Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Robert Smith, 21 April 1802

From Robert Smith

Ap. 21. 1802


Mr Neilson the writer of the enclosed Letter is a Gentleman of respectability in the State of Maryland. And no person Contributed more than he did to the triumph of Republicanism in that State.

Yours Respectfully

Rt Smith

RC (DNA: RG 59, LAR); endorsed by TJ as received from the Navy Department on 22 Apr. and “Doctr. Raphl. Smith to be Superintt. hospitl. N. Orleans” and so recorded in SJL. Enclosure: Roger Nelson to Smith, dated Frederick, Maryland, 7 Apr. 1802, in which Nelson recommends his friend Dr. Raphael Smith to be superintendent of the marine hospital at New Orleans proposed by TJ; Nelson describes Smith as “a Young Man of finished Education” and fluent in French, Spanish, and Italian; he was educated in Rome, studied medicine at Frederick under Dr. Philip Thomas, and also attended medical lectures at Philadelphia; Smith left Maryland on 22 Mch. to establish a practice in New Orleans, and Nelson considers him to be “perfectly correct in his Habits and very attentive to business” (RC in same).

Roger Nelson (NEILSON) was an attorney and member of the Maryland legislature. He served as a Republican in Congress from 1804 to 1810 (DAB description begins Allen Johnson and Dumas Malone, eds., Dictionary of American Biography, New York, 1928–36, 20 vols. description ends ; Biog. Dir. Cong. description begins Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1774–1989, Washington, D.C., 1989 description ends ).

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