From the University of the State of Pennsylvania
[Philadelphia], 20 Sep. . He is directed by the trustees and faculty of the University of Pennsylvania to request that “the Honble. Thos. Jefferson secretary of state and his Family” attend a public commencement for conferring degrees in arts and medicine to be held in the Presbyterian church in Mulberry St. on Thursday at 10 A.M.
RC (DLC); 1 p.; in an unidentified hand, unsigned; partially dated; addressed: “The Honble. Thomas Jefferson—secretary of state”; endorsed by TJ as received 22 Oct. 1791 and so recorded in SJL as an “Anonymous” invitation.
On 19 Sep. 1791 the trustees of the University of the State of Pennsylvania instructed a committee consisting of Jonathan Bayard Smith, John Bleakley, and Frederick Kuhl to invite a wide range of college, city, state, and federal officials to the school’s Commencement on 22 Sep. 1791 (PU-Ar: Trustees’ Minutes, University of the State of Pennsylvania, 19 Sep. 1791). At the end of the month a Pennsylvania statute merged the university and the College of Philadelphia, with which it had competed since 1789, to create the University of Pennsylvania (Edward P. Cheyney, History of the University of Pennsylvania 1740–1940 [Philadelphia, 1940], 123, 129, 150–67; Acts of the General Assembly of … Pennsylvania, passed at a session, which was begun … the twenty-third day of August, in the year one thousand seven hundred and ninety-one … [Philadelphia, 1791], 160–3).