Thomas Jefferson Papers

John Robertson to Thomas Jefferson, 27 July 1815

From John Robertson

July 27th 1815


Since I saw you I have been informed that mr Willson intends continuing his School in milton for another year I do not think that the place could maintain two schools and that there may be no clashing of interest—I must for the present decline accepting the very generous offer You did me the honour to make of your house, offices, &c

Be pleased to accept my hearty thanks, & believe me to be your most Humble & Obt Sert

John Robertson

RC (MHi); dateline beneath signature; addressed: “Mr Jefferson Monticello”; endorsed by TJ as received 5 Aug. 1815 and so recorded in SJL.

John Robertson (1767–1818), teacher, was born in Govan, near Glasgow, Scotland, and immigrated to the United States about 1791. TJ considered him an excellent teacher of the classics. Robertson kept schools in both Albemarle and Culpeper counties, and at the time of his death he was employed as a tutor at Springfield, the Culpeper County estate of Philip Slaughter. An inventory of Robertson’s personal property listed more than 450 volumes in his library and valued them at $1,038.68, more than half of a total value of $1,835.60 that also included two slaves (Lindsay G. Robertson, “Robertsons of Virginia, 1791–1987: John Robertson, Sarah Brand and their Descendants” [1987 typescript in ViCAHi], 1–7; Woods, Albemarle description begins Edgar Woods, Albemarle County in Virginia, 1901, repr. 1991 description ends , 86, 149; TJ to John Wayles Eppes, 18 Apr. 1813; Raleigh Travers Green, Genealogical and Historical Notes on Culpeper County, Virginia [1900], 24; Albemarle Co. Will Book, 7:33–8; Richmond Enquirer, 20 Oct. 1818).

Index Entries

  • Albemarle County, Va.; schools in search
  • Milton, Va.; schools in search
  • Robertson, John (1767–1818); Albemarle Co. school of search
  • Robertson, John (1767–1818); identified search
  • Robertson, John (1767–1818); letter from search
  • Robertson, John (1767–1818); TJ offers assistance to search
  • schools and colleges; in Albemarle Co. search
  • schools and colleges; J. Robertson’s Albemarle Co. school search
  • schools and colleges; Willson’s school at Milton, Va. search
  • Willson, Mr.; Albemarle Co. school of search