
his horse brought out and take his ride. The boy
who took care of his horse knew what time he
started, and would bring him out for him, and hitch
JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
him in liis place. He generally started about nine
o'clock. He was an uncommonly fine rider — ^sat
easily upon liis horse, and always had him in the
most perfect control After he returned from
Washington he generally rode Brimmer or Tecum-
seh until I bought Eagle for him of Capt. John
Graves, of Louisa Co., just before I left him.
" He was always very neat in his dress, wore
short breeches and bright shoe buckles. When he
rode on horseback he had a pair of overalls that he
always put on.
"Mr. Jefferson never debarred himself from
hearing any preacher that came aloDg. There was
a Mr. Hiter, a Baptist preacher, that used to preach
occasionally at the Charlottesville Court House.
He had no regular church, but was a kind of mis-
sionary — ^rode all over the country and preached.
He wasn't much of a preacher, was uneducated, but
he was a good man. Everybody had confidence
in him, and they went to hear him on that account.
Mr. Jefferson's nephews Peter Carr, Sam. Carr, and
Dabney Carr thought a great deal of him. I have
often heard them talk about him. Mr. Jefferson
nearly always went to hear him when he came
around. I remember his being there one day in
particular. His servant came with him and
brought a seat — a kind of camp stool, upon which
he sat. After Mr. Jefferson got old and feeble, a
THE BAPTIST PREACHER— THE POOR. ^5
servant used to go with him over the plantation,
and carry that stool, so that he could sit down
while he was waitmg and attending to any kind of
work that was going on. After the sermon there
was a proposition to pass round the hat and raise
money to buy the preacher a horse. Mr. Jefferson
did not wait for the hat. I saw him unbutton his
overalls, and get his hand into his pocket, and take
out a handful of silver, I don't know how much.
He then walked across the Court House to Mr.
Hiter, and gave it into his hand. He bowed very
politely to Mr. Jefferson, and seemed to be very
" Mr. Jefferson was very liberal and kind to the
poor. When he would come from Washington, the
poor people all about the country would find it out
immediately, and would come in crowds to Monti-
cello to beg him. He would give them notes to
me, directing me what to give them. I knew them
all a great deal better than he did. Many of them
I knew were not worthy — ^were just la^y, good-for-
nothing people, and I would not give them any
thing. When I saw Mr. Jefferson I told him who
they were, and that he ought not to encourage
them in their laziness. He told me that when they
came to him and told him their pitiful tales, he
could not refuse them, and he did not know what
to do. I told him to send them to me. He did
JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
SO, but they never would come. They knew what
" In, I think, the year 1816, there was a very
severe frost, and the com was ahnost destroyed. It
was so badly injured that it would hardly make
bread, and it was thought that the stock was in-
jured by eating it There was a neighborhood at
the base of the Blue Ridge where the frost did not
injure the corn. They had a good crop, and the
people were obliged to give them just what they
were disposed to ask for it. I went up there and
bought thirty barrels for IVIr. Jefferson of a Mr.
Massey — ^gave him ten dollars a barrel for it.
That spring the poor trifling people came in crowds
for com. I sent the wagon after what I had
bought, and by the time it would get back, Mr.
Jefferson had given out so many of his little orders
that it would pretty much take the load. I could
hardly get it hauled as fast as he would give it
away. I went to Mr. Jefferson and told him it
never would do ; we could not give ten dollars a
barrel for com, and haul it thirty miles, and give
it away after that fashion. He said. What can I
do ? These people tell me they have no com, and it
will not do to let them suffer. I told him again, I
could tell him what to do. Just send them all to me.
I knew them aU a great deal better than he did, and
would give to all that were really deserving.
THE OLD WOMAN AND DOLPHIN. ^J^J
" There was an old woman named * * * * who
used to trouble us a great deal. She had three
daughters that were bad girls — ^large, strapping,
lazy things — and the old woman would beg for
them. One day she went to Mr. Jefferson in a.
mean old dress, and told him some pitiful story,
and he gave hel* a note to me directing me to give
her two bushels of meal. I did so. The same day
she went to Mrs. Randolph and got three sides of
bacon — ^middling meat. There was more than she
could carry, and she had two of her daughters' ille-
gitimate children to help her carry it home. When
she got to the river, the old negro who attended
the ferry was so mad to see her carrying off the
meat that he would not ferry her over. So she laid
the meat on the edge of the boat, and they ferried
themselves across. When the boat struck the bank
it jarred the meat off, and it went to the bottom of
the river, and she had a great deal of trouble to
" Afterwards she went to Mr. Jefferson and told
him the meal I gave her was not good — ^would not
make bread, and he sent her to me again. I told
her the meal in the mill was all alike, and she could
only get better by going to the Blue Ridge for the
corn. She said she had no horse, it was too far to
walk, and she could not go. I told her I would
fiimish her a mule. Mr. Jefferson had an old mule
JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
that must have been thirty or forty years old, called
Dolphin. He was too old to work and we did not
like to kill him. His hair grew very long, and he
was a sight to look at. He was too old to jump
much, but he would tear down the fence with his
nose and go over the plantation pretty much as he
pleased. I was very anxious to get rid of the mule
and of the old woman too, and I thought that may
be if I loaned her the mule she would not come
back. So I told her she could have the old mule
and go and get her corn. She came and stayed over
night, so as to get an early start. My wife gave
her a coffee sack, and I gave her an order on Mas-
sey, and she started off on old Dolphin. When
she got up there the people knew nothing about
her, and she could do so much better begging, that,
sure enough, she never came back at all. Mr.
Jefferson used to enjoy telling people how I got rid
of the old woman and Dolphin. She soon sent for
het daughters. Two of them went up there ; but a
man named * * * * had taken up with one of
them, and he moved her off into another neighbor-
hood. He was a well-educated man, and much of
a gentleman. His poor old mother was a mighty
good woman, and she was so distressed about it
that it almost made her cra^y.
" Some six weeks or two months after the old
woman had gone, I saw something moving about in
DOLPHIFS HISTORY. ^J2
the wheat-field, and, sure enough, there was Dol-
phin home again. After this there was a couple
of Kentucky drovers named Scott and Dudley, from
whom we used to buy a good many mules for the
plantation, came along with a drove. I told them
about the trouble we had with Dolphin. They
said they would take him away so that he would
trouble us no more, and I gave him to them. They
sheared off his long hair and trimmed him up so
that he looked quite well. They found one in the
drove that matched him very well, and went on a
few miles, and sold the pair to Hon. Hugh Nelson.
He was a Congressman. He and Wm. C. Rives
married sisters, daughters of Frank Walker. He
was very wealthy and popular. I knew his father,
too. Col. Walker. He used to wear short breeches
and shoe-buckles. It wasn't long before Dolphin was
back, and I told Mr. Jefferson. He laughed and said,
' You treat him so much better than anybody else
will, that he will come back and see you.' When
Mr. Nelson's overseer came over for him I asked
him how old he supposed he was. He said he could
not tell. I then told him his history. He took him
off, and we never saw any more of Dolphin.
" Mr. Jefferson was very particular in the trans-
action of all his business. He kept an account of
every thing. Nothing was too small for him to
keep an account of. He knew exactly how much
30 JEFIiaiSON AT MONTICELLO.
of every thing was raised at each plantation, and
what became of it ; how much was sold, and how
much fed out. Here is one of his little crop ac-
counts. All the overseers had such. Some of
them used to grumble over them mightily. But I
told them we were paid by Mr. Jefferson to attend
to his business, and we ought to do it exactly as he
wanted it done. One of them to whom I gave one
of these little papers one day, after fretting a
good deal about it, said, ' Well, I believe if Mr.
Jefferson told you to go into the fire, you would
follow his instructions.'
ESTIMATE OF GRAIK
From Oct. 1, 1819, to July 7, 1820, 40 toeeh.
90 persons from Oct. 1 to July 7.20, 40 weeks, @ 4J b. a
week, ....... 180
70 hogs to be fattened, @ 1^ bar. a piece, . . 105
9 breeding sows @ 1 pint a day, from Dec. 1 to Mar. 10,
100 days, ...... 8
60 shoats @ i pint a day, 100 days, ... 9i
pigs ....... 5
6 beeves @ 2 gal. a day, from Dec. 1 to Mar. 1 (killing off)
say 90 days, ...... 27
Stable @ 14 gals, a day, Oct. 1 to July 1 (deducting 2 mo.)
210 days, 73i
1 plantation horse and 6 mules, @ 1 J bush, a day, Oct. 1
to July 1, 270 d., 81
Sheep, suppose 80, @ i pint from Deo. 1 to Mar. 16, 90 d., 11
4 oxen @ 6 galls, a day, Dec. 1 to May 15, 165 d., . 25
1 milch cow at the stable, @ 1 peck a day, 165 d., . 8
The other cattle to be fed on stalks, tops, husks, chaff,
5 1 ' i '
) C5 «* O ^ ^ ^
< ^ ^ ^ > J^
^ 2 '^ I
<;>rfr ^a;4 l^sf
§;. 1^4 ^ « K s! 4 i .
MR. JEFFEESON'S ACCOUNTS. g^
Oct. 1, com on hand in the mill, .
Mill @ 2 bar. a week, 40 weeks, .
Offal of 850 b. flour, @ 25 35
Do. to be bought at mill, 65
340 lbs. to be bought elsewhere, . . . ,68
" I reported to Mr. Jefferson every dollar that
I received and just what I paid it out for. The
first day of every January I gave him a full list
of all the servants, stock, and every thing on the
place, so that he could see exactly what had been
the gain or loss. In all his business transactions
with people, he had every thing put down in writ-
ing, so that there was no chance for any misunder-
standing. There was quite a vUlage at MUton. It
was the head of navigation for bateaux. A great
deal of flour, grain, and other produce was brought
from the western part of the State and shipped
there, the .wagons carrying back groceries and
other things that the bateaux had brought from
Richmond. This and other business employed a
good many families. Nearly all the families in
Mnton were supplied with firewood from IMr.
Jefferson's estate. They paid him five dollars a
year for what wood they would bum in a fireplace.
82 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
Mr. Jefferson wrote a blank form for me, and I
made a written contract with all the people who
got their firewood from his place, and once a year
I went aroxmd and made collections. Here is the
blank form that he wrote for me that I filled out,
and from whicli I copied all these contracts for
" ^ These presents witness that the subscriber,
Thomas Jefferson, has leased to the subscriber,
James MaiT, of the town of Milton, a right, in com-
mon with other lessees, to cut and take away Suffi-
cient firewood for one fireplace from the lands of
the said Thomas Jefferson, on the south side of the
road leading through from Milton towards CoUe,
for the year which began on the 1st day of Octo-
ber last past, and ending the 1st day of October of
the present year, 1813 ; the said James Marr yield-
ing and paying to the said Thomas Jefferson five
dollars on the 1st day of October closing the year,
which he covenants to do, and it is further agreed
that this lease, and on the same conditions, shall
continue from year to year until notice to the con-
trary be given by either party to the other. Wit-
ness their hands this Gt" day of February, 1813.
" ^ Witness, James Maer.
5 1 J I i i>:
I 1 l^^'4
WRITTEN CONTRACTS. 33
" He was just as particular as this with all his
business. Whenever I engaged an overseer for him,
or any kind of a mechanic, I always made a written
contract with him, that stated just what he was to
do, and just what pay he was to receive. In this
way he avoided aU difficulties with the men he em-
ployed. I used to write Mr. Jefferson's name so
often to contracts that I made for him, that I could
imitate his signature almost exactly. A good many
people could not tell whether he or I had written
his name. Here is one of my contracts with a car-
penter, written and signed by myself for Mr. Jeffer-
" ' It is agreed between Thomas Jefferson and
Richard Durrett, both of the county of Albemarle,
that the said Durrett shall serve the said Jefferson
one year as a carpenter. And the said Durrett
does by these presents oblige himself to do what-
ever work the said Jefferson shall require in the
business of carpenter work ; and the said Durrett
obliges himself to faithfully do his duty. The year
commences on the day that the said Durrett shall
take charge of the said Jefferson's employ; for
which year's service the said Jefferson agrees to
pay the said Durrett forty pounds, and to find him
four hundred and fifty pounds of pork, and a peck
of corn meal a week ; or, in case the said Durrett
JEFFERSON AT MOKTICELLO.
should have three in family, the said Jeflferson
agrees to find him three pecks a week, and to find
him a cow to give milk from 15th April to 15th
November. As witness our hands this 28th of Oc-
" ^ KlCHAED DUEEETT.
"*E. Bacon, for
" * Th. Jeffeeson.' '*
ME. Jefferson's faaiily.
UB. JEFFEBSON'S children — MARTHA MARRIED COL. TH. M. RANDOLPH — MARIA
MARRIED JOHN W. EPPES, AND DIED YOUNG — ^MRS. RANDOLPH LIKE HER
FATHER IN APPEARANCE, CHARACTER, HABITS, ETC. — ^MR. JEPFERSON'S IN-
DUSTRY — REMARKABLE STATEMENT — MRS. RANDOLPH'S CHILDREN — THEIR
NAMES AND FAMILY CHARACTERISTICS — MB. JEFFERSON^S DEVOTION TO
THEM — ^ADVICE — ^ANECDOTE — PARTICIPATION IN THEIR SPORTS — ^VISITS OF
SCHOOL CHILDREN TO MONTICELLO— A FIGHT — ^WILLLiM C. RIVES A PEACE-
MAKER — ^A FINE BOY — GOVERNOR RANDOLPH — ^HIS ECCENTRICITIES — HIS
HORSE " DROMEDARY '* — HIS ARREST BY WAGONERS-r-A BAD MANAGER —
SALE OF SLAVES — ^BILL OF SALE FOR MARIA — HIS TROUBLE TO BAISE
MONEY — LETTER — SALE OF EDY — RECEIPT — ^HIS FAILURE — CHARLES S.
BANKHEAD — ^HIS INTEMPERANCE — CHIVALRY — HEIGHT WITH WM. F. GORDON
— HIS RECEIPT FOR WIKNY AND HER CHILDREN.
" Mr. Jefferson had four cldldren. Two of them
died very young. The. other two, Martha and
Maria, were in Prance with him while he was Min-
ister. They were in school there. Martha mar-
ried Col. Thomas Mann Kandolph, afterwards Gov-
ernor of Virginia. Maria married John W. Eppes.
He afterwards went to Congress. He was a very
fine-looking man, and a great favorite with every-
body. Mrs. Eppes died very young, and was buried
at Monticello. She had one boy, Frank Eppes, a
86 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
fine little fellow. He used to stay at Monticello a
" I knew Mrs. Kandolpli as well as I ever knew
any person out of my own family. Few sucli
women ever lived. I never saw her equal. I was
with Mr. Jeflferson twenty years and saw her fre-
quently every week. I never saw her at all out of
temper. I can truly say that I never saw two such
persons in this respect as she and her father. Some-
times he would refer me to her, or she would refer
me to him, a half dozen times in a day. Mrs. Ran-
dolph was more like her father than any lady I
ever saw. She was nearly as tall as he, and had
the same clear, bright comple:sion, and blue eyes.
I have rode over the plantation, I reckon, a thou-
sand times with Mr. Jefferson, and when he was not
talking he was nearly always humming some tune,
or singing in a low tone to himself. And it was
just so with Mrs. Randolph. As she was attending
to her duties about the house, she seemed to be
always in a happy mood. She had always her
father's pleasant smile, and was nearly always
humming some tune. I have never seen her at all
disturbed by any amount of care and trouble.
Mr. Jefferson was the most industrious person I
ever saw in my life. All the time I was with him
I had full permission to visit his room whenever I
thought it necessary to see him on any business. I
knew how to get into Ms room at any time of day
or night. I have sometimes gone into his room
when he was in bed, but aside from that I never
went into it but twice in the whole twenty years I
was with him, that I did not find him employed.
I never saw him sitting idle in his room but twice.
Once he was suflfering with the toothache ; and once,
in returning from his Bedford farm, he had slept in
a room where some of the glass had been broken
out of the window, and the wind had blown upon
him and given him a kind of neuralgia. At all
other times he was either reading, writing, talking,
working upon some model, or doing something
" Mrs. Eandolph was just like her father in this
respect. She was always busy. K she wasn't read-
ing or writing, she 'was always doing something.
She used to sit in Mr. Jefferson's room a great deal,
and sew, or read, or talk, as he would be busy
about something else. As her daughters grew up,
she taught them to be industrious like herself.
They used to take turns each day in giving out to
the servants, and superintending the housekeeping.
I knew all her children just as well as I did my
o^vn. There were six daughters and five sons. Let
me see if I can remember their names. The boys
were Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, Benjamin
Franklin, Merriweather Lewis, and George Wythe.
38 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
The daughters were Anne, Ellen, Virginia, Corne-
lia, and a little thing that could just run about
when I came aAvay. Her name was Septimis, or
something like that* Only two of them were
married when I came away. Jeff, married Jane
Nicholas, daughter of Gov. Wilson C. Nicholas,
and Anne married Charles S. Bankhead. Anne,
Ellen, and Merriweather Lewis had the fresh rosy
countenance of the Jefferson family. The rest of
the family, as far as I can remember — ^I don't re-
member about the little ones — ^had the Randolph
complexion, which was dark and Indian-like. You
know they claim to be descended from Pocahontas.
Virginia and Cornelia were tail, active, and fine-
looking, with very dark complexions.
"Mr. Jefferson was perfectly devoted to his
grandchildren, and they to him. They delighted
to follow him about over the grounds and garden,
and he took great pleasure in talking with them,
and giving them advice, and directing their sports.
I have heard him tell them enough of times that
nobody should live without some useful employ-
ment. I always raised my boys to work. Mr.
Jefferson knew this, and it pleased him. On Sat-
urdays, when they were not in school, they often
cut coal wood for the nailery. They could cut a
cord a day and earn fifty cents. Governor Ran-
dolpli once told thein that if they would cut off the
bushes from a certain field, he would give them
twenty doUars. His boys would often go and work
with them like little Turks on Saturdays, so that
my boys could go with them arfishing. After a
while they finished their job and got their pay.
JSdr. Jefferson heard of it. One evening I heard
him talking with his grandchildren about it. He
told them my boys had got twenty dollars — ^more
money than any of them had got ; that they had
earned it themselves, and said a great deal in their
praise, and in regard to the importance of industri-
ous habits. Merriweather Lewis was a very bright
little fellow. I always thought him the most
sprightly of all the Eandolph children. He spoke
up and said, ^ Why, grandpa, if we should work
like Fielding and Thomas, our hands would get so
rough and sore that we could not hold our books.
And we need not work so. We shall be rich, and
all we want is a good education, so that we shall
be prepared to associate with wealthy and intelli-
gent people.' ^ Ah ! ' said Mr. Jefferson, and I have
thought of the remark a thousand times since,
^ those that expect to get through the world with-
out industry, because they are rich, will be greatly
mistaken. The people that do work will soon get
possession of all their property.' I have heard him
give those children a great deal of good advice. I
90 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
remember, once, hearing him tell them that they
should never laugh in a loud, boisterous manner in
company, or in the presence of strangera That
was his own habit.
" He took great pleasure in the sports and plays
of his grandchildren. I have often seen hini direct
them and enjoy them greatly. The large lawn
back of the house was a fine place for their plays.
They very often ran races, and he would give the
word for them to start, and decide who was the
winner. Another play was stealing goods. They
would divide into two parties, and lay down their
coats, hats, knives, and other things, and each party
would try to get all that the other had. K they
were caught in the attempt to steal they were made
prisoners. I have seen Mr. Jefferson laugh heartily
to see this play go on. The children about the
country used to enjoy coming there. It was a fine
place for them to play, and in the fruit season there
was always the greatest quantities of good fruit.
Jeff. Eandolph used very often to bring his school-
" Before the University of Virginia was estab-
lished, a man of the name of Oglesby taught a
school at Charlottesville. I think he was a Scotch-
man. I know he was a foreigner. He was a fine
teacher, and had a very large school. Thomas
Jefferson Eandolph, Wm. C. Rives, Walker Gil-
A FIGHT. 9]^
more, Vaul W. Southall, Wm. R Gordon, and a
host of other boys went to his school. ALnost
every Friday evening Jeflfl Randolph would bring
a lot of his mates to Monticello to play and eat
fruit. If they did not come on Friday they
were pretty certain to come on Saturday. I gave
them the keys of the house and garden, and very
often they all stayed there over night. One Satur-
day a lot of the schoolboys that were not invited
concluded that they would come also, and help
themselves to fruit. They went around the back
side of the garden, broke off the palings, and got in.
They then climbed the trees and broke off a good
many limbs, and did a great deal of damage. The
other party attacked them, and they had a tremen-
dous fight. The party that had broken in was
much the largest, and they could not drive them
off. They threw stones at the old gardener and
hurt him very badly. They sent to the mill for
me, and when I got there the other party wer^
gone, and some of Jeff.'s party were a good
deal hurt. Vaul SouthaH was very bloody. H§
had fought like a little tiger. Wm. C. Eive^
was one of Jeff.'s party. He was an uncommonly
fine boy, and was always the peacemaker among
the boys. Whenever they got into a difficulty
among themselves, they would aU say, ^ Let Willie
Eives settle it.' Both parties were always willing
92 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
to select liim aa umpire. So I said to him, ^ Willie,
why didn't you settle this matter without all this
fighting ? ' He was very much excited, as well as
all the rest of them. ^ Why, sir,' said he, ^ you know
that I am a little fellow and couldn't do much fight-
ing, but I called them all the hard names I could
think of, and then I started to turn Eompo loose
on them, and they all ran oflp.' Rompo was a very
fierce dog. I should like very much to see Wm. C.
Rives now. I suppose lie is quite an old man,
though I was a man grown when he was a little
boy. He was at Monticello a great deal Very
often he did not like the doings of the other boys,
when I gave them the keys to stay up there alone,
and he would come down and stay all night at my
house. He has stayed there many a night. The
other boys were too intimate with the negro women
to suit him. He was always a very modest boy.
I once heard one of the other boys make a vulgar
remark. He said, ' Such talk as that ought not to
be thought, much less spoken out' Mr. Jefferson
thought a great deal of him, and so did all the fam-
ily. I think it would have suited them all mighty
well if he had married Ellen. But I don't think
he ever courted her, and I don't know that she
would have married him if he had. He got in love
with Miss Walker and married her. I remember
Ellen was one day at my house, and my wife was
GOV. RANDOLPH'S ECCENTRICITIES. 93
joking her about liim, telling her what a fine thing
it would be, he was such a fine young man, and
had such a large property. After a while she said,
' Oh, he is too much of a runt to make anybody a
husband,' and ran off as fast as she could.
" Gov. Kandolph, Mr. Jefferson's son-in-law, was
a very eccentric man, and would often do the most
strange and laughable things. I remember, once,
going with him to Edgehill, his plantation, to look
after the hands that were at work in the harvest-
field, cutting and putting up the wheat. He looked
at the shocks, and a good many of them were not
put up to suit him. He was riding ' Dromedary.'
Suddenly he dashed away and rode him right
through a large number of the shocks, scattering
them in all directions. We then rode on to where
the overseer was engaged with the hands. After
getting through with all his business with the over-
seer, as he was leaving he told him he thought the
old bull must have been in the lot ; he had seen a
good many shocks torn down and scattered about
as he came along. The overseer looked at me and
laughed. He understood the matter perfectly.
" The main road from the western part of the
State to Eichmond ran between Monticello and
Edgehill. There was always a great deal of haul-
ing on that road, and teams were almost constantly
passing. They got in the habit of camping in the
94 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
lane just beyond Mr. Eandolph's house, and burnt
Ms rails, and made him a heap of trouble. He sent
his overseer one night to remonstrate with them
against burning his rails. There were a large num-
ber of them, and they just laughed at him, and
finally gave him a tremendous whipping. When
Mr. Eandolph heard of it he said he would go him-
self next time. He was tall, swarthy, and raw-
boned — one of the stoutest men I ever saw, and
afraid of nothing. He was generally dressed in the
most indiiferent manner, and was very queer any
way. The Randolphs were all strange people.
John Randolph, you know, was one of the most
eccentric men that ever lived, and I think Gov.
Randolph was full out as strange a man as he.
They were as much alike as any two steers you
" A few nights after the overseer was whipped,
they camped again, built their fires, were cooking
their supper, and Gov. Randolph went down to see
them. They soon discovered him, creeping about
very slyly and watching them, and thought it was
somebody trying to steal their horses. They were
often troubled in this way; negroes and others
would get their horses and ride them off, and they
would have a great deal of trouble to find them in
the morning. At length they gave chase, and he
allowed himself to be very easily taken. They ac-
GOV. RANDOLPH ARRESTED. 95
cused Mm of trying to steal their horses, said they
would have him punished, and demanded that he
should tell them where a magistrate lived. He
pointed to his own house, and told them that a
magistrate lived there. Two of them led him to it
It was the strangest-looking house you ever saw,
as strange as himself. They led him into the piaz-
za^ and he told them he would go in and get the
magistrate. He soon reappeared with his pistols,
let them know he had brought them to his own
house, stormed at them with his big grum voice in
the roughest manner until he had seared them suifi-
ciently, and then very calmly told them to be care-
ful whomHhey arrested hereafter, gave them some
good advice, and sent them away. I knew one of
those wagoners very well. He used often to tell
of it, and laugh at the way they were taken in by
" Governor Randolph was a very hard rider. It
was a very common thing with him when he was
Governor to start from Richmond after supper and
ride ' Dromedary ' home by daylight next morning.
He would do strange things with that horse. They
were just suited to each other. I have often seen
him take hold of his tail and run him up the moun-
tain as hard as he could go.
" Mr. Jefferson, Mr. Randolph and I were once
riding up the mountain together, and we over-
96 JEI'I-ERSON AT MOXTICELLO.
took an old bald-headed negro, who did nothing
but haul wood and water. * Isaac/ said Mr. Ban-
dolph, with his big gnini voice, * have you got any
tobacco ? ' ' Yes, master,' said he, taking oflp his hat
and making a low bow mth a great flourish, and
handed him the tobacco out of the top of his hat.
Mi\ Jefterson laughed and said, ' It comes from a
very shining place.'
" Governor Randolph was a very poor manager.
He often had to sell off negroes to pay his debts.
Here is a bUl of sale for a woman I bought of him.
She belonged to an excellent family of servants.
He wished me to take another woman instead of
her, but I prefeiTed her decidedly, and would not
do it, and, as he was obliged to raise the money, he
let me have her.
" ' BILL OP SALE.
" ' i hereby convey to Edmund Bacon, for the
sum of five hundred dollars, namely, in cash five
hundred dollars, and in his note of hand $
due on demand, a full and indefeasible right, title,
and estate in a female slave, Maria, daughter of Iris,
born at Edgeldll, this day put into his possession,
and I, for myself, my heirs, executors, administra-
tors, &C., the said title to the said slave do forever
warrant and defend to the said Bacon, his heirs or
MARU'S BILL OF SALE. 97
assigns. Witness my hand and seal tMs October
" ^ Th. M. Eaisdolph. [seal.]
" * Done in presence of
" ' William F. Caedd^,
" ' James O. Waxlees.'
"While he was Governor his debts troubled
him a great deal. I often loaned him money, and
he often applied to me to help him raise it from
others. When he must have it, and could get it in
no other way, he would be obliged to sell some of
his negroes. Here is one of his letters to me.
" It is superscribed :
" ^ Me. Edm. Bacon, by Phil.
" ' Deae Sie : It is so absolutely necessary to
me to have as much as $150 by to-morrow evening,
to send by express to pay into the Bank of U. S.,
and Bank of Virginia in Richmond, before 3 o'clock
on Wednesday next, that I am forced, against my
will, to importune you farther with the oflfer of
the little girl at Edgehill. Do you think it would
be possible for us to borrow that money between
us by 3 o'clock to-morrow ? I should have set off
down to-day, but the hope of succeeding to-morrow
98 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
SO as to do by sending, has stopped me. I am
obliged to be in Eicbmond on the Board of Public
Works week after next, and my presence is more
wanted now at Edgehill than Varina. Besides, my
^vife is really ill to-day. Could you prevail on
your mother to lend as much money ?
" ^ Your friend,
" ^ Th. M. Eandolph.
" ' Mb. Bacon. May 9, 1819.'
" I raised the money for him, and the next day
paid him two hundred dollars for Edy. She was a
little girl four years old. He gave me this receipt :
" ' Eeceived from Edmund Bacon two hundred
dollars for Edy, daughter of Fennel, now at Edge-
hill, and I bind myself to make a complete title in
the said Edy to the said Bacon. "Witness my hand,
this May 16, 1819.
"^Tn. M. Eakdolph.'
" He was finally unable to meet his obligations,
failed completely, and lost every thing. Mr. Jeffer-
son, in making his will,* had to take especial care to
prevent Mr. Randolph's creditors from getting what
property he left for Mrs. Randolph.
* See Mr. Jefferson's Will in the Appendix.
CHARLES S. BANKHEAD. 99
"Before lie died his mind became shattered,
and he pretty much lost his reason. He had no
control of his temper. I have seen him cane his son
Jeff, after he was a grown man. Jeff, made no resist-
ance, but got away from him as soon as he could. I
have seen him knock down his son-in-law Charles
L. Bankhead with an iron poker. Bankhead mar-
ried his daughter Anne. She was a perfectly love-
ly woman. She was a Jefferson in temper. He
was the son of a very wealthy man who lived near
Fredericksburg. He was a fine-looking man, but a
terrible drunkard. I have seen him ride his horse
into the bar-room at Charlottesville and get a drink
of liquor. I have seen his wife run from him when
he was drunk and hide in a potato-hole to get out
of danger. He once stabbed Jeff. Randolph be-
cause he had said something about his abuse of his
sister, and I think would have kiUed him, if I had
not interfered and separated them.
" One night he was very drunk and made a
great disturbance, because Burwell, who kept the
keys, would not give him any more brandy. Mrs.
Randolph could not manage him, and she sent for
me. She would never call on Mr. Randolph at
such a time, he was so excitable. But he heard
the noise in the dining-room and rushed in to see
what was the matter. He entered the room just as
I did, and Bankhead, thinking he was Burwell, be-
100 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
gan to curse him. Seizing an iron poker that was
standing by the fireplace, he knocked him down as
quick as I ever saw a bullock falL The blow
pealed the skin off one side of his forehead and
face, and he bled terribly. It if had been a square
blow, instead of glancing off as it did, it must have
" Bankhead came to me one Court day at Char-
lottesville and told me he did not want me and one
of our overseers that was with me to leave him that
day. He did not tell us what he wanted, and we
had no idea. We saw that he did not get drunk
that day as usual, and we were surprised at that.
Towards night he came to us and said he wanted
us to start home with him. We rode out of town
some distance towards Monticello, and he got off
his horse and hitched him to the fence, and re-
quested us to hitch ours and stay with him. We
still had no idea of what he was about, or what
he wanted of us. At length Phil. Barbour and
Wm. F. Gordon rode along. Gordon had been em-
ployed in a suit against Bankhead, and in making
his speech he had taken a lawyer's privilege and said
a good many severe things about him, for which he
had determined to fight him. Bankhead went out
immediately in front of Gordon and requested him
to get down ; said he wanted to speak to him. Gor-
don made some excuse, and declined. Bankhead
CHIVALRY— A FIGHT. JQl
asked him again, and Gordon, who seemed to have
no idea what he wanted, gave some reason that I
have forgotten, and again declined. Bankhead then
told him he had insulted him, and began to curse
him with all his might. He told him that he was
armed, and that if he did not get down, he would
bring him down — he would shoot him ; ^ but,' said
he, * if you will get down, I will throw away my
pistols, and agree to fight you with nothing but
what my mother gave me.' It was no use for Gor-
don to refiise, nor for us to try to prevent the fight.
He got off his horse, and he had hardly touched
the ground, before at it they went, and I never in
all my life saw such a fight. They fought and
fought, and neither seemed to get the least bit of
advantage over the other. They clinched several
times, and tried to throw each other down, but
both were too strong and supple. Neither could
get the other down. I never did see as even a
match. I think they must have fought a half an
hour, and both of them were as bloody as butchers,
when I told PhU. Barbour it would never do for us
to let them fight any longer — we must separate
them. So he took hold of Gordon, and I took
hold of Bankhead, and we just pulled them apart.
" Bankhead got the worst of it. One eye was
badly injured, and I think never did get entirely
over the hurt. Bankhead was the stoutest, but
102 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
Gordon had the l)est wind. I often heard him de-
scribe the fight, and laugh about it afterwards.
He said he thought of crying * Enough ! ' several
times, but Bankhead kept him so busy he hadn't
"I bought a negro woman and her two chil-
dren of Bankhead. Here is his receipt :
" * This writing proves that I have sold and re-
ceived payment for a negro woman named Winny,
and her two children, and that I promise and am
bound to give a bill of sale for s'd negro's, hav-
ing received payment.
" ' As witness my hand, &c.
"^Chas. L. Bankhead.
'''1st July, 1814."'
ME. JEFFEESON's SERVANTS,
MR. JEFFERSON AN INDULGENT MASTER — ^NOT WILLING TO HAVE HIS SERVANTS
OVERWORKED, OR WHIPPED — NAILS STOLEN BY JIM HUBBARD — ^HIS PENI-
TENCE AND FORGIVENESS — FAVORITE SERVANTS — ^THE HOUSE SERVANTS —
IN THE ROOM WHEN MRS. JEFFERSON DIED — ^HIS PROMISE NOT TO MARRY
AGAIN — MR. Jefferson's instructions in regard to his cider — sally
HEMINGS CROSSED THE OCEAN WITH MARIA JEFFERSON — ^THEIR STAY IN
LONDON WITH MRS. ADAMS — ^MRS. ADAMS' LETTERS — ^URSULA, JOHN HEM-
INGS, JOE FOSSET— -A FUGITIVE SLAVE — SERVANTS FREED BY MR. JEFFER-
SON — ^HIS VIEWS OF SLAVERY.
" Mr. Jefferson was always very kind and indul-
gent to Ms servants. He would not allow them to
be at all overworked, and lie would hardly ever
allow one of them to be whipped. His orders to
me were constant, that if there was any servant
that could not be got along with without the chas-
tising that was customary, to dispose of him. He
could not bear to have a servant whipped, no odds
how much he deserved it. I remember one case in
particular. Mr. Jeflferson gave written instructions
that I should always sell the nails that were made
in his nailery. "We made from sixpenny to twenty-
104 JEFFEBSON AT MONTICELLO.
penny nails, and always kept a supply of each kind
on hand. I went one day to supply an order, and
the eight-penny nails were all gone, and there was
a full supply of all the other sizes. Of course they
had been stolen. I soon became satisfied that Jim
Hubbard, one of the servants that worked in the
nailery, had stolen them, and charged him with it.
He denied it powerfiilly. I talked with Grady, the
overseer of the nailery, about it, and finally I said,
* Let us drop it. He has hid them somewhere, and
if we say no more about it, we shall find them.' I
examined his house, and every place I could think
of, but for some time I could find nothing of the
nails. One day after a rain, as I was following a
path through the woods, I saw muddy tracks on
the leaves leadiog off from the path. I followed
them until I came to a tree-top, where I found the
nails buried in a large box. There were several
hundred pounds of them. From circumstances, I
knew that Jim had stolen them. Mr. Jefferson
was at home at the time, and when I went up to
Monticello I told him of it. He was very much
surprised, and felt very badly about it. Jim had
always been a favorite servant. He told me to be
at my house next morning when he took his ride,
and he would see Jim there. When he came, I
sent for Jim, and I never saw any person, white or
blacky feel as badly as he did when he saw his mas-
HIS SERVANT JIM HUBBABD
ter. He was mortified and distressed beyond meas-
ure. He had been brought up in the shop, and we
all had confidence in him, Now his character was
gone. The tears streamed down his face, and he
begged pardon over and over again. I felt very
badly myself. Mr. Jeflferson turned to me, and said,
^Ah, sir, we can't punish him. He has suffered
enough already.' He then talked to him, gave hiTn
a heap of good advice, and sent him to the shop.
Grady had waited, expecting to be sent for to
whip him, and he was astonished to see him come
back and go to work after such a crime. When he
came to dinner — ^he boarded with me then — ^he told
me, that when Jim came back to the shop, he said,
^ Well, Tse been a-seeking religion a long time, but
I never heard any thing before that sounded so, or
made me feel so, as I did when master said, " Go,
and don't do so any more ; " and now Fse deter-
mined to seek religion till I find it;' and sure
enough, he afterwards came to me for a permit to
go and be baptized. I gave him one, and never
knew of his doing any thing of the sort again. He
was always a good servant afterwards
" Mr. Jefferson had a large number of favorite
servants, that were treated just as well as could be.
Burwell was the main, principal servant on the
place. He did not go to Washington. Mr. Jeffer-
son had the most perfect confidence in him. He
IQ^ JEFFERSON AT HONTICELLO.
told me not to be at all particular witli him — to
let him do pretty much as he pleased, and to let
him have pocket money occasionally, as he want-
" Once or twice every week while Mr. Jefferson
was President, I opened every room in the house,
and had it thoroughly aired. "When I was so busy
that I could not attend to this myself, I would
send the keys to Burwell, and he would air the
house, and was, if possible, more particular than I
was. He stayed at Monticello, and took charge of
the meat-house, garden, &c., and kept the premises
in order. Mr. Jefferson gave him his freedom in
his will, and it was right that he should do it.
" The house servants were Betty Brown, Sally,
Critta, and Betty Hemings, Nance, and Ursula.
They were old family servants, and great favorites.
They were in the room when Mrs. Jefferson died.*
She died before I went to live with him, and left
four little children. He never married again. They
have often told my wife, that when Mrs. Jefferson
died, they stood around the bed. Mr. Jefferson sat
by her, and she gave him directions about a good
many things that she wanted done. When she
came to the children, she wept, and could not speak
for some time. Finally she held up her hand, and
spreading out her four fingers, she told him she
♦ Mrs. Jefferson died in 1782.
MRS. JEFFERSOFS DEATH ^07
could not die happy if she thouglit her four chil-
dren were ever to have a step-mother brought in
over them. Holding her other hand in his, Mr.
Jefferson promised her solemnly that he would
never marry again. And he never did. He was
then quite a young man, and very handsome, and
I suppose he could have married well; but he
always kept that promise.
"These women remained at MonticeUo while
he was President. I was instructed to take no
control of them. They had very little to do.
When I opened the house, they attended to airing
it. Then every March we had to bottle all his
cider. Dear me, this was a job. It took us tWo
weeks. Mr. Jefferson was very particular about
his cider. He gave me instructions to have every
apple cleaned perfectly clean when it was made.
Here are his instructions :
"^We have saved red Hughes enough from
the north orchard to make a smart cask of cyder.
They are now mellow, and beginning to rot. I
will pray you, therefore, to have them made into
cyder immediately. Let them be made clean one
by one, and all the rotten ones thrown away, or the
rot cut out. Nothing else can ensure good cyder.'
"Sally Hemings went to France with Maria
]^Q3 JEFFERSON AT HONTIGELLO.
Jefferson when she was a little girL Mr. Jefferson
was Minister to Prance, and lie wanted to put her
in school there. They crossed the ocean alone. I
have often heard her teU about it. When they
got to London, they stayed with Mr. Adams, who
was Minister there, until Mr. Jefferson came or
sent for them. I have read a beautiful letter that
Mrs. Adams wrote to her sister, Mrs. Cranch, about
her. Here it is :
" * I have had with me for a fortnight a little
daughter of Mr. Jefferson's, who arrived here with
a young negro girl, her servant, from Virginia.
Mr. Jefferson wrote me some months ago that he
expected them, and desired me to receive them. I
did so, and was amply repaid for my trouble. A
finer child of her age I never saw. So mature an
understanding, so womanly a behavior, and so
much sensibility, united, are rarely to be met with.
I grew so fond of her, and she was so attached to
me, that, when Mr. Jefferson sent for her, they
were obliged to force the little creature away.
She is but eight years old. She would sit, some-
times, and describe to me the parting with her
aunt, who brought her up, the obligations she was
under to her, and the love she had for. her little
cousins, till the tears would stream down her
cheeks ; and how I had been her friend, and she
MRS. ADAMS' LETTERS. IQQ
loved me. Her papa would break her heart by
making her go again. She dmig romid me so that
I could not help shedding a tear at parting with
her. She was the fevorite of every one in the
house. I regret that such fine spirits must be
spent in the walls of a convent She is a beau-
tiful girl, too.' *
" Ursula was Mrs. Eandolph's nurse. She was
a big fat woman. She took charge of all the chil-
dren that were not in school. K there was any
switching to be done, she always did it. She used
to be down at my house a great deal with those
children. They used to be there so much, that we
very often got tired of them ; but we never said
so. They were all ,very much attached to their
nurse. They always called her ^ Mammy.'
"John Hemings was a carpenter. He was a
first-rate workman — a very extra Workman. He
could make any thing that was wanted in wood-
work. He learned his trade of Dinsmore. He
made most of the wood-work of Mr. Jefferson's
fine carriage. Joe Fosset made the iron- work. He
was a very fine workman ; could do any thing it
was necessary to do with steel or iron. He learned
his trade of Stewart. Mr. Jefferson kept Stewart
several years longer than he would otherwise have
done, in order that his own servants might learn
* Mrs. Adams' Letters, vol. ii., p. 179.
l\Q JEFFERSON AT KONTIGfiLLO.
liis trade thorougUy. Stewart was a very superior
workman, but lie would drink And Burwell was
a fine painter. He painted the carriage, and always
kept the house painted. He painted a good deal
at the University.
" Mr. Jeflferson freed a number of his servants
in his will I think he would have freed all of
them, if his affairs had not been so much involved
that he could not do it. He freed one girl some
years before he died, and there was a great deal of
talk about it. She was nearly as white as any-
body, and very beautiful. People said he freed
her because she was his own daughter. She was
not his daughter; she was 's daughter. I
know that. I have seen him come out of her
mother's room many a morning, when I went up
to MonticeUo very early. When she was nearly
grown, by Mi*. Jefferson's direction I paid her
stage fare to Philadelphia, and gave her fifty dol-
lars. I have never seen her since, and don't know
what became of her. From the time she was large
enough, she always worked in the cotton factory.
She never did any hard work.
" While Mr. Madison was President, one of our
slaves ran away, and we never got him again. As
soon as I learned that he was gone, I was satisfied
that he had gone with Mr. Madison's cart to Wash-
iQgton, and had passed himself off as Mr. Madi-
MR. JEFFERSON'S VIEWS OF SLAVERY. HI
son's servant. But Jeff. Eandolpli did not believe
it. He believed lie had hid himself somewhere
about the plantation, and he hunted everywhere
for him. Finally he said he was sure he Wjas hid
in the loft of the stable where we kept our mulea
I told him it was no use to look ; but he would
do it, and while crawling over the hay-mow, he
tumbled through. I thought the mules would
tread or kick him to death, but when he came out
he said the mules were as badly scared as he was,
when he fell among them, and did not move or
hurt him at all. We afterwards learned that he
went off with Mr. Madison's servant, as I had sup
posed. No servants ever had a kinder master than
Mr. Jefferson's. He did not like slavery. I have
heard him talk a great deal about it. He thought
it a bad system. I have heard him prophesy that
we should have just such trouble with it as we are
* Capt. Bacon is a stanch Union man, utterly opposed to the
whole secession movement.
MB. JEFFERSON AT WASHINGTON — ^HIS LIBBAEY.
CiPT. BACON^S VISITS TO MR JEFFERSON IN WASHINGTON — ^APPEARANCE OF
THE CITY — ^THE PRESIDENT'S HOUSE — ITS DOMESTIC ARRANGEMENTS — 8KR-
TANTS FROM MONTICELLO — STEWARD — COOK — CARRIAGE DRIVER — ^VISITORS
— ^DINNERS — MARKET — ^EXPENSE — AMOVING HOME MR. JEFFERSON^S GOODS
AND SERVANTS — SNOW-STORM — CAPT. BACON MISTAKEN FOR THE PRESIDENT
— ^MR. Jefferson's reception on the way — ^anxiety to see "old
TOM" — HIS reception AT HOME — HIS LIBRARY — SALE TO CONGRESS — RE-
MOVAL TO WASHINGTON — SIXTEEN WAGON LOADS — ^HIS LOUNGE — WRITING-
TABLE — ^BIBLE-READING CHANCELLOR WYTHE'S LIBRARY.
" I VISITED Mr. Jefferson at Washington three times
while he was President. My first visit was soon
after his inauguration. I went to take his carriage
horses. The second time I went he had got very
much displeased with two of his servants, Davy
and Fanny, and he wished me to take them to
Alexandria and sell them. They were married,
and had got into a terrible quarrel. Davy was
jealous of his wife, and, I reckon, with good rea-
son. When I got there, they learned what I had
come for, and they were in great trouble. They
wept, and begged, and made good promises, and
VISITS TO WASHINGTON. H^
made such an ado, that they begged the old gentle-
man out of it. . But it was a good lesson for them.
I never heard any more complaint of them; and
when I left Mr. Jeflferson, I left them both at Mon-
" The last time I visited Mr. Jefferson in "Wash-
ington, I stayed there sixteen days. This was
when I went to help him settle up his business,
and move home his goods and servants. He had
eleven servants with him from Monticello. He
had a French cook in Washington named Julien,
and he took Eda and Fanny there, to learn French
cookery. He always preferred French cookery.
Eda and Fanny were afterwards his cooks at Mon-
" Some days I was very busy attending to pack-
ing up his goods, getting in his bills, and settling
up his business. Other days I had very little to
do, and I would go up to the CapitoL I haven't
been in Washington since the British played the
wild there in the war of 1812. When I was there,
the President's house was surrounded with a high
rock wall, and there was an iron gate immediately
in front of it, and from that gate to the Capitol the
street was just as straight as a gun-barrel. Nearly
all the houses were on that street. I took a great
deal of pleasure in going to the Capitol and hear-
ing the debates.
114 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
" Mr. Jeflferson often told me that the office of
Vice-President was far preferable to that of Presi-
dent. He was perfectly tired out with company.
He had a very long dining-room, and his table was
chock-full every one of the sixteen days I was
there. There were Congressmen, foreigners, and
all sorts of people to dine with him. He dined at
four o'clock, and they generally sat and talked
until night. It used to worry me to sit so long,
and I finally quit when I got through eating, and
went off and left them.
" The first thing in the morning there, was to
go to market. There was no market then in Wash-
ington. Mr. Jefferson's steward was a Frenchman
named Lamar. He was a very smart man, was
well educated, and as much of a gentleman in his
appearance as any man. His carriage driver was
an Irishman named Dougherty. He would get out
the wagon early in the morning, and Lamar would
go with him to Georgetown to market. I have all
my life been in the habit of getting up about four
o'clock in the morning, and I went with them very
often. Lamar told me that it often took fifty dol-
lars to pay for what marketing they would use in
a day. Mr. Jefferson's salary did not support him
while he was President.
" We got loaded up ready to start home, and I
left Washington on the third of March. Mr, Jef-
MR. JEFFBRSON^S JOURNEY HOME. 1^5
ferson stayed to attend the inauguration, but over-
took us before we got home. I had three wagons
jfrom Monticello — two six-inule teams loaded with
boxes, and the other four sorrel Chickasaw horses,
and the wagon pretty much loaded with shrubbery
from Maine's nursery. The servants rode on these
wagons. I had the carriage horses and carriage,
and rode behind them.
" On our way home we had a tremendous snow-
storm. It snowed very fast, and when we reached
Culpepper Court House it was half-leg deep. A
large crowd of people had collected there, expect-
ing that the President would be along. When I
rode up, they thought I was the President, and
shouted and hurrahed tremendously. When I got
out of the carriage, they laughed very heartily at
their mistake. There was a platform along the
whole front of the tavern, and it was full of people.
Some of them had been waiting a good while, and
drinking a good deal, and they made so much noise
that they scared the horses, and Diomede backed,
and tread upon my foot, and lamed me so that I
could hardly get into the carriage the next morn-
ing. There was one very tall old fellow that was
noisier than any of the rest, who said he was bound
to see the President — ^'Old Tom,' he called him.
They asked me when he would be along, and I
told them I thought he would certainly be along
IIQ J£FF£KSON AT MONTIC£LLO.
that night, and I looked for him every moment
The tavern was kept by an old man named Shackle-
ford. I told him to have a large fire built in a
private room, as Mr. Jeflferson would be very cold
when he got there, and he did so. I soon heard
shouting, went out, and Mr. Jefferson was in sight.
He was in a one-horse vehicle — a phaeton — ^with
a driver, and a servant on horseback. When he
came up, there was great cheering again. I mo-
tioned to him to follow me ; took him straight to
his room, and locked the door. The tall old fellow
came and knocked very often, but I would not let
him in. I told Mr. Jefferson not to mind him, he
was drunk. Finally the door was opened, and they
inished in and filled the room. It was as fiill as I
ever saw a bar-room. He stood up, and made a
short address to them. Afterwards some of them
told him how they had mistaken me for him. He
went on next day, and reached Monticello before
we did, so that I did not see the large reception
that the people of Albemarle gave him when he
•* Mr. Jefferson was present at the inangaration of his snccessor,
and soon afterwards set out for home. The inhabitants of the county
of his birth and residence (Albemarle) had proposed to meet and
escort him to Monticello, with imposing ceremonies. He quietly put
aside the request, by' declaring that he could not decide on the day
of his return, and he added :
His LIBRARY. H^J
" Mr. Jeffersono^vd a very large library. When
the British burnt Washington, the library that be-
longed to Congress was. destroyed, and Mr. Jeffer-
" But it is a suflScient happiness to me to know that my fellow-
citizens of the country generally entertain for me the kind senti-
ments which have prompted this proposition, without giving to so
many the trouhle of leaving their homes to meet a single individual.
I shall have opportunities of taking them individually by the hand at
our Court House and other public places, and of exchanging assur-
ances of mutual esteem. Certainly it is the greatest consolation to
me to know, that in returning to the bosom of my native county, I
shall be again in the midst of their kind affections ; and I can say
with truth that my return to them will make me happier than I have
been since I left them."
The proposed ovation gave way to an address, and it was thus an-
"To THE Inhabitants of Albemable County, in Yibginia.
•♦April 8, 1809.
"Returning to the scenes of my birth and early life, to the soci-
ety of those with whom I was raised, and who have been ever dear
to me, I receive, fellow-citizens and neighbors, with inexpressible
pleasure, the cordial welcome you are so good as to give me. Long
absent on duties which the history of a wonderful era made incum-
bent on those called to them, the pomp, the turmoil, the bustle
and splendor of oflSce, have drawn but deeper sighs for the tranquil
and irresponsible occupations of private life, for the enjoyment of an
affectionate intercourse with you, my neighbors and friends, and the
endearments of family love, which nature has given us all, as the
sweetener of every hour. For these I gladly lay down the distress-
ing burden of power, and seek, with my fellow-citizens, repose and
safety under the watchful cares, and labors, and perplexities, of
younger and abler minds. The anxieties you express to administer
to my happiness, do, of themselves, confer that happiness ; and the
118 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
son sold them his. He directed me to have it
packed in boxes and sent to Washington. John
Hemings, one of his servants, made the boxes, and
Burwell and I packed them up mostly. Dinsmore
helped us some, and the girls, Ellen, Virginia, and
Cornelia would come in sometimes and sort them
out, and help us a good deal. There was an im-
mense quantity of them. There were sixteen
wagon loads. I engaged the teams.' Each wagon
was to carry three thousand pounds for a load, and
to have four dollars a day for delivering them in
Washington. If they carried more than three
thousand pounds, they were to have extra pay.
There were all kinds of books — ^books in a great
many languages that I knew nothing about. There
were a great many religious books among them —
measure will be complete, if my endeavors to fulfil my duties in the
several public stations to which I have been called, have obtained for
me the approbation of my country. The part which I have acted on
the theatre of public life, has been before them, and to their sentence
I submit it ; but the testimony of my native county, of the individ-
uals who have known me in private life, to my conduct in its various
duties and relations, is the more grateful, as proceeding from eye-
witnesses, and observers, from triers of the vicinage. Of you, then,
my neighbors, I may ask, in the face of the world, " Whose ox have
I taken, or whom have I defrauded ? Whom have I oppressed, or of
whose hand have I received a bribe to blind mine eyes therewith ? "
On your verdict I rest with conscious security. Your wishes for
my happiness are received with just sensibility, and I offer nincere
prayers for your own welfare and prosperity."
[Bakdall'o Lifb of Jkffkbsov, toL iil^ pp. 806, 806.]
HIS BIBLE READING. Hg
more than I have ever seen anywhere else. All
the time Mr. Jeflferson was President I had the
keys to his library, and I could go in and look over
the books, and take out any one that I wished, and
read and return it. I have written a good many
letters from that library to Mr. Jeflferson in Wash-
ington. Mr. Jeflferson had a sofa or lounge upon
which he could sit or recline, and a small table
on rollers, upon which he could write, or lay his
books. Sometimes he would draw this table up
before the sofa, and sit and read or write; and
other times he would recline on his sofa, with his
table rolled up the sofa, astride it. He had a large
Bible, which nearly always lay at the head of his
sofa. Many and many a time I have gone into his
room and found him reading that Bible. You re-
member I told you about riding all night from
Richmond, after selling that flour, and going into his
room very early in the morning, and paying over to
him the new United States Bank money. That
was one of the times that I found him with the
big Bible open before him on his little table, and
he busy reading it. And I have seen him reading
it in that way many a time. Some people, you
know, say he was an atheist. Now if he was an
atheist, what did he want with all those religious
books, and why did he spend so much of his time
reading his Bible ?.
J20 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
"When Chancellor Wythe died, he willed to
Mr. Jeflferson his library. It was very large, and
nearly filled up the lxx)m of the one he sold to
Congress. Mr. Jeflferson studied law with Chan-
cellor Wythe. They thought a great deal of each
MR. JEFFEBSOK's HOSPITALITY.
HIS VISITORS — MR. MADISON — ^HIS APPEARANCE AND CHARACTER — ^MR. MONROE
— HIS ABILITY — ^LETTERS — A BAD MANAGER — ^WHAT MADE HIM PRESIDENT
THE THREE EX-PRESIDENTS TOGETHER — OTHER VISITORS CAME IN GANGS —
THEIR HORSES, AND WHAT THEY CONSUMED — MRS. RANDOLPH'S TROUBLE
TO ENTERTAIN THEM — MR. JEFFERSON^S REASON FOR GOING TO POPLAR
FOREST — REASONS OP HIS FAILURE — GOV. WILSON C. NICHOLAS — THOMAS
J. RANDOLPH — REASONS FOR LEAVING MR. JEFFERSON — ^THE PARTING SUB-
SEQUENT CORRESPONDENCE^APT. BACON'S OPINION OF MR. JEFFERSON —
" Mr. Jeffersok always had a great deal of com-
pany. He enjoyed seeing Ms Mends very inucli.
Mr. Madison was very often at Monticello. He
generally stayed there when he attended Court at
Charlottesville. He was a fine man. He had a
very solid look. I always thought he looked like
a Methodist preacher ; he wore his hair as they did
then. Mr. Monros, too, was at Monticello a great
deal. I have seen him hundreds of times, and done
a great deal of business with him. I sold him the
nails, from Mr. Jefferson's nailery, for his house. I
have had a great many letters from him. He was
a miserable writer. Mr. Jefferson and Mr. Madi-
122 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
son both wrote a plain, beautiful hand, but you
could write better with your toes than Mr. Monroe
wrote. I have heard Governor Morris say, that
once, after Mr. Monroe had transcribed a paper, he
could not read it. (Laughed heartily.) Here are
two of Mr. Monroe's letters :
" ^ Seb, — ^There has been a mistake in the kind
of nails which I have written for. I cannot say
whether you or I have made it. I wanted sixteen-
penny naUs, and eightpenny. Mr. Fogg wiU want
some of the latter kind for his hog'ds, which I will
thank you to add to those already written for.
" ^ I expect to pay you the cash at Court, or to
make an arrangement to suit you.
" ^ Your very obedient servant,
" ^ Sir, — ^I have rec'd, by the boy, three pounds
nineteen and seven pence, the balance due me of
the fifty dollars sent you this morning, after paying
£11 Os. 5d. due Mr. Jefiferson for nails. The state-
ment is perfectly correct, and I am happy that it
was in my power to accommodate you with the
" ^ I am respectfully yours,
"' Feb, 1, IBIO:
THE THREE EX-PRESIDENTS. ^23
" Mr. Monroe was an indifferent manager — ^was
nearly always in debt. He once applied to me to
oversee for him, and offered me more than Mr. Jef-
ferson was paying me ; but I said, * Sir, I would
not leave Mr. Jefferson for any price.' * Then,' said
he, * you must help me to get a man. You know
what I want.' I recommended a man to him, and
he employed him.
" Mr. Monroe was not the equal of Mr. Jefferson
or Mr. Madison ; and Chapman Johnson, Vaul W.
Southall, Wm. F. Gordon, and Phil. Barbour were
enough better lawyers than he. Everybody knew
that. But he made the purchase of Louisiana, and
that made him President. It was thought that he
managed that matter remarkably well. I well re-
member the firing of guns and great rejoicings
there were when the news of that purchase first
came. It made Mr. Monroe so popular, that he
was elected President almost without opposition.
" It used to be very interesting to the people to
see the three ex-Presidents together. I have often
seen them meet at Charlottesville on Court day, and
stand and talk together a few minutes, and crowds
of people would gather around them and listen to
their conversation, and follow them wherever they
would go. I remember one Court day I had been
helping Scott, the Kentucky drover, sell his mules,
as I knew all the people. He made fine sales that
J24 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
day, and when he had got through, he felt remark-
ably well, and insisted on treating the company.
When he came out of the bar-room he saw a large
crowd collected together, and wanted to know what
it meant. I told him Mr. Jefferson, Mr. Madison,
and Mr. Monroe were there. ' The three Virginia
Presidents ! ' he shouted, and off he ran to see
them. I have seen two other Presidents, Jackson
and John Quincy Adams. Adams was a fine little
fellow. He had a solid look.
"After Mr. Jefferson returned from Washing-
ton, he was for years crowded wfth visitors, and
they almost ate him out of house and home. They
were there all times of the year; but about the
middle of June the travel would commence from
the lower part of the State to the Springs, and
then there was a perfect throng of visitors. They
travelled in their own carriages, and came in gangs
— ^the whole family, with carriage and riding-horses
and servants ; sometimes three or four such gangs
at a time. We had thirty-six stalls for horses, and
only used about ten of them for the stock we kept
there. Very often all of the rest were fall, and I
had to send horses off to another place. I have
often sent a wagon-load of hay up to the stable, and
the next morning there would not be enough left
to make a hen's-nest. I have killed a fine beef, and
it would aU be eaten in a day or two. There was
GANGS OF VISITORS. 125
no tavern in all that country that had so much
company. Mrs. Randolph, who always lived with
Mr. Jefferson after his return from Washington,
and kept house for him, was very often greatly per-
plexed to entertain them. I have known her many
and many a time to have every bed in the house
ftill, and she would send to my wife and borrow
all her beds — she had six spare beds — ^to accom-
modate her visitors. I finally told the servant who
had charge of the stable, to only give the visitors'
horses half allowance. Somehow or other Mr. Jef-
ferson heard of this ; I never could tell how, un-
less it was through some of the visitors' servants.
He countermanded my orders.
" One great reason why Mr. Jefferson built his
house at Poplar Forest, in Bedford County, was
that he might go there in the summer to get rid of
entertaining so much company. He knew that it
more than used up all his income from the plantation
and every thing else, but he was so kind and polite
that he received all his visitors with a simle, and
made them welcome.^ They pretended to come out
of respect and regard to him, but / think that the
fact that they saved a tavern bill had a good deal
to do with it, with a good many of them. I can
assure you I got tired of seeing them come, and
waiting on tLem. I knew just about as much
about Mr. Jefferson's business as he did himseM^
126 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
and I knew that he could not stand it long. You
know that he failed. This was after I left hira, but
I knew that it was bound to come. He had to pay
$20,000 for Gov. Wilson C. Nicholas, whose daugh-
ter Jeff. Randolph married. I knew aU about that
matter. I went to see Gov. Nicholas a good many-
times on that business. Mr. Jefferson struggled on
with that $20,000 several years, but that and his
company finally broke him. After Gov. Nicholas
broke, he came to live with Jeff. Randolph, and
died there. I helped lay out his corpse, and had
his grave dug.
" When the Governor died, he was very much
in debt. People that he owed did not believe he
was dead — ^they thought it was a trick to get rid
of them. They came long distances, and would
come to see me about it, and I had hard work to
make them believe that he was dead and buried.
While he was Governor, he once sent out an agent
to meet the droves of hogs that were coming in to
Richmond, and buy them up; and the butchers
were compelled to buy them aU of him. They
w^re so mad that he had taken this way to make
money out of them, that one night they covered
the fence with hogs' entrails all around his house.
After that they used to call him the * Hog Gov-
^' When I left Mr. Jefferson, his grandson, Jeff
THOMAS JEFFERSON RANDOLPH. 127
Randolph, took my place. He took charge of the
business just as I had done for twenty years. I
have loaned him money a great many times, and
he has given me his note. Here is one of his notes,
that is only part paid :
"'$900. On or before the first day of Octo-
ber, eighteen hundred and nineteen, I promise to
pay Edmund Bacon, his heirs, executor, administra-
tor, or assigns, the sum of nine hundred dollars,
with legal interest from the twelfth day of October,
1818, to the true payment of which I bind myself,
my heirs, executor, and administrator.
" ' Witness my hand and seal, this eighth (8)
day of November, 1818.
^ Th. J. Randolph. [seal.] '
" This note is endorsed on the back as foUows :
" ' Received from Thomas J. Randolph the sum
of five hundred and fourteen dollars, in part of the
within obligation. E. Bacon.
" * Sept, 20, 1819.'
" I knew Jeff. Randolph as well as one man can
know another. Mr. Jefferson took great pains with
his education, but he didn't take after his mother
— ^he wasn't a Jefferson — ^he wasn't talented. He
128 JEFFERSON AT MONTICELLO.
never wrote those letters* about Mr. Jefferson with-
out help. I know him too well to believe that. He
never saw the day that he could write those letters.
I should like to see him again. I know we should
take a good deal of pleasure talking over old
" I was very sorry to leave Mr. Jefferson ; but I
was more willing to do it, because I did not wish
to see the poor old gentleman suffer, what I knew
he must suffer, from the debts that were pressing
upon him. I know that he thought a great deal
of me. I had proofs enough of that, besides the
letter I showed you. I know that if one man
ever tried to serve another faithfiilly, I did him —
and he was satisfied. One day he was at the
blacksmith-shop, and ***** found some fault
with me, and said my salary was too large. The
blacksmith, who heard the conversation, told me
of it, and said Mr. Jefferson replied, * Not one man
in a thousand would do as well for me as Mr.
Bacon has done.'
" When we parted, it was a trying time to me.
I don't know whether he shed any tears or not, but
I know that I shed a good many. He was sitting
in his room, on his sofa, where I had seen him so
* The letters published in RandalVa Life of Jefferson, I carried
this work to Oapt. Bacon, and he read it with great interest daring
PABTING WITH MR. JEFFERSON. 129
often, and keeping hold of my hand some time, he
said, * Now let us hear from each other occasion-
ally ; ' and as long as he lived I heard from him
once or twice a year. The last letter I ever had
from him was when I wrote him of the death of
my wife, soon after I got to this country. He ex-
pressed a great deal of sympathy for me ; said he
did not wonder that I felt completely broken up,
and was disposed to move back ; that he had passed
through the same himself; and only time and
silence would relieve me. That is the letter I told
you I so much regretted I had lost.
"I am now (1862) in my seventy-seventh year.
I have seen a great many men in my day, but I
have never seen the equal of Mr. Jefferson. He
may have had the faults that he has been charged
with, but if he had, I could never find it out. I
don't believe that, from his arrival to maturity to
the present time, the country has ever had another
such a man.''
In the preparation of tHs volume, the author
has preferred to confine his labors to a simple pre-
sentation of historical facts, leaving his readers to
draw their own conclusions from the statements
made. Whatever may be our individual views of
Mr. Jefferson's public life, or his political or reli-
gious opinions, it surely is matter for pride and joy
that one who knew him so long and well bears
such testimony to his character.
While the author has been engaged in the
preparation of this volume, lingering in spirit amid
the sacred shades of Monticello, and dwelling upon
its hallowed associations, an utterly causeless and
wicked rebellion has culminated in the establish-
ment of the so-called Confederate States.
The facts presented in this volume, while they
increase our reverence for those master-builders
who laid the foundations of our glorious Union,
give intensity to our abhorrence of their traitorous
successors, who are endeavoring to tear down the
There could be no more sad and striking illus-
tration of the folly and madness of this rebellion,
than the fact that the home of Jefferson has been
confiscated, because its owner is loyal to the Stars
and Stripes. The banner of treason — ^the Confed-
erate flag — now waves over the bones of the au-
thor of the Declaration of Independence. If this
sad fact does not stir them in their resting-place, it
surely will move every loyal heart to the rescue of
that hallowed shrine. With alt its historic associa-
tions, like Mount Vernon, it belongs to the entire
nation. With God's blessing on our arms, in the
future as in the past, we will associate Monticello
witb Quincy; Yorktown with Bunker Hill; Eu-
taw Springs with Saratoga; Marion's men in the
swamps of the Santee with those at Valley Forge ;
and from these and all our old battle-fields we will
gather flowers blushing with tints borrowed from
the blood of their hallowed dead, witb which to
entwine wreaths and garlands for our rejoicings
over our not distant and not inglorious peace.
And when that day comes, — as come it must,
for we have only quicksands beneath our feet until
we reach it, — ^when that day comes, and our dear
old Ship of State is again moored in peaceftil
waters, shall we not love her as never before?
Then she will have demonstrated not only to us,
but to the nations of the earth, that she can sail in
storm as well as calm; a storm such as Ship of
State never weathered before, and in which a less
gallant crew would inevitably have gone down.
Then^ with new-bom emphasis, we shall say :
" Sail on, Ship of State !
Sail on, O Union strong and great !
Humanity, with all its fears,
With all the hopes of future years,
Is hanging breathless on thy fate !
We know what master laid thy keel,
What workmen wrought thy ribs of steel,
Who made each mast, and sail, and rope,
What anvils rang, what hammers beat.
In what a forge, and what a heat.
Were shaped the anchors of thy hope.
Fear not each sudden sound and shock ;
Tis of the wave, and not the rock ;
*Tis but the flapping of the sail.
And not a rent made by the gale I
In spite of rock and tempest's roar.
In spite of false lights on the shore,
Sail on, nor fear to breast the sea, —
Our hearts, our hopes, are all with thee ;
Our hearts, our hopes, our prayers, our tears,
Our faith triumphant o'er our fears,
Are all with thee I are all with thee I "
ME. JEFFEESON'S WILL.
"I, Thomas Jeffebson, of Monticello, in Albemarle,
being of sound mind, and in my ordinary state of health,
make my last will and testament, in manner and form as
" I give to my grandson, Francis Eppes, son of my
dear deceased daughter, Mary Eppes, in fee simple, all
that part of my lands at Poplar Forest, lying west of the
following lines, to wit: beginning at Eadford's upper
comer, near the double branches of Bear Creek and the
public road, and running thence in a straight line to the
fork of my private road, near the bam ; thence along
that private road, (as it was changed in 1817,) to its
crossing of the main branch of North Tomahawk Creek ;
and from that crossing in a direct line over the main
ridge which divides the North and South Tomahawk,
to the South Tomahawk, at the confluence of two branch-
es where the old road to the TVaterlick crossed it, and
from that confluence up the northernmost branch, (which
separates McDaniel's and Pen7's fields,) to its source;
and thence by the shortest line to my western boundary.
And having, in a former correspondence with my de-
ceased son-in-law, John TV. Eppes, contemplated laying
off for him, with remainder to my grandson, Francis, a
certain portion in the southern part of my lands in Bed-
ford and Campbell, which I afterwards found to be gen-
erally more indifferent than I had supposed, and there-
fore determined to change its location for the better;
now, to remove all doubt, if any could arise on a purpose
merely voluntary and unexecuted, I hereby declare that
what I have herein given to my said grandson Francis, is
instead of, and not additional, to what I had formerly
contemplated. I subject all my other property to the
payment of my debts in the first place. Considering the
insolvent state of the affairs of my friend and son-in-law,
Thomas Mann Eandolph, and that what will remain of
my property will be the only resource against the want
in which his family would otherwise be left, it must be
his wish, as it is my duty, to guard that resource against
all liability for his debts, engagements, or purposes what-
soever, and to preclude the rights, powers, and author-
ities over it, which might result to him by operation of
law, and which might, independently of his will, bring it
within the power of his creditors, I do hereby devise and
bequeath all the residue of my property, real and per-
sonal, in possession or in action, whether held in my own
right, or in that of my dear deceased wife, according to
the powers vested in me by deed of settlement for that
purpose, to my grandson, Thomas J. Eandolph, and my
friends, Nicholas P. Trist and Alexander Garret, and
their heirs, during the life of my said son-in-law, Thomas
M. Bandolphy to be held and administered by them, in
trust, for the sole and separate use and behoof of my
dear daughter, Martha Bandolph, and her heirs; and,
aware of the nice and difficult distinction of the law in
these cases, I will further explain by saying, that I un-
derstand and intend the effect of these limitations to be,
that the legal estate and actual occupation shall be vested
in my said trustees, and held by them in base fee, deter-
minable on the death of my said son-in-law, and the re-
mainder during the same time be vested in my said
daughter and her heirs, and of course disposable by her
last will, and that at the death of my said son-in-law, the
particular estate of the trustees shall be determined, and
the remainder, in legal estate, possession, and use, be-
come vested in my said daughter and her heirs, in abso-
lute property forever. In consequence of the variety and
indescribableness of the articles of property within the
house of Monticello, and the difficulty of inventorying
and appraising them separately and specifically, and its
Inutility, I dispense with having them inventoried and
appraised ; and it is my will that my executors be not
held to give any security for the administration of my
estate. I appoint my grandson, Thomas Jefferson Ean-
dolph, my sole executor, during his life, and after his
death, I constitute executors, my friends, Nicholas P.
Trist and Alexander Garret, joining to them my daugh-
ter, Martha Eandolph, after the death of my said son-in-
law, Thomas M. Eandolph. Lastly, I revoke all former
wills by me heretofore made ; and in witness that this is
my will, I have written the whole, with my own hand,
on two pages, and have subscribed my name to each of
them, tills Bixteenth day of March, one thousand eight
hnndred and twenty-six.
^^I, Thomas Jefferson, of Monticello, in Albemarle,
make and add the following codicil to my will, control-
ling the same so far as its provisions go :
"I recommend to my daughter, Martha Randolph,
the maintenance and care of my well-beloved sister,
Anne Scott, and trust confidently that from affection to
her, as well as for my sake, she will never let her want a
comfort. I have made no specific provision for the com-
fortable maintenance of my son-in-law, Thomas M. Ban-
dolph, because of the difficulty and uncertainty of devis-
ing terms which shall vest any beneficial interest in him,
which the law will not transfer to the benefit of his cred-
itors, to the destitution of my daughter and her family,
and disablement of her to supply him ; whereas, prop-
erty placed under the exclusive control of my daughter
and her independent will, as if she were a femme soUj
considering the relation in which she stands both to him
and his children, will be a certain resource against want
" I give to my friend, James Madison, of Montpellier,
my gold-mounted walking-staff of animal horn, as a to-
ken of the cordial and affectionate friendship which for
nearly now an half century has united us in the same
principles and pursuits of what we have deemed for the
greatest good of our country.
" I give to the University of Virginia my library,
except such particular books only, and of the same edi-
tion, as it may already possess, when this legacy shall
take effect ; the rest of my said library, remaining after
those given to the University shall have been taken out,
I give to my two grandsons-in-law, Nicholas P. Trist and
Joseph Coolidge. To my grandson, Thomas Jefferson
Eandolph, I give my silver watch in preference of the
golden one, because of its superior excellence, my papers
of business going of course to him, as my executor, all
others of a literary or other character I give to him as of
his own property.
" I give a gold watch to each of my grandchildren,
who shall not have already received one from me, to be
purchased and delivered by my executor to my grandsons
at the age of twenty-one, and granddaughters at that of
" I give to my good, affectionate, and faithful servant,
Burwell, his freedom, and the sum of three hundred dol-
lars, to buy necessaries to commence his trade of painter
and glazier, or to use otherwise, as he pleases.
" I give also to my good servants, John Hemings and
Joe Fosset, their freedom, at the end of one year after
my death ; and to each of them respectively, all the tools
of their respective shops or callings ; and it is my will
that a comfortable log-house be built for each of the
three servants so emancipated, on some part of my lands
convenient to them with respect to the residence of their
wives, and to Charlottesville, and the University, where
they will be mostly employed, and reasonably convenient
also to the interests of the proprietor of the lands, of
which houses I give the use of one, with a curtilage of
an acre to each, during his life, or personal occupation
^^ I give also to Jolin Hemings the service of his two
apprentices, Madison and Eston Hemings, until their re-
spective ages of twentyvone years, at which period, re-
spectively, I give them their freedom ; and I humbly and
earnestly request of the Legislature of Virginia a con-
firmation of the bequest of freedom to these servants,
with permission to remain in this State, where their fami-
lies and connections are, as an additional instance of the
favor of wliich I have received so many other manifesta-
tions in the course of my life, and for which I now give
them my last, solemn, and dutiful thanks.
" In testimony that this is a codicil to my will of yes-
terday's date, and that it is to modify so far the provisions
of that will, I have written it all with my own hand in
two pages, to each of which I subscribe my name, this
seventeenth day of March, one thousand eight hundred
THE BORROWER WILL BE CHARGED
AN OVERDUE FEE IF THIS BOOK IS
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