Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to William Prichard, 6 December 1810

To William Prichard

Monticello Dec. 6. 10.


A circumstance which shall be explained induces me to recall to your recollection an old acquaintance and customer while you lived in Philadelphia. I subscribed to mrs Lydia R. Baily of Philadelphia for 2. copies of Freneau’s poems which she was about to print. by some mistake, 10. copies were sent. they were addressed thro’ the President of the US. whose business probably prevented their being immediately forwarded, and mine has for some time prevented my attending to them. on apprising mrs Bailey of the mistake she desired I would return them to Philadelphia. desirous of having them sold for her if I can, I have thought it better to forward them to you with a request that you will hold either them or their proceeds, if you can sell them, subject to her order. if you can be so good as to drop her a line, asking her instructions you will oblige me.  I find remaining on my hands 24. copies of the Parliamentary Manual, which if you can sell at any price you think reasonable you will oblige me, taking your commission on them. there is a little supplement for every copy of two leaves. these two parcels in two separate boxes are now forwarded by a boat to the care of messrs Gibson & Jefferson. Accept my friendly salutations & assurances of esteem & respect.

Th: Jefferson

PoC (MHi); at foot of text: “Mr Pritchard”; endorsed by TJ.

William Prichard (ca. 1751–1815) was a printer, bookseller, and circulating-library proprietor originally from Philadelphia. He supplied TJ with books as early as 1783, and in 1788 he and his partner Parry Hall published the first American edition of TJ’s Notes on the State of Virginia. Prichard spent much of his career in Richmond, where he continued in the bookselling trade (MB description begins James A. Bear Jr. and Lucia C. Stanton, eds., Jefferson’s Memorandum Books: Accounts, with Legal Records and Miscellany, 1767–1826, 1997, The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , esp. 1:528–9; PTJ description begins Julian P. Boyd, Charles T. Cullen, John Catanzariti, Barbara B. Oberg, and others, eds., The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1950– , 32 vols. description ends , 7:288, 12:427–9; Philadelphia Pennsylvania Gazette, 12 Dec. 1781; Coolie Verner, A Further Checklist of the Separate Editions of Jefferson’s Notes on the State of Virginia [1950], 9; Richmond Enquirer, 24 Nov. 1804, 12 Feb. 1805; Richmond Virginia Patriot, 4 Mar. 1815).

Index Entries

  • A Manual of Parliamentary Practice (Thomas Jefferson); W. Prichard sells search
  • Bailey, Lydia R.; and P. Freneau’s poems search
  • books; returned to W. Prichard search
  • Freneau, Philip; Poems Written and Published during the American Revolutionary War search
  • Gibson & Jefferson (Richmond firm); and poetry for TJ search
  • Gibson & Jefferson (Richmond firm); and writings by TJ search
  • Hall, Parry search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Writings; Manual of Parliamentary Practice search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Writings; Notes on the State of Virginia search
  • Madison, James; and P. Freneau’s poems search
  • Notes on the State of Virginia (Thomas Jefferson); first American edition search
  • Poems Written and Published during the American Revolutionary War (Freneau); TJ’s subscription to search
  • poetry; subscriptions to, sent to TJ search
  • Prichard, William; and P. Freneau’s poetry subscription search
  • Prichard, William; identified search
  • Prichard, William; letters to search
  • subscriptions, for publications; poetry search