Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Madame de Colmare, 29 August 1787

From Madame de Colmare

[Paris], 29 Aug. 1787. Has received TJ’s letter informing her that the value of paper money in America depends on the date on which it was received. The bill in her husband’s possession must have been received in the summer of 1779 because he left America in September of that year and never returned; therefore, even though the bill might not be worth more, it certainly would not be valued at less than the 73.livre tournois mentioned by TJ as its worth in 1780. In reply to TJ’s suggestion that she apply to the French consul in America, she has no acquaintance there to assist her and time does not permit this procedure; asks TJ to take charge of the bill and to advance her 73.livre tournois, an amount which, though modest, is necessary to meet her obligations.

RC (DLC); 2 p.; in French. At the foot of the first page are calculations by TJ converting the value of the bill into livres according to some depreciation scale: he divided 60.0 by [1]6.7, arriving at a figure of 3.6 which he multiplied by 5.25, obtaining a total of 18.livre tournois 18s., a value which he neglected to indicate in his to Mme. de Colmare, 23 Aug. 1787.

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