Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to Reuben Perry, 10 May 1811

To Reuben Perry

Monticello May 10. 11


Immediately on the reciept of your letter, I desired mr Bacon to be on the lookout for Hubbard, and to apprise the Patroles of him & to inform them of the reward you had offered which I would advance for you. I moreover engaged a trusty negro man of my own, and promised him a reward on my own account if he could inform us so that he should be taken. he has not been heard of. yet I have no doubt he had been here1 as you were informed, which I infer from the correctness of the name of the man you were told brought him, & from his character. he belongs to mr Randolph, not to me, & runs the river pretty constantly.

My boat will start to Lynchburg as soon as it has got all my flour down from hence; which will be in about one trip more. she will carry the 4. pair of glass doors with their jambs & soffites, & the semicircular windows, all ready glazed for hanging. I must pray you to be in readiness to come the moment of my arrival at Poplar Forest to put them all up, that it may be done while I am there. I shall not set out from hence till the boat has started for Lynchburg. Your’s etc

Th: Jefferson

PoC (ViW: TC-JP); at foot of text: “Mr Reuben Perry”; endorsed by TJ.

Perry advertised the reward of $40 “in addition to what the law allows” for the capture of James Hubbard and his delivery either to Perry or to the jail of either Albemarle or Bedford county. He described Hubbard as “a Nailor by trade, of 27 years of age, about six feet high, stout limbs and strong made, of daring demeanor, bold and harsh features, dark complexion, apt to drink freely and had even furnished himself with money and probably a free pass; on a former elopement he attempted to get out of the State Northwardly, and was taken and confined in Halifax Jail for some time, being then the property of Thomas Jefferson, and probably may have taken the same direction now” (Richmond Enquirer, 12 Apr. 1811).

The boatman Harry was a slave owned by Thomas Mann randolph.

1Reworked from “was here.”

Index Entries

  • Bacon, Edmund; Monticello overseer search
  • building materials; door and window frames search
  • flour; sale of search
  • glass, window; for Poplar Forest search
  • Harry (boatman); transports slave search
  • Hubbard, James (Jame) (TJ’s slave); reward for return of search
  • Monticello (TJ’s estate); Overseers at; attempt to capture runaway slaves search
  • overseers; attempt to capture runaway slaves search
  • Perry, Reuben; letters to search
  • Perry, Reuben; purchases slave from TJ search
  • Poplar Forest (TJ’s Bedford Co. estate); builders at search
  • slaves; fugitive search