Thomas Jefferson Papers

George Frederick Augustus Hauto to Thomas Jefferson, 7 March 1814

From George Frederick Augustus Hauto

Germantown March 7th 1814 near Philada


I must plead, the high Idea, I entertain of you, as a Philosopher, and as a Patron to every Invention, which promisses to be usefull to our Contry, as an excuse for the liberty I take of adressing you, and of submitting to your examination the enclosed Engraving & Description of the Hydrostatic Engine—patented to Mr Long & myself;—begging your protection for the Engine, if you should find it deserving of it.

The Engine, we errected in this Village, for Mr Bayly—has been in operation for more than five months—and has been examined by Judge Cooper Professor at Dickinson College, Genl Swift, of the Engineer Corps—Mr Large Steam Engineer and many other Gentlemen, acquainted with the Subject—

I shall be happy to send you a Model of the Engine, if you wish it, and give you any Information on the Subject—beg to be favor’d with your opinion on the Engine and have the honor to be with the greatest respect—

Sir Your most obdt humb Servt

Geo Fredk Augs Hauto

RC (DLC); between dateline and salutation: “Thoms Jefferson Esqre Monticello”; endorsed by TJ as received 18 Mar. 1814 and so recorded in SJL.

George Frederick Augustus Hauto (ca. 1781–1825), merchant and inventor, emigrated by 1802 from his native Germany to the United States, and three years later he was residing in Philadelphia, where he was a merchant. He and Stephen H. Long were in Germantown when they patented their hydrostatic and steam engines on 3 Sept. 1813. About 1816 Hauto opened an office in Philadelphia, and two years later he joined with that city’s wire manufacturers Josiah White and Erskine Hazard in developing coal mines and improving navigation on the Lehigh River. White and Hazard bought out Hauto in 1820, after he failed to raise promised funds. Hauto left an estate valued at $7,418.81 and consisting mostly of coal and canal stock (Hauto’s naturalization record, Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas, 7 Dec. 1805, 23 Jan. 1808 [Philadelphia City Archives]; James Robinson, The Philadelphia Directory, for 1808 [Philadelphia, 1808]; List of Patents description begins A List of Patents granted by the United States from April 10, 1790, to December 31, 1836, 1872 description ends , 128; Robinson, The Philadelphia Directory, for 1816 [Philadelphia, 1816]; DeGH: Lehigh Coal Mine Company Records; Acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, 1817–18 sess., 197–205 [20 Mar. 1818]; Alfred Mathews and Austin N. Hungerford, History of the Counties of Lehigh and Carbon, in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania [1884], 595, 661–2; “Eleanor Morton” [Elizabeth G. Stern], Josiah White: Prince of Pioneers [1946]; Hauto’s will and estate inventory [Philadelphia Register of Wills]; Philadelphia Aurora and Franklin Gazette, 7 Feb. 1825; Reading, Pa., Readinger Adler, 15 Feb. 1825).

The enclosed engraving & description of the hydrostatic engine (Hydrostatic Engine [undated broadside in DLC: TJ Papers, 200:35689]) described the water-powered engine invented by Hauto and long, included a diagram of the machine keyed to the text (“Engraved by H. Anderson, from an original drawing by W. Lehman”), and mentioned an engine that had been constructed at the brewery of a Mr. bayly in Germantown “for the purpose of grinding malt.” Thomas cooper reprinted the broadside with cautiously supportive commentary of his own later this year (Emporium of Arts and Sciences 3 [June 1814]: 166–70; Poor, Jefferson’s Library description begins Nathaniel P. Poor, Catalogue. President Jefferson’s Library, 1829 description ends , 14 [no. 920]).

Index Entries

  • Bayly, Mr. (of Germantown, Pa.); and hydrostatic engine search
  • Cooper, Thomas; and hydrostatic engine search
  • Hauto, George Frederick Augustus; and hydrostatic engine search
  • Hauto, George Frederick Augustus; identified search
  • Hauto, George Frederick Augustus; letters from search
  • hydrostatic engine search
  • Large, Daniel; and hydrostatic engines search
  • Long, Stephen Harriman; and hydrostatic engine search
  • machines; hydrostatic engine search
  • patents; of G. F. A. Hauto and S. H. Long search
  • Swift, Joseph Gardner; and hydrostatic engine search