To James Oram
Monticello Feb. 29. 16.
Th Jefferson returns to mr Oram the prospectus of Ware’s English grammar with his signature and a Dollar Richmond bank note, which he understands is recievable at par at N. York, the price of a copy which when published may be forwarded by mail, and tenders him his respectful salutations.
PoC (MHi); on verso of reused address cover of Bernard Peyton to TJ, 31 Jan. 1816; dateline following body of letter; at foot of text: “James Oram New York 102. Water street”; endorsed by TJ. Recorded in SJL with the additional notation: “1.D.”
James Oram (ca. 1760–1826), printer, publisher, and bookseller, divided his career between New York City and Trenton, New Jersey. From 1796–1804 he published the weekly New-York Price Current, a paper to which TJ subscribed in 1798. In 1805 Oram relocated his business to Trenton, where he published the weekly Miscellany. He returned to New York City in 1806, but by 1810 he was again running his print shop and bookstore in Trenton. By 1812 Oram was back in New York City, where he took over the publication of the New-York Weekly Museum. He changed that journal’s title to the Ladies’ Weekly Museum in 1817. When Oram took part in an 1825 New York City parade celebrating the completion of the Erie Canal, he was described as “the oldest printer in the city” (John Flavel Mines, Walks in Our Churchyards: Old New York, Trinity Parish , 95–6; DNA: RG 29, CS, N.Y., New York, 1790, 1800, 1820; Brigham, American Newspapers description begins Clarence S. Brigham, History and Bibliography of American Newspapers, 1690–1820, 1947, 2 vols. description ends , 1:519, 660, 680, 701–2; MB description begins James A. Bear Jr. and Lucia C. Stanton, eds., Jefferson’s Memorandum Books: Accounts, with Legal Records and Miscellany, 1767–1826, 1997, The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , 2:983, 1319; PTJ description begins Julian P. Boyd, Charles T. Cullen, John Catanzariti, Barbara B. Oberg, and others, eds., The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1950– , 38 vols. description ends , 30:217; New York Commercial Advertiser, 23 Oct. 1799; New-York Price-Current, 2 Aug. 1800; New York Mercantile Advertiser, 15 Nov. 1806; Trenton Federalist, 23 July 1810; New-York Weekly Museum, 9 May 1812; Longworth’s New York Directory description begins Longworth’s American Almanac, New-York Register, and City Directory, New York, 1796–1842 (title varies; cited by year of publication) description ends : 338; New-York Evening Post, 5 Nov. 1825, 27 Oct. 1826).
The enclosed prospectus, not found, was for Jonathan Ware, A New Introduction to the English Grammar, composed on the principles of the English language, exclusively (Windsor, Vt., 1814).