Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Thomas Appleton, 10 June 1807

Leghorn 10. June 1807


By the Ship Jane Captn. McCarthy, which sail’d from hence on the 20. of march for Baltimore, I sent to the care of mr Christie collector for that port, three hundred & fifty bottles of Montepulciano wine, to be by him convey’d to you. I hope it has been found excellent of its kind, as the last vintage in that part of Tuscany was uncommonly good; and it was shipp’d for America at a Season, when it could neither suffer from the heat or the cold.—

By the account current which was enclos’d in my letter of that date, you will observe, Sir, that there was a balance due you of 24. Doll. & 50. Cts. for this amount I have thought it would be agreeable to invest in the best liquerers of Italy, which I have accordingly done in purchasing 50 bottles which were Sent by the Ship two friends, Capt. Williams for Baltimore, and to the care of mr Christie. they consist of the following

10 bottles of Mente pesseritide @ 4. —40
10. do. Canella @ 4. —40
10. do. Caffé @ 4. —40
10. do. Latte di Vecchia @ 4. —40
10. do. Cedrate @ 4. —40
8. do. d’Alkermes @5. —40
240 Pavolis

I am told by judges of Liqueurs that they are exceedingly fine, and which I believe on trial will prove so.—I had written the substance of the foregoing and which was to have accompanied the liqueurs, but the Captain disappointed me, in not Calling for the letter.—

I have ever consider’d it as an indirect, but perhaps not less important part of the duty of Consuls, to encourage by all proper means, the introduction into the U:States of useful artists; especially when they combine with their profession, a reputation of irreproachable morality. I have reason then to beleive, that in the two young men who are now bound to New York (in the Brig Neptune, Capt. Nye Edwards,) are, in an uncommon manner united these qualities.—their art is that of engraving on all sorts of metals; and in this they equal the first artists of Italy.—indeed, I have not seen any thing superior to a great variety of seals, executed by them; and the emblematical Seal of Silence on the present letter, is a Specimen of their talent on steel.—They excel in all branches of engraving, and would be particularly useful if Government should have occasion for Stamps for the coining of money.—I have induced Capt: Edwards to take them to New York for the inconsiterable sum of twenty Dollars each; for they are rich in every thing but money: I doubt not, however, that in the course of a few months, even this want will be Supplied, if uncommon merit in their profession, with industry and Sobriety, lead to pecuniary ease and contentment. They are hungarians by birth, the one is Call’d Francis Wittenburg—and the other Moris First.—I have recommended them to my friend Mr. Gurdon Mumford of New York, who will always be able to give any information of them, should you have occasion at any time for their Services.—Pardon me, Sir, if I have taken too much of your time on this Subject, but as I Know the distinguish’d manner in which you encourage all persons of merit in their profession, I have Ventur’d to make you acquainted with the rare talents of these deserving young men.—

Accept, Sir, the assurance of the high respect with which I am Your Obedient Servant

Th: Appleton

MHi: Coolidge Collection.

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