From Charles Clay
Lynchburg Jan. 9. 1814
about two Day Since I recieved yours informing me you had Seen & Spoken to the man who builds the carding Machines, the price for a wool carding one I always understood was about1 $500. am therefore not disappointed in that, & of course wish the Man to come on, if you Suppose him to be Master of his business—with Respect to the Cotton one I can Make no decisive determination until he may come & view the situation, & quantity of Water I may have to Spare for such machinery, as might be proper to erect—the town is full of bustle, Conjectures are Various, & expectation on tiptoe from a Report in circulation, that a brittish Minister has come to the City of Washington, with an Olive branch in hand &c &c &c I salute you on the new year opening with Such flattering prospects & beg you to accept Assurances of my high Consideration & profound Respect.
RC (MHi); addressed (torn): “Tho. J[e]ff[erson Esquire] of Montichello Albemarle”; endorsed by TJ as received 12 Jan. 1814 and so recorded in SJL.
Newspapers put numerous premature rumors of peace into circulation, including one that “a flag of truce has arrived from England at Annapolis, with a despatch from the British minister to the Secretary of State” (Richmond Enquirer, 4 Jan. 1814).
1. Word interlined.