From James Jones Wilmer
Baltimore, Septr. 15th. 1803.
Permit me to present you with a Copy of a recent Publication, entitled “Man as he is” &c.—Its favorable reception by virtuous and intelligent minds will be very pleasing to
Sir, Your most respl. and obt. Servant
Js. Js. Wilmer
RC (DLC); at foot of text: “The President of the United States”; endorsed by TJ as received 25 Sep. and so recorded in SJL. Enclosure: Man as He Is, and the World as It Goes, addressed to the citizens of the United States (Baltimore, 1803; Sowerby, description begins E. Millicent Sowerby, comp., Catalogue of the Library of Thomas Jefferson, Washington, D.C., 1952-59, 5 vols. description ends No. 1676).
James Jones Wilmer (ca. 1749-1814), a native of Maryland, received his education in London and in Oxford at Christ Church. In 1773, he was ordained in England as an Anglican minister and subsequently returned to Maryland, where he had difficulty securing a church. After 1779, he held a succession of posts in Kent and Harford Counties. He was a prominent advocate of Swedenborgian theology and preached the doctrines of the New Jerusalem Church in Baltimore in 1792. His 1804 Wilmington, Delaware, publication, Wisdom, which “Cometh Down from Above”; and As Communicated through Mediums, was dedicated to TJ as “the first distinguished literary character; as well as the ablest statesman in America” (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 , No. 7778). In Men and Measures, from 1774 to 1809, printed in Washington in 1809, he acknowledged that TJ had “laid the foundation of much benefit to posterity,” but also had been “more calumniated and persecuted” than either of his presidential predecessors (Sowerby, description begins E. Millicent Sowerby, comp., Catalogue of the Library of Thomas Jefferson, Washington, D.C., 1952-59, 5 vols. description ends No. 3386). Wilmer advertised plans to establish an academy in Havre de Grace, and he became chaplain to the U.S. Congress from 1809 to 1813 and to the Northwestern army during the War of 1812 (Wilmer, Memoirs [Baltimore, 1792]; Washington, Papers, Rev. War Ser., 20:179n; J. Thomas Scharf, History of Baltimore City and County from the Earliest Period to the Present Day [Philadelphia, 1881], 588; Baltimore Republican, or Anti-Democrat, 16 Sep. 1803; Baltimore Federal Gazette, 24 Sep. 1803; Baltimore American and Commercial Daily Advertiser, 24 July 1810; Vol. 33:162-4).