§ From John Wayles Eppes
31 October 1812, Petersburg. Reports that “Many respectable citizens of this place are anxious for the appointment of Mr. Peter Purryear as the successor of our unfortunate friend George Jefferson.”1 Informs JM that Puryear comes from Mecklenburg County, Virginia, and has “acquired reputation and wealth unaided by Foreign connection or capital.” “For his character and standing as a merchant,” refers JM to a testimonial from some inhabitants of Petersburg.2 Reports that he has known Puryear for many years and knows him to be an “undeviating Republican” and to have “supported those principles which so distinctly mark in general the line between native & adopted citizens.”
RC (DNA: RG 59, LAR, 1809–17, filed under “Puryear”). 1 p. A postscript dated “3rd. Novr. 1812” and signed by Peterson Goodwyn and Thomas Gholson Jr. reads: “Having been long acquainted with Mr. Puryear, we fully concur in the above statment.”
1. For the vacancy in the Lisbon consulate, see James Leander Cathcart to JM, 22 June 1812, PJM-PS description begins Robert A. Rutland et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison: Presidential Series (5 vols. to date; Charlottesville, Va., 1984–). description ends , 4:497 and n. 2.
2. A 31 Oct. 1812 testimonial from Joseph Jones and others, “merchants and citizens of the town of Petersburg,” recommending Puryear for the Lisbon consulate, is filed with this letter. JM also received a 31 Oct. 1812 letter on Puryear’s behalf from Jerman Baker (DNA: RG 59, LAR, 1809–17, filed under “Puryear”).