Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, 2 January 1793

To the Speaker of the House of Representatives

Philadelphia, January 2nd 1793.


According to the Resolution of the House of Representatives of the 31st of December, delivered to me yesterday, I have the honor to lay before you a list of the several persons employed in my Office, with the Salaries allowed to each, as follows

George Taylor Jr. (of New York) Chief Clerk, his salary fixed by law 800
Jacob Blackwell (of New York) Clerk 500
George Pfeiffer (of Pennsylvania) Clerk 500
Philip Freneau (of New York1) Clerk for foreign Languages 250
Sampson Crosby (of Massachusetts) messenger and office keeper 250

The Act of Congress of June 4th. 1790. c. 18, allowed me an additional Clerk with the same salary as the chief Clerk. After the retirement of the person first appointed, whose services had been particularly desirable because of his long and intimate acquaintance with the papers of the Office, it did not appear necessary to make further use of the indulgence of that Law. No new appointment, therefore, has been made.

The Clerk for foreign Languages has but half the usual Salary. I found his clerkship on this establishment when I came into office, and made no change in it, except that, in the time of his predecessor, where translations were required from any language with which he was unacquainted, they were sent to a special translator and paid for by the public. The present Clerk is required to defray this expense himself. I have the honor to be, with the most perfect respect, Sir, Your most obedient & most humble servt.

PrC (DLC); in the hand of George Taylor, Jr., unsigned; at foot of text: “The Speaker of the House of Representatives.” FC (Lb in DNA: RG 59, DL). Tr (Lb in DNA: RG 233, House Records, TR). Not recorded in SJL.

The resolution of 31 Dec. 1792 directed the Secretaries of State, Treasury, and War to submit to the House “lists of the several persons employed in the offices of their respective Departments, with the salaries allowed to each” (JHR description begins Journal of the House of Representatives of the United States, Washington, D.C., Gales & Seaton, 1826, 9 vols. description ends , i, 658). Henry Remsen had been TJ’s first chief clerk in the Department of State.

1Word written over “Jersey,” erased.

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