Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to François André Michaux, 14 December 1813

To François André Michaux

Monticello Dec. 14. 1813.


My interior situation among the mountains, and great distance from any seaport town, is extremely unfriendly to punctual correspondence with the other side of the Atlantic. vessels bound to that quarter are generally gone before I learn their destination by the public papers. I have recieved from you, at different times,1 several livraisons of your excellent work on the forest trees of America. to wit the 1st and 2d sur les Pins et Sapins, et sur les Chenes, and the 9th and 10th on the Betula, Castanea, Fagus, Diospyros Etc. I have gone over them with great pleasure and recieved from them much information which had escaped my own notice, altho’ the subjects lie under my eye. they contain a valuable addition to the knoledge of American trees, and claim for you the thanks of all who interest themselves in this most interesting branch of science. I pray you to accept my portion of that tribute, as being among those who set the highest value on your work.

I have not seen the work of M. Tessier, mentioned by you, on the subject of the Merinos. but that race of sheep is multiplying among us most extensively. the general attention paid to them will soon render their wool an article of export, altho’ our own manufactures are fast increasing also, and will soon make us independant of England for manufactures of wool and cotton, as well as for many other articles. besides the domestic benefit to be derived from this economy, the political advantage of weakening permanently a bitter and permanent enemy are of real importance. with every wish for the succesful prosecution of the valuable labors you are engaged in, be pleased to accept the assurance of my great respect & esteem.

Th: Jefferson

RC (OCLloyd); addressed: “M. F. André Michaux à Paris.” PoC (MoSHi: TJC-BC); endorsed by TJ. Enclosed in TJ to David Bailie Warden, 29 Dec. 1813, and TJ to John Graham, 6 Jan. 1814.

TJ had received livraisons (“parts”) of Michaux’s Histoire des arbres forestiers de l’Amérique septentrionale (Paris, 1810–12; Sowerby, description begins E. Millicent Sowerby, comp., Catalogue of the Library of Thomas Jefferson, 1952–59, 5 vols. description ends no. 1083) on several occasions during the preceding three years. sur les pins et sapins, et sur les chenes: “on pine, fir, and oak trees.”

1TJ here canceled “three.”

Index Entries

  • beech trees search
  • birch trees; F. A. Michaux on search
  • chestnut; European search
  • cotton; manufactures from search
  • fir trees; F. A. Michaux on search
  • Histoire des arbres forestiers de l’Amerique septentrionale (F. A. Michaux) search
  • Instruction sur les bêtes à laine et particulièrement sur la race des mérinos (A. H. Tessier) search
  • manufacturing, household; TJ on search
  • manufacturing, household; wool search
  • merino sheep; TJ on search
  • merino sheep; wool of search
  • Michaux, François André; Histoire des arbres forestiers de l’Amerique septentrionale search
  • Michaux, François André; letters to search
  • oak; F. A. Michaux on search
  • persimmon trees search
  • pine trees search
  • Tessier, Alexandre Henri; Instruction sur les bêtes à laine et particulièrement sur la race des mérinos search
  • trees; beech search
  • trees; birch search
  • trees; chestnut, European search
  • trees; F. A. Michaux catalogues search
  • trees; fir search
  • trees; oak search
  • trees; persimmon search
  • trees; pine search
  • wool; merino search