Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to Anthony Haswell, 11 September 1801

To Anthony Haswell

Monticello Sep. 11. 1801.


Your favor of July 20. came to me at this place. I am sorry to learn from that that the officers in the public employment still use the influence and the business of their offices to encourage presses which disseminate principles contrary to those on which our constitution is built. this evil will be remedied. we proceed with circumspection to avoid doing any wrong. your press having been in the habit of inculcating the genuine principles of our constitution, and your sufferings for those principles, entitle you to any favors in your line which the public servants can give you; and those who do not give them, act against their duty. should you continue in the business you will have the publication of the laws in your state, & probably whatever else of business any of the offices within your state can give. accept my salutations & best wishes.

Th: Jefferson

PrC (DLC); at foot of text: “Mr. Anthony Haswell. Bennington.”

You will have the publication of the laws: in 1802, Anthony Haswell & Co. published the Acts and Laws Passed by the Legislature of the State of Vermont, at Their Session at Burlington. Alden Spooner, printer of the weekly Vermont Journal in Windsor, who had published the acts and laws for the state in 1801, received the contract again in 1803, 1804, and 1805. From his Bennington office in the western district, Haswell vied with Spooner, who identified himself as the “Printer to the State of Vermont, for the Eastern District” for the annual printing of the journals of the general assembly (Shaw-Shoemaker description begins Ralph R. Shaw and Richard H. Shoemaker, comps., American Bibliography: A Preliminary Checklist for 1801–1819, New York, 1958–63, 22 vols. description ends , Nos. 1578, 1579, 1580, 3458, 3460, 5501, 5502, 7658, 7659, 9655, 9656; Haswell to TJ, 10 May 1801).

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